SMNZ: Who we are

Seafarers transport more than 95% of the food and goods the world uses every day, and yet these 1.3 million hardworking men and women are often forgotten.

Stella Maris NZ also known as the Apostleship of the Sea, promotes the spiritual welfare of Catholic seafarers and the social welfare of all seafarers irrespective of nationality or belief.

Away from family and friends for many months at a time, working long hours and navigating some of the world’s most dangerous stretches of ocean, seafaring can be a tough, lonely and hazardous career.

As well as their spiritual welfare, SMNZ helps seafarers and fisherfolk to meet their basic needs. These include

  • a safe haven when in port
  • communication with family and friends
  • recreation while ashore
  • genuinely warm welcome
  • a spiritual oasis.

SMNZ is part of a network under the umbrella of the Dicastery for Integral Human Development.

In New Zealand, SMNZ provides an outreach to seafarers and fisherfolk in the ports of Auckland, Tauranga, Napier, Wellington and Lyttleton.

Throughout New Zealand, SMNZ is under the sponsorship of the Bishop in each Diocese and is staffed by Catholic volunteers.

Cardinal John Dew is the AoS Episcopal Promoter, overseeing the work of the National Director, Fr Jeff Drane SM.

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