John Vigor's Denaming Ceremony
"In the name of all who have sailed aboard this ship in the past, and in the name of all who may sail aboard her in the future, we invoke the ancient gods of the wind and the sea to favor us with their blessing today.
"Mighty Neptune, king of all that moves in or on the waves; and mighty Aeolus (pronounced EE-oh-lus), guardian of the winds and all that blows before them:
"We offer you our thanks for the protection you have afforded this vessel in the past. We voice our gratitude that she has always found shelter from tempest and storm and enjoyed safe passage to port.
"Now, wherefore, we submit this supplication, that the name whereby this vessel has hitherto been known (_____), be struck and removed from your records.
"Further, we ask that when she is again presented for blessing with another name, she shall be recognized and shall be accorded once again the selfsame privileges she previously enjoyed.
"In return for which, we rededicate this vessel to your domain in full knowledge that she shall be subject as always to the immutable laws of the gods of the wind and the sea.
"In consequence whereof, and in good faith, we seal this pact with a libation offered according to the hallowed ritual of the sea."
After a boat is denamed, you simply need to rename it using the traditional christening ceremony, preferably with Queen Elizabeth breaking a bottle of champagne on the bow, and saying the words:
"I name this ship ___________ and may she bring fair winds and good fortune to all who sail on her."
John Vigor, an Oak Harbor resident, is a boating writer and editor. He is the author of the following books:
Danger, Dolphins & Ginger Beer (Simon & Schuster) a sailing adventure novel for 8 to 12 year-olds.
The Practical Mariner's Book of Knowledge (International Marine)
The Sailor's Assistant (International marine)
For publication in 1999:
The Seaworthy Offshore Sailboat (International Marine)
20 Small Sailboats to Take You Anywhere (Paradise Cay)