Monday, October 6, 2008
I want to be a missionary now!
This is a picture of Bishop John Sims and President Ian Swanney. It was taken in 1975 when Dad and President Swanney went to General Conference in Salt Lake City. Not that I know too much about photography but whoever took this picture was standing way too far away. I would say they didn't use the 'zoom' properly but back in them days the only zoom around was the ice lolly/popsicle. What a good looking pair!
I remember President Swanney very well. He was from York and his wife (Anne) was so cute. They were from Scotland originally, and I loved listening to them speak. I remember they had a daughter called Lorna and a son called David.
One thing my Dad always told us children was that he wished he could have joined the church earlier so he could serve a mission. He looked forward to the day when he and my Mom would serve a mission. I had promised to help support them (financially) so they could go.
That wasn't meant to be. Not in this life anyway. Dad has been a missionary ever since he joined the church. He has always talked about the gospel to his fellowmen. He has never been ashamed to stand up for that which was right. Despite many persecutions and hardships he has always stood firm.
I remember once when I was visiting him in the hospital (when he had bowel cancer), I picked up his bag which was under the bed. I said 'What in the heck have you got in here' and I opened it to see TEN books of Mormon......I looked at him and he said "I am going to give those out whilst I am here." Believe me, when he came home from the hospital, there were no books in his bag. :)
This past Saturday, the wife of a missionary who served in the Hull 2nd ward, posted a comment on this blog. It was so sweet and I just had to share the message. Shannon, thank you from the bottom of my heart for your kindness. This message meant more than you will ever know.
"I have been trying to get my husband to write you a message about your Dad. He served a mission in the Leeds England mission during 1996-1998.
Your Dad was one of his most favorite people there. I have heard many stories about him and how much support he gave to my husband as a missionary. David told me of John always asking him about owing him money and asked where it was. He also told me of what a stud your Dad is.
Still to this day, I hear of this man in England who was so ripped and in such great shape. David has told me of his Rugby days...a real man's game according to your Dad.
David has really enjoyed reading your blog about him. I have added your blog to our blog list for him, so he can keep up on the life of John Sims. I haven't had the pleasure of meeting him, but of what I have heard and read I know that he is one of a kind.
I will try to get David to write his memories of John, but I wanted to write to let you know how important he was to a young missionaries life...Elder Grogan.
With much love, Shannon Grogan