This was held on Saturday September 19th and the Revd. Brian Barker led the service in his usual way and the hymns were some of John’s favourites. Various friends gave tributes during the service beginning with Keith Rugg who is now at Market Harborough, and told of his meeting with John and the family when they all lived in Sevenoaks, in 1978. They had followed each others progress around the country and then ended up just a few miles from each other.
John trained at Spurgeons College and it was as a student he went to Dormandsland Baptist Church and here he met Beryl who of course became his wife. They then moved to Newhaven and then on to Southampton and Revd. David Hill spoke of John’s spiritual leadership and also his sense of fun. The next move was to Sevenoaks and then to Loughton in Essex and it was during this time that the ﬁrst exchange with Orlando USA took place.
1995 brought John to us at Burton and again we thank God for his preaching, leadership and pastoral care (and of course his fun with the Pantomimes) James then spoke of John’s time in Orlando and the friends both he and Beryl made there and then of the last months of John’s illness. The Revd. Ian Green gave the sermon and told of John’s encouragement to him as his mentor when he, Ian, was student minister at Fuller Kettering. Although it was a sad occasion yet it was also joyful as we heard how John’s humour and fun touched so many lives. We thank God that we had a share in his life and know that many people came to love the Lord through his ministry.