Port Ministry

Bethesda’s Port Ministry provides a special outreach to seafarers and maritime workers while visiting our Palm Beach ports. Many of the ships visiting the port are ships which often stay in port for only a few (12-24) hours. The Port of Palm Beach is the 18th busiest container port in the U.S. and sees thousands of seafarers every year. These seafarers and maritime workers are responsible for transporting 80% of all the products used within the United States; and they spend months and sometimes years, away from home. Our Port Ministry lead by The Rev. Clayton Waddell is dedicated to greeting and caring for these seafarers coming from countries all over the world. This ministry to seafarers is one of hospitality, and though we do not seek to convert seafarers, we do attend to their spiritual needs which often, by request, include services with Holy Communion on the ships.

Bethesda’s parishioners participate in this ministry by knitting caps, collecting toiletries during the summer, writing and sending the seafarers cards, donating funds to pay for calling cards, purchasing white socks, and sending care packages while they are away during holidays.

Save Your Samples

As you travel, remember to save the small soaps, shampoos, conditioners, lotions, etc. found in your hotel room. Every year Bethesda’s Port Ministry arranges hundreds of gift bags for sailors who are at sea on Christmas Day. We will be collecting your items in fall.


If you would like to learn more or get involved in this ministry, contact Deacon Clay Waddell, Deacon for Port Ministry, at (561) 655-4555 x130.

141 South County Road, Palm Beach, Florida 33480 | (561) 655-4554

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