Several years ago, I was talking with a village elder who told me, “I like that you come here on the boat.” We used the Alaska State Ferry system to get from Homer to Kodiak and then a smaller boat to get to his community. When I prodded him further about why, he shared a piece of wisdom I’ll never forget. He contrasted the difference between those who come by boat and those who fly in. He shared that he believes those who fly in come to visit and are not as interested in the people as those who come by boat. He felt that when people come by boat, they plan to stay a while and have a more genuine interest in “coming to be with us.” Not all villagers share this sentiment, but for some, it’s very real. We want the ability to have longer times to stay in a community and be able to practically serve them and get to know them. Having our own vessel will enable us to do this much more effectively.
The boat’s name, which we will be “Agghiti”, an Inupiat (the people group of northern Alaska) word for “something good is coming”, refers to the salmon coming to the rivers. When Jesus came to bring the Kingdom of God, it was “Agghiti”, something good that was coming! For us it means people taking the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the communities while working to establish Kingdom lifestyles and activities.
This boat has the capacity to carry about 10,000 pounds of cargo and carry up to 10 people. It can sleep 7 and travel a distance of about 450 miles on a single tank of fuel. It is large enough to be safe on open water, but small enough to get in and out of most of the coastal communities. It is also powerful enough to get away from the storms which can suddenly appear is this area.
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(Updated: 12 Sep 2019)
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