Preparing to come over Spring 2019

Dear Student,

I expect that as the time approaches for your visit to Greece your anticipation is mounting and many questions are arising.  I hope this will answer most questions and so be helpful to you as you make your plans to come over.

Arrival: You need to make your travel arrangements so as you can be aboard the sailing ship “Encounter” at  Milina (1.5 hours east of the port of Volos) on Saturday, April 13th 2019.

Departure: Please make your departure arrangements from Chalkida, (an hour north of Athens), so as to leave the boat between 09:00 & 12:00 the morning of Friday, May 31st  2019.  It should be noted that flights on this day should be arranged so as to give you time to get to the relevant airports.

Note! Please do not assume the boat will be in port after the arrival time or before the departure time indicated above! It is important you arrive and depart on time.  It is understood that in signing up for this course, you agreed to be here from start to finish.

Getting to Milina

There are 5 buses a day from Volos KTEL bus terminal to Milina.  These are at; 04:00, 10:15, 12:30, 14:30, 16:30.  Please let us know your arrival time in Volos and which bus you hope to catch when you know.  You can email me at theo@torchbearers.gr or call/message +30 6973317166

Visas

Students from Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand and the USA, do not need a visa to enter Greece for a duration shorter than 3 months. Students from the European Union do not need a visa at all. All students from countries outside the above mentioned must check with the Greek embassy or consulate in their home country to see what may be required as regards a visa before coming to Greece.

What to bring

  • Towels, personal toiletries, small flashlight, mosquito spray.
  • Bed sheets (the hostel sleeping bag type is best and can be found at camping stores in silk so as they are super light, compact and quick drying) and pillowcase, (have two sets so as one can be washed) we provide a blanket and pillow, however if you desire to sleep on deck at times, a sleeping bag would be good as no boat bedding is allowed on deck, it would be good to have a sleeping bag in any case due to the possibility of cool nights and also for the 24 hour solo opportunity you will have on a deserted island.
  •  Wind-proof jacket/rain gear
  • Soft and comfortable shoes for onboard wear
  • Gloves for handling ropes
  • Non-cotton clothing is preferred such as fleece or wool (as cotton does not easily dry).  You can expect daytime temperatures to be around 20 -30 deg. Celsius, night temperature drops to approx. 15 – 25 deg. Celsius.  For washing, some Laundromats are available and will cost you around 8 – 10 Euro per load, but most washing will be by hand, your hands at that 🙂 so bring lightweight easy to wash items that dry fast as dryers are not available.
  • Swimsuit, sunglasses, sun hat, sun cream
  • Small daypack for day trips
  • Bible, notebook and pen
  • Your supply of Personal medication, you may find it hard to find medicine you require here.
  • International driver’s license (apply at home country), will be required to drive in Greece.  You also need to be over 21 and have held your license for at least a year, and a motorcycle license to rent a motorcycle/moped.
  • Student ID card, useful for discounts esp. into museums and archaeological sites
  • Valid medical/accident insurance
  • Extra cash for souvenirs etc…however ATMs are easily found in most places we’ll visit

   What NOT to bring

Computers, hairdryers, shavers or any other electrical gadgets,  (we’ll take no responsibility for water damage to any item), Camera’s are OK and can be charged aboard.  Do not bring hard cased luggage as stowage will not be possible.  You should not have more than what fits in a 60-litre backpack and should not exceed 20 kilos.  Available space to stow your things is very, very limited!

Some things you may like to know:

Accommodation:

On board will be in twin or triple cabins for the lads and a 7 berth cabin forward for the ladies.  We usually have 6 male and 6 female students, one lecturer at a time 2 crew, a cook and skipper making up a total of 17 persons aboard at any one time.

Meals:

will be of international cuisine with a tendency to Greek dishes.  We cannot cater to special dietary needs.  You may like to supplement meals with your own goodies, however, the fridge, freezer or cooker will not be available to students. (space is limited).

Communications:

Via phone or internet will be possible from time to time (possibly on a weekly basis).  Wifi at cafés are plentiful in towns we’ll visit.  Further messages may be passed on to you through the ships phone which is +30 6973317166 but no conversing on this phone is possible.

Dress code:

Is casual and neat.  You will find people your age in the cities usually dress up, so you may like to bring something nice for going out, otherwise, on board, loose easy wear casual and modest clothing is best. 

