To all crew members around the world waiting patiently to return home – this letter is for YOU!

May 27, 2020

I am one of the many people who have been following your situation closely on the Crew Center Facebook page. It has been painful for me to learn that some of you are experiencing depression, others have lost loved ones back home to COVID-19, and ALL of you are missing your families. It has been a long and difficult journey for you. I feel for you and wish I could do more to help.

You know, this week I read the account of Joseph in the Bible and it reminded me of your situation. He was a man who was isolated from his family and friends in a foreign land for 13 years! Very hard! But he was never completely abandoned. In Genesis 39:23 it says that during that hard time “Jehovah was with Joseph and Jehovah God made whatever he did successful.” (If you don’t have a Bible on your ship you can read it for free in hundreds of languages on JW.ORG ). Anyhow, I reflected on the fact that although everything seemed to be going wrong, (e.g. he was even accused of a crime he didn’t commit and ended up in prison), God never abandoned him AND made everything he did successful. He took care of him in unexpected ways. And this can happen to us today as well!

There was a time when I went through tough times – but just like you, I am a fighter! I didn’t give up! Something practical that helped me a lot was to keep a “Blessings Book”. I would write each day the good things that would happen to me and things I was thankful for, both big and small. Things like how fortunate I felt to have a loving family, all the way to being thankful for being able to enjoy a beautiful sunset. And you know what, I ended up filing 3 books with blessings during that time!

A quote I came across a couple of years ago says “What consumes your mind, controls your life”. So please keep filling your mind with all of our messages of love and support. Soon you will be back in the arms of those you love – How exciting!

Although I am limited in what I can do to help, please know that I am happy to just be a listening ear, or happy to exchange some encouraging thoughts with you – whatever helps you get through this. My details are at the bottom of this letter.

So as we say in Australia “Keep your chin up” (it means to raise your head and keep positive during hard times), the sunshine after the storm is getting closer by the day. In fact, each night as you go to sleep, be proud that you have made it through yet another day. I too am proud of your courage and resilience to keep going. 

Well done CREW!!!

  • Warm Regards
  • Marilyn Lopez (Wollongong, Australia)
  • “Don’t Give Up! Normally it’s the last key on the ring that opens the door”