by the Rev. David M. Rider, President & Executive Director
Surrounded by America’s Cup racing yachts, streaking Blue Angels jets and battleships in harbor for Fleet Week, 110 SCI–Bay Area donors enjoyed a Sunset Cruise past the Golden Gate Bridge on the California Hornblower last Thursday, October 6. Proceeds from the event benefited outreach to international seafarers at SCI’s International Maritime Center.
Sister organizations Seafarers Ministry of the Golden Gate (SMGG) and Apostleship of the Sea collaborated with SCI to make the evening a success, providing volunteers as well as silent and live auction items. SMGG port chaplain Roger Bauer doubled as lead musician with his band Rocknrev and the Deacons.
Bay Area Center Director Adrienne Yee has increased SCI’s visibility in the local maritime community. The Sunset Cruise enjoyed underwriting sponsorship and guests from Hapag-Lloyd, Matson, General Steamship Corporation, the Port of Oakland, Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty, Episcopal Charities and the Seafarers International Union, along with Blue & Gold annual sponsorships from Chevron Shipping Company and the San Francisco Bar Pilots. Special thanks go to Hornblower Cruises & Events for use of the MV California.
Among the evening’s highlights were remarks from US Coast Guard Commander Jason Tama (Sector San Francisco) and the San Francisco Bar Pilots’ Captain Gregory Tylawsky. Both spoke from personal experience about the challenges of life at sea, including the ways that maritime ministry supports seafarers amid the routine loneliness and occasional crises inherent in maritime work.
Thanks to SCI’s growing numbers of Bay Area friends, our event exceeded its fundraising goals while strengthening our sense of community in service to seafarers. I truly appreciate the creativity and hard work of event committee members Adrienne Yee, the Rev. Roger Bauer, Barbara Bowman, Helene Bunch, the Rev. Kathy Crary, Bruce Hoeger and Sam Sause.