A major focus of crewmembers' efforts on shore while Logos Hope was undergoing annual maintenance was outreach to a remote people group in the Mexican mountains.
The district of Orizaba has been visited by teams from previous OM ships over many years, so it was particularly special for some crew to return, and for all to see fruit from the ministry of those who have served before them. One such result was discovering that a teenager who committed his life to Christ at an outreach fifteen years ago is now in training to be a pastor.
A church leader moved out of his home in order to let a team from the ship use the house. They were blessed with food and transport around the area from the congregation. They were kept busy too: from speaking at school assemblies to sharing the gospel door-to-door and informing the church about Christians who are persecuted around the world.
Highlights of the community interaction were a number of large-scale shows, where Logos Hope's international volunteers shared their different cultural expressions but common faith. More than 3,000 people attended these evenings and had the opportunity to ask questions. Several made the decision to follow Jesus.
“I found it a little bit scary, to be honest,” said John Hernadez (Aruba). “I've never been to people who didn't know about other civilisations and countries, so we had to be very simple in how we connected with them. But it was one of my best experiences since joining the ship.”
John continued, “The indigenous Nahua people live in very poor surroundings but had so much joy – whatever they had, they offered it to us. It was amazing to seeing how active the church was in the mountains. Working with them was tiring, but really encouraged us all.”
“As an introvert, I struggled to have motivation to keep meeting people,” said Steph Jemphrey (Northern Ireland). “But God really stretched me in this area and gave me a new capacity. I felt my heart was opened.
“I also really learnt the simplicity of the gospel,” Steph said. “When you see the reaction of some people who accept it, you know that it's a truth that people need. This experience helped me to fall in love with sharing the gospel again.” She explained, “It not only brings joy to the people who accept it; it brings you joy too, because you know what you are doing is spreading light and has eternal value.”