Today a Memorial Service was organised to commamorate the 18 seafarers who lost their lives when the Rocknes capsized on 19th January 2004.
We welcomed Rev. Ian McGilvray
of the The Dampier Seafarers Centre
He had the following words for us :
We are gathered here this morning to remember the tragedy that occurred in that cold Fjord
ten years ago when eighteen brave souls were lost to the sea when this vessel capsized.
Human beings have experienced the mystery of death and the pain of grief, since time
began. And every society has developed rites to mark the apssage of life through death and
to commemorate the dead.
In a number of ways, death brings us closer together, unites us. And it is appropriate that
for a time, each one of us put aside our work, our cares, our business and our pleasure, to
be joined with everyone here as fellow mariners who all share in a common bond of respect
for our fellow seafarers who have lost their lives in pursuit of their profession.
Our thoughts are especially with the families who continue to mourn the loss of their loved
ones. To lose someone you love brings a special sort of grief.
As we remember this tragedy and face the reality of our own mortality, we need to recognize
that if we are to find endurance, encouragement and comfort amidst the pressures, losses,
and tragedies of life, we must turn to the Bible, the Word of God.
In John 11:25 Jesus said,
"I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he
dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die." Then He asked, " Do you
It is the Christian's belief in Christ as the Resurrection and the Life and its strong validation
by Christ's own death and resurrection from the grave that so encourages our hearts as we
face the loss of our loved ones and face death ourselves.
Let us pray.
Almighty and everlasting God, Lord of life and death, we acknowledge you in all our ways,
and in all the events which befall us. In sorrowing yet in quietness and in confidence, we
have gathered for to remember the lives of those who like us, have go down to the sea in
ships, who do business on great waters. Lift us above the shadow of mortality into the light and comfort of your presence, and amid
the decay of visible things, draw near to us, and speak to us your word of peace.
We pray for those who mourn their loved ones, and ask you to keep them in Your love. In
proud thanksgiving, we remember all that they were, and how they shared in our common
O Lord, support us all the day long of this troubled life, until the shadows lengthen and the
evening comes, and work is done. Then, Lord, in our mercy, grant us a safe berth, a
friendly arrival, and peace at the last. Amen.
The past with all its meaning is sacred and secure and cannot now ever be altered by time
and circumstance. The final parting signified by death is bound to bring shock and sorrow whenever the ties of
love, friendships and kindred spirits are involved. This is a natural reaction of the human
Laying of the wreath,
We bless you for all who have faithfully lived and died, and pray that we too may one day in
confidence be able to enter your nearer presence, and inherit the promises of eternal life.
Through Jesus Christ our Lord.
The Blessing of the ship.
Our Father, we ask your presence upon this event of the blessing of this vessel. We thank
you for the beauty of the earth and the mighty waters that surround the land. May we
responsible for the just and proper use of your creation. Like the psalmist of old we cry onto
you for the protection of those who go down to the sea in ships. In your holy name we pray.
I remind you that this blessing is not a good luck charm
The Blessing acknowledges, as this portion of Psalm 107 indicates, that God is in control.
Those who go down to the sea in ships, who do business on great waters,
They see the works of the LORD, and His wonders in the deep.
For He commands and raises the stormy wind, which lifts up the waves of the sea.
They mount up to the heavens, they go down again to the depths; their soul melts
They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wits' end.
Then they cry out to the LORD in their trouble, and He brings them out of their
He calms the storm, so that its waves are still.
Then they are glad because they are quiet;
so He guides them to their desired
Oh, that men would give thanks to the LORD for His goodness, and for His
wonderful works to the children of men!
Let us pray.
O Lord God Almighty, God of boundless love, at the beginning of creation your spirit
hovered over the deep. You called forth every creature and the seas teamed with life. Just
as Your son Jesus calmed the Sea of Galilee, and brought his disciples to safety, so has He
given us the rich harvest of salvation. Let your blessing be upon this vessel, the Nordnes ,
and all her equipment. We ask also Lord that your hand of blessing will be upon all who sail
in her. Protect them from the dangers of wind and rain and of the perils of the deep. Bring us
all to the harbour of light and peace
May Your protection and the guardianship always be with them.
In the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.