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Tra­di­ti­o­nal boat trip set us on cour­se

11.9.2020 16.20

Juttua muokattu:

11.9. 16:20

Hans Pe­täis­tö

Fin­land's se­cond lar­gest city has a be­au­ti­ful co­ast­li­ne and a mag­ni­fi­cent arc­hi­pe­la­go. The length of Es­poo's co­ast­li­ne is about 58 ki­lo­me­ters and there are 165 is­lands in front of it. The mul­ti-fa­ce­ted arc­hi­pe­la­go now drew the Es­poo brot­hers on a tra­di­ti­o­nal boat trip for the fifth time.

The Es­poo’s Ry (As­so­ci­a­ti­on of Pe­a­ce) was foun­ded on­ly in 1998 – be­fo­re that it be­lon­ged to Hel­sin­ki. Des­pi­te the cong­re­ga­ti­on’s yo­ung age, the num­ber of mem­bers ex­ceeds 500. More and more pe­op­le are at­ten­ding the brot­hers' eve­nings. The most po­pu­lar is a boat trip in the last week of Au­gust.

Pre­vi­ous ex­cur­si­ons have ta­ken place on Pen­ta­la Is­land, Käär­me­saa­ri, and now for the se­cond time on Iso Va­sik­ka­saa­ri. The we­at­her this time was bet­ter than it could pos­sib­ly be. Es­pe­ci­al­ly for sai­ling – the bree­ze was sui­tab­le to take the bo­ats com­for­tab­ly to the open sea. When we ar­ri­ved on the is­land, the words of the hymn wri­ter came to mind: “The ship gets to the port, the storm calms down comp­le­te­ly. At His vic­to­ry, the Lord’s Zion will be gra­te­ful­ly prai­sing there. ” (VK 179: 7.)

At the ed­ge of the den­se spruce fo­rest, in the bar­be­cue shed were re­a­dy fi­res bla­zing. The yo­ung coup­le stan­ding by the fire won­de­red who was this group that now ap­pe­a­red. One of the men im­me­di­a­te­ly ad­mit­ted that we are men from the As­so­ci­a­ti­on of Pe­a­ce, which be­longs to the state church, al­so told where ser­vi­ces are usu­al­ly held. The wo­man rep­lied con­ten­ted­ly, "Let us then ser­ve the same God."

Af­ter the long co­ro­na break, ser­vi­ces have been held in Es­poo on­ly twice. The­re­fo­re, even now it was de­ci­ded to qui­e­ten for de­vo­ti­on. The ma­ri­ti­me song of Zion SL 180 led Juk­ka Liuk­ko­nen's text se­lec­ti­on to St. Mark 4: "And the same day, when the even was come, he saith un­to them, Let us pass over un­to the ot­her side. And when they had sent away the mul­ti­tu­de, they took him even as he was in the ship.” Evan­ge­list Mark desc­ri­bed how ”He re­bu­ked the wind, and said un­to the sea, Pe­a­ce, be still. And the wind ce­a­sed, and there was a great calm.”

Many pra­yers have ri­sen over time as the winds or even hur­ri­ca­nes have ra­ged. Liuk­ko­nen al­so spoke about the storms of the spi­rit and the pe­ri­od of pe­a­ce that has fol­lo­wed. I was par­ti­cu­lar­ly re­min­ded of a book I just fi­nis­hed re­a­ding, pub­lis­hed a ye­ar ago; In the Midst of Storms. From even these storms we were mi­ra­cu­lous­ly spa­red, by grace alo­ne.

In his speech, Liuk­ko­nen al­so re­fer­red to the first ser­mon by Erk­ki Tala, who had just been bles­sed as a spe­a­ker, spoke the pre­vi­ous Sun­day about the four kinds of ground in which seeds are sown. Be­lie­vers are com­pa­red to sai­lors, fis­her­men and so­wers.

A good seed has been sown, the har­vest time of Au­gust is at hand, but this seed of the gos­pel is still worth so­wing. It was even now abun­dant­ly avai­lab­le and au­dib­le, even to that pas­ser-by with his dog, if he just lent his ears.

The speech was fol­lo­wed by a long chat ses­si­on. It see­med as if the brot­hers had spo­ken that eve­ning all that was left un­said du­ring co­ro­na rest­ric­ti­ons. The same need for dis­cus­si­on was in the men's eve­ning in Hel­sin­ki a week ear­lier, when even af­ter three hours a brot­her wis­hed the good dis­cus­si­on to be con­ti­nu­ed at the next gat­he­ring. Now co­mes the im­por­tan­ce of tal­king about the way and the jour­ney – how to stay on the right cour­se.

This time, there were 9 boat crews on this trip, a to­tal of 41 men. Le­a­ving the port, so­me­o­ne said it was too hot when the sun was shi­ning and the life vest was even kee­ping him war­mer. Ho­we­ver, now as dusk set in, it be­gan to feel re­al­ly cool. Re­tur­ning from the is­land, ref­lec­ti­ons of moon­light mer­ged with the wake be­hind our boat over the calm wa­ter’s sur­fa­ce. The sum­mer in Es­poo al­wa­ys ends with this trip.

The words of the fi­nal hymn ec­ho­ed still in my mind:

The lands, the fo­rests are si­lent and the seas are calm give thanks to God. He ap­pe­a­sed the po­wer of the winds. Si­len­ce, speech on the lips, on­ly the he­art to speak now al­lo­wed.

You, my God, / now I thank you with joy, when I feel yo­ur po­wer. Eve­ryt­hing is in yo­ur pos­ses­si­on, he­a­ven rings for yo­ur prai­se and yo­ur whole cre­a­ti­on.” (VK 560:1–2.)

Voit lu­kea ju­tun suo­mek­si tä­män vii­kon Päi­vä­mie­hes­tä.


Muis­ta­kaa tämä: joka niu­kas­ti kyl­vää, se niu­kas­ti niit­tää, ja joka run­saas­ti kyl­vää, se run­saas­ti niit­tää. 2. Kor. 9:6

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