Logos Hope has been warmly welcomed to Kingstown harbour in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
As the nation’s Deputy Prime Minister, Sir Louis Straker, officially opened the bookfair to the public in the capital city, he expressed his hope that the books available to his citizens would provide inspiration to ‘refine persons, uplift minds and ennoble lives.’
“Except for those who have travelled to the more developed countries of the world,” said Sir Louis, “We have never seen anything like this in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; where we can find 5,000 books in one place. And in these books,” he continued, “I am sure, would be treasured the longings of heart, the thoughts of great men – those who have put pen to paper in order to enable us to learn from their experience and to be benefitted from the knowledge that they have.”
The organisation’s vessels have made a total of 11 visits to this Caribbean island nation, and Vincentians have been eagerly anticipating the return of Logos Hope, whose last port call in Kingstown was in 2009. The Deputy Prime Minister, who is also the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Commerce and Trade; told those gathered for the opening ceremony that he had telephoned all the schools in his community to make sure they would bring their pupils to visit the floating bookstore.
“If you had 50,000 visitors in 2009 – which is close to half our population – we trust you would have even 60,000 or more this year,” the guest of honour told Logos Hope’s captain. “We welcome all members of the crew; those who have come here to bless our shores and to bring us a little light. Enjoy our little island and be blessed by the warmth and hospitality of our people.” Sir Louis went on: “As we receive from you, we would love to give to you warmth, love, and our gratitude for coming here and bringing this ship… so that our people can be lifted up, receive greater knowledge, help and hope: hope for tomorrow, hope in God, and trust and hope in one another.”
The ship is open to the public in Kingstown until 3 December.