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18.08.2018 03:50:37 227x read.
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Report General Chapter Denekamp Thursday, 16th August 2018.

Report General Chapter Denekamp

Thursday, 16th August 2018


Today was a sightseeing outing. We left Denekamp immediately after our breakfast at about 09:16 hours.

MEYER WERFT, PAPENBURG-GERMANY


The first place we visited was MEYER WERFT, (in Papenburg), a shipbuilding company in Germany.

Founded in 1795, Papenburg-based MEYER WERFT has meanwhile been owned by the seventh generation of the Meyer family. This well-established company has some 3,300 employees. MEYER WERFT’s extensive production program covers a wide range of ship types, from cruise ships, gas tankers and passenger ferries. In order to stay successful in worldwide competition, production technology has been continuously extended. Today, MEYER WERFT has the most modern production premises in the shipbuilding industry.

Building cruise ships is a particularly complex task compared to other industries. One cruise ship is a highly complex, large-scale project that must satisfy customer requirements as well as meet stringent safety regulations. Each cruise ship is made of more than 10 million individual parts and assemblies, compared to about one million parts for today’s largest passenger airplanes and about 10,000 parts for a car. The complexity, diversity and large volume of data involved require efficient solutions to design and build ships that stand out from those of competitors. Meyer Werft can efficiently manage this complexity while ensuring high quality standards that, ultimately, help its cruise line customers offer a best-in-class passenger experience.

It was a very enjoyable two-hour tour, including a view of the ships in progress. It is an insightful experience and a well worth visit. A perfect place for a company of friends. After the shipyard tour, we had our Lunch together at the Gasthof Tepe restaurant in Aschendorf, about 6 km away from Papenburg, Germany.

BOURTANGE FORTRESS

The next  tourist site we visited was the Bourtange fortress in The Netherlands -also referred to as the fortress that was never conquered - a unique historical defences which is without comparison.

Rich in history, Vesting Bourtange dates back to 1580 when Willem van Oranje ordered an entrenchment to be built with five bastions near the Dutch-German border. Build on a sandy ridge or ‘tange’ (in Dutch) it was completed in 1593. Over the centuries it was continually reinforced but over time it eventually lost its military status and was dismantled by 1851. Since then it has grown into an agricultural village which is teeming with history. Bourtange is located southeast of Groningen, not far from the German border, making it a fun day trip if you are in the area. Its cobblestone roads, historic canons and wooden drawbridges allow your imagination to wander back in time.

 

We spend our time walking around the high ridges that line the village, a water canal on one side and the town in the centre. Stunning views and fields as far as the eye could see made us feel as if we really were protected from the rest of the world. Visiting Bourtange, you walk through the so called ‘Vriesse gate’ or ‘Münsterse gate’, depending on which way you enter, following the road to the picturesque Marketplace. This square is surrounded by fourteen 300 years old lemon trees. Along with museums, Bourtange also has an Inn which would allow you to actually stay overnight and enjoy the fortress for a little bit longer. We made sure to visit the “candle maker” and also enjoyed watching the residents having their relaxation in the gardens. We eventually made our way to the centre square where there were several restaurants available.

The tour continued with the Protestant Church, the Jewish Synagogue and windmill and then a little relaxing time to watch the swans go by. The video makes it look massive, but in all reality, it was quite a bit smaller than we expected. In this small cosy village (Bourtange), the present day and past centuries go together perfectly giving you a sense of appreciation of one’s own historical and cultural background. Regardless, it was a beautiful place to visit and a great way to expose young people to history. No theme parks, no rides, just exploring and wandering the streets of this century’s old fortress. I highly recommend Bourtange for family outing.

We left Bourtange at 17:38 hours arriving in De Lutte-Loser at about 18:50 hours, where we took our supper together in the Cafe-Restaurant Keet'n Zwart. At 21:00 hours we left the restaurant (Keet’n Zwart) and arrived in Denekamp at 21:20 hours. That was how we spent the day.

BRIEF REFLECTION ON BEING TOGETHER

OUTING is one of the ways of expressing our fraternal solidarity with one another. As it is said in our Constitutions: “being together in hours of relaxation… is a sign of unity” (Article 45). Thanks a lot to Bro. Lo Koeleman for the practical arrangements he put in place to make the outing successful and joyful.

By Bro. Remy Nyukorong








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