Extra costs:

Maybe things like personal toiletries, snack foods, drinks, ice-cream, souvenirs etc… These costs are similar to or possibly a little more expensive than in North America.  Further costs may be for communications, laundry or optional travel.

Getting money:

Is possible through the many ATMs or banks in all the cities we’ll visit.  Having a credit or debit card will be most convenient for this.  The currency here is Euro which is approx. 1.10 USD.

Visitors:

Will not be able to join us during the course, unfortunately, due to limited space and what tends to be a distraction.

Some expectations we’ll have:

To receive a certificate of satisfactorily completing the course you will be required to participate fully in all aspects of the course attending from start to end date.  This includes attending all lectures, completing all assignments and involved in the outreaches and tours as scheduled, and being diligent to complete well any projects assigned.  Various colleges in North America do give credits for the courses we offer.  We’ll give those that complete the course a course outline with hours spent on each subject; however, we do not grade students.

Behaviour:

We aim to maintain the highest standards of Christian behaviour.  Though primarily because of one’s commitment to the Lord Jesus, we also recognise that the behaviour of each individual is important because of its effect on our life together.  We request that you do not pursue exclusive relationships as this usually seriously affects the value of the course not only for the individuals concerned but also for the entire, student body.  Behaviour that we consider inappropriate will be addressed, and where this is not satisfactorily resolved, may be the basis of termination of studies.

Bibles, books etc…  You will need an English translation as opposed to a paraphrased Bible.  Many lecturers use the New International Version.  For study purposes, you may desire to bring a concordance or other study helps, in electronic form is best.  Please note we do not have a library or bookshop to facilitate you.  You will need to bring your own pens paper etc. for note taking and assignments.

Sport and Recreation:

Will be possible and is encouraged.  You will be required to pursue exercise units which equate to approx 4 hours of exercise per week, so bring along required clothing and footwear.

Crew duties will be required of everyone to keep things ship-shape, as well as all hands, will be required to sail and moor the boat.

Day Schedule

07:00 –  08:00

Personal prep & devotional

60 min

08:00 – 08:30

Morning duties

30 min

08:30 – 09:00

Breakfast

30 min

09:00 – 09:45

Personal prep. & dishes

45 min

09:45 – 10:30

Lecture 1

45 min

10:30 – 10:45

Break

15 min

10:45 – 11:30

Lecture 2

45 min

11:30 –  12:00

Snack break

30 min

12:00 – 12:45

Lecture 3

45 min

12:45 – 13:15

Reflection & prayer

30 min

13:30 – 14:00

Lunch

30 min

14:00 – 14:30

Dishwashing and laundry

30 min

14:30 – 15:30

Siesta – quiet hour

60 min

15:30 – 18:30

Free time incl. exercise, sports and assignments

180 min

18:30 – 19:00

Dinner

30 min

19:00 – 19:30

Clean up

30 min

19:30 – 21:00

Lecture 4 or small group meetings

90 min

21:00 – 22:30

Free time

90 min

22:30 – 23:00

Prep for rest

30 min

23:00 – 07:00

Rest

8 hrs +

 

The above schedule will be broken up with sailings usually after or sometimes before lunch to our various destinations. Sundays will usually be free days ending with our Sunday evening worship service aboard.  Tours to the various sites will be taking place during the week and so lectures that day are moved to the following day.

Each visiting lecturer will usually be staying with us for the whole week and would be available for personal counselling or questioning in regards to the course material or even in general relating to issues of the Christian life.

 

 

Course Outline

Week

Subject/s

Location

Tours

Start

Orientation / Sail Training / Greek  History & language

Volos Gulf

Sail training

2

Steps toward spiritual maturity

Volos Gulf

Meteora Monasteries

3

Philippians

Sporades islands

service week isl. Property

4

Corinthians

Volos

Ancient Philippi

5

Corinthians

North Evoikos

Ancient Corinth

Delfi (optional)

6

Person and Work of the Holy Spirit

North Evoikos

Solo

End

Hot seat / Debrief

Halkida

Athens (optional)

 

Please note that things are subject to change due to the variables encountered in life aboard ship and you will not necessarily be informed of such beforehand, however, every effort will be made to do so if at all possible.

We are looking forward to this time together and trust the Lord will prepare you for this encounter with Him.  Should you have further questions please don’t hesitate to ask.