Celebrating Sea Sunday
Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.
Mary, Star of the Sea. Pray for us.
Sunday, 10 July 2022 is Sea Sunday, an opportunity to recognise the important work performed by seafarers across the world.
Looking about our homes and at our work, we can recognise many commodities that are brought to our shores by cargo ships. Over 95% of global trade is carried by ships. As an island nation, we in Australia are heavily reliant on ships and the commodities they bring to us for our survival.
The Stella Maris (Apostleship of the Sea) ministry concerns itself totally with the welfare and pastoral care of seafarers who crew these ships. In almost every country bound by sea, there is a community of people who care for seafarers, fishers and their families. The Stella Maris Apostolate has, for more than 100 years, responded to seafarer needs and has advocated on their behalf regardless of colour or creed.
Seafarers can be at significant risk. They are in need, especially at a time of pandemic, of the rest that Jesus promises in this year's Gospel theme. They can be burdened by isolation, loneliness, exploitation, wage theft, climatic hardship, abuse, fear of piracy and insecure employment.
Pope Francis has sent a message of support to maritime personnel and seafarers, acknowledging their important contributions to the movement of essential goods.
Know that you are not alone and that you are not forgotten. Your work at sea often keeps you apart from others, but you are close to me in my thoughts and prayers, and in those of your chaplains and the volunteers of Stella Maris.
Pope Francis July 2020
Even during the pandemic, Stella Maris chaplains, managers and volunteers continued working around Australian ports to serve these vulnerable confined seafarers when ships dock. In addition to the advocacy work on behalf of seafarers with the maritime industry, Stella Maris support seafarers through the provision of chaplaincy services, care packs of essential hygiene products, phone cards/Wi-Fi, warm clothing, telephone counselling and provision of live stream Masses for Catholic seafarers.
The Stella Maris ministry is dependent on donations both financial and in kind. The annual Sea Sunday appeal encourages our Catholic community to acknowledge seafarers as the essential workers they are and to respond by giving back something to them in gratitude for all the sacrifices they endure to make our lives more comfortable.
Overview of the work of Stella Maris
More information on how to support this ministry can be found at the Apostleship of the Sea Web site link below. Donations may also be made at the Web site link below.
We continue to keep all seafarers and their families in our prayers.
Apostleship of the Sea Australia Web site