It was a joy three years ago to be invited to join the Ludhiana CMC US Board, and now it is an even greater joy to serve as your new executive director. With deepest appreciation for the faithful leadership of Roberta Jones, I received the mantle of leadership as Dr. Dorothy Barbo transferred it from her shoulders to mine during the May Ludhiana CMC US Board meeting. I was born in Mussoorie, India, in 1949 where my parents were serving as missionaries from Missouri. I left India in 1967 to attend college and seminary. At college I met and married Sally Spickelmier, and together we have visited India many times. We had planned to also serve as missionaries in India but were not granted visas for such service. So, after 40 years of serving in the US it is a real joy to be serving the country of my birth in this special way. I thank you all so very much for the opportunity to do so. While in the United States the past 40 years I have served as pastor of churches, director of campus ministries, and most recently as director of missions for the Missouri Conference of the United Methodist Church. After joining the board Sally and I visited Ludhiana in October 2009 and were so very impressed by the amazing educational and medical work being carried out there and by the dedication and commitment of the faculty and staff.
We are grateful to Dr. Abraham Thomas for extending gracious hospitality to us and for his tremendous administrative skill and commitment which has once again put Ludhiana CMC on such solid footings.
Since that first visit I have returned to Ludhiana CMC three times. Sally has now visited twice, and our daughter, Laura, has visited once. On one of my trips I took along five friends from Missouri who have since been busy raising funds and speaking on behalf of Ludhiana CMC.
I am grateful to Missouri United Methodist Church, where Sally and I worship, for contributing over $14,000 to Ludhiana CMC over the past three years and to the members of the Missouri Conference, who have contributed over $41,000 in the past three years.
Missouri United Methodist Church recently sponsored a benefit dinner for Ludhiana CMC called “A Taste of India.” A three minute YouTube video about this event is available here. Also, see the video that my daughter wrote the script for by clicking here.
I started serving as your staff person on July 1, 2012. Sally and I will spend the month of September at Ludhiana CMC where we will receive another group of visitors from the U.S.