I have heard many folk say that as you get older time flies by quicker… of course, that physically isn’t true – it’s just that we slow down and what once we did in seconds now takes more time. Time to reflect, to process, to decide and then to do whatever it is that you want to do…

On our wedding day – what a stunningly beautiful lady – her beauty was more than skin deep – she was a beautiful person who loved all and gave her everything for Jesus.

It will be three weeks tomorrow (7th Feb) since Anne died. So much has happened. So many forms/letters/banks with trips here and there to inform folks and process other official ‘requirements’ that have been tackled and thankfully, mostly completed. And life continues. 

I returned to ‘normal’ working hours on Monday (is there such a thing for a chaplain?) and the days seem to be full – so much to be caught up on.

The first thing I want to do is to thank everyone who took time to write a note, send a card, post a comment or called me to offer their condolences. This has been a source of great comfort and support during these days of adjustment for me (and the whole family) as we endeavour to establish a new ‘routine’ without Anne at the helm!

Whilst I would love to respond to each one individually, that is just not going to happen. Please forgive me for not doing so and consider this a very sincere heartfelt thanks for your love and support.

A final thank you to all my volunteers at the centre – they truly did hold the fort during my absence. You know who you are and you certainly lived up to being winners of the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service! (We are currently recruiting more volunteers so if you live in the Aberdeen Area, please do get in touch!) 

However, I want to look forward and not backward. I want to “press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus!” (Philippines 3 v 14)

The past is the past, it cannot be undone; tomorrow may never come so why worry about that? The present is here and certain; a gift from God – which is why it is called the present! 

So moving forwards… much is happening as ever, and tomorrow we have a HSE and Fire inspection… if it is good enough for seafarers, then it is good enough for seafarers centres!! Haha! 

This Friday will be out third Sea-Shed gathering for retired and unemployed seafarers. They have been great times and many a sea story has been recounted!! They have also enjoyed having use of free iPads to get a hold on using modern technology and the Internet. lots of fun and laughter… and there is a free lunch and tab-nabs too! So if you are a retired or unemployed seafarer, please do come along at 1000 for a few hours, but do let me know in advance so that I can get the food in! 

A bit further forward, we are looking to 1. recruit another Chaplain and 2. have a spring clean of the Centre… more info on the cleaning in my next blog!

Otherwise, it is the ‘normal’ routine of ship visits, meetings. talks and paperwork! 🙁 

Take care and if you need anything, please do not hesitate to get in touch by email or on my mobile.


Howard ><>


I forgot to mention that the retiring collection after Anne’s Celebration Service was over £1,000 for which I thank all who contributed. This generous donation was given to Byron’s school, Orchard Brae School who were delighted to receive this additional support. More information here: https://www.facebook.com/orchardbraeschoolaberdeen/


  1. Theresa Swain Reply

    God keep you strong Howard

  2. Caroline Traa Reply

    Thinking of you all Howard..

  3. Judi Martin Reply

    “Life goes on” always sounds so inappropriate, but the fact is – hard though that can be, it’s true. We can make it our mission to carry on with all best efforts in memory of the loved ones we’ve lost. ‘Another Day, Another Hill To Climb’ is what has kept me going. Keep precious memories in your heart, keep strong, and keep doing your marvellous work.

  4. Elinor Reply

    God keep you and yours strong and loving and inspirational. Blessings from Elinor

  5. Adam Plenderleith Reply

    Prayerfully supporting your new journey. Every blessing..

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