I first met Peter at morning tea in the mess on MV Doulos during the heart transplant of the vessel in Capetown South Africa. He had heard about the ship’s transformation program and came to offer help as a carpenter. He was always smiling, helpful & the dispenser of much encouragement from the Lord.
Led by God he decided to join this ministry but, as OM’s recruitment policy requires, had to raise his own support which meant returning home & applying through his country’s OM office. I sensed we were in for great blessing when he arrived back for a two year commitment. I thought he always reflected the love of the Lord Jesus everywhere, walked closely with the Lord, always helpful, bringing encouragement & blessing to us on board & those he would meet in teams off from the ship.
It was not long before he was appointed to the Ship’s Line Up office, preparing ahead for the vessels arrival in ports. This meant he was not on board for long periods of time but when he was there was always great meal-fellowship at my table & at other times.
After I left OM ministry I lived in Eindhoven, Holland for a locum & one day caught the train to Ghent, Belgium where Peter was heading up preparations for the ships visit there. It was a great day of fellowship & like a breath of fresh spiritual air to me. We never saw each other again after the vessel left Belgium & Holland until his marriage.
We were praying together by remote about this young lady he had met in Cyprus & was surprised & honoured to be invited to officiate at his forthcoming marriage to Hasmig.
My last time of fellowship with Peter was the marriage week in Cyprus.
Like a great Line Up person all his friends had been instructed to arrive in Cyprus by the Sunday night before the Saturday wedding. I soon found out the reason we were to be there so early. He had arranged for us to visit castles, beaches, tourist and historical sites of Cyprus.It was an amazing week but the question over our head was “is the wedding going ahead or not?” Finally on the Thursday night his doctor gave the all clear & things moved rapidly from then on.
It was a glorious and beautiful wedding of great fellowship & excitement, the happy couple and their families, friends catching up with each other – all quite usual for most weddings, but theirs was special & different. His battle with his cancer of the skull was a shadow – was it healed or not?
I have always been glad that that was the last time we met because of the memories I have. Due to my locum work I was not able to be with him for his homecoming from New Zealand to glory. I guess the Father wanted him home with them, forever with the Lord.
But I rejoice in the grace of God that he was able to hold their daughter Keziah in his arms a few days before he left us. I still struggle from time to time over his passing – a beloved son & bondservant of the Lord, faithful, patient, caring, and I miss him even after these years. The small gift they gave to each of the wedding guests still sits on the only table in my retirement unit & that keeps his memory strong.