It was 3 years ago when I wrote about the last voyage of MV Doulos before it was de-commissioned in 2009 in its last port, Singapore. I was delighted to hear that a new ship is continuing its tradition of spreading knowledge, hope, help and charity around the globe. MV Logos Hope is the fourth ship to be utilised by GBA Ships, a German charitable Christian organization (previously MV Doulos, MV Logos II, MV Logos). It finally found its way to the Philippine shores, visiting Cebu first and now docked at Pier 15 in Manila until March 14, 2012.
Looking from the outside, MV Logos is definitely bigger than MV Doulos, they said its twice as big as any ship they had. This is definitely better as it can accommodate up to 800 people inside. This cut short the queue outside. There’s a P20 entrance fee.
Inside, past the smell of popcorn and hotdog stands is the welcome area where visitors are shown a mini-video about MV Logos Hope and the milestone timeline of GBA Ships on the wall is displayed. The Bookstore section is now more organized and spacious. Yes, there were a lot of people inside but it wasn’t as elbow-rubbing as before. It was also relatively well air conditioned.
There are about 7000 titles in this organized book fair. A lot of them are children’s books, educational, self help, literary classics and Christian. There were some fictions, travel and some music CDs but its majority is christian books and children.
Past the bookstore is an impressive diorama exhibit about “The Journey of Life”, the story of the prodigal son set in modern times. Then there’s the International Cafe with soft ice cream, drinks, cookies and breads can be bought. A little music, courtesy of some of the 400plus volunteers in the ship alongside a wall of encouraging message at the X-perience Center, A booth where people can be educated more about AIDs by listening to an 8-minute MP3 Audio.
Leaving the ship, I saw another group of people in line. Families with young ones and friends excited to board the ship. It was amusing as it’s probably also a first for these kids to experience boarding an actual ship. For me I’m just glad the spirit of MV Doulos lives on in this new ship.
MV Logos Hope will be docked at Manila South Pier until March 14, 2012. The Ship is open from 10:00am to 9:30pm Tuesdays to Saturdays and 1:30pm to 9:30pm on Sundays. MV Logos Hope will move to Subic Bay on March 15 and stay there till April 8, then move on to Subic Bay Shipyards Works Project on April 9 to until June 25 where they would be moving on to Indonesia. Visit www.logoshope.org for more info.
Ferdz Decena is an award-winning travel photographer, writer and blogger. His works has found print in publications such as Singapore Airlines’s Silver Kris, Philippine Airlines’ Mabuhay, Cebu Pacific’s Smile and Seair InFlight. He has also lent his expertise to various organizations like the Oceana Philippines, Lopez Group Foundation, Save the Children and World Vision, contributing quality images for their marketing materials.