Passed away peacefully on Sunday, October 3, 2021 at the Greater Niagara General Hospital.
John Sider was born into a simple farm life on Perry Road in the Township of Wainfleet.
He knew early on that he was not cut out for farming and planned to become a teacher. After doing a short preparatory course at McMaster University, he taught for several years in small rural one-room schoolhouses.
His life in rural Southern Ontario was turned upside down when he decided through some encouragement, to go to college in the States. Messiah College was a small Christian liberal arts college in rural Pennsylvania. It was here he met Mum.
Together John R. and Ethel left their farming roots and created lives and a family together in places like New Mexico, Bihar (India), Southern Ontario, Guatemala, Mexico City, back in India, and finally a return to Ontario.
John was a pastor. I would characterize his approach to pastoring as ‘being with others’. Like his father before him, he was a man of few works. He didn’t ever say a lot, except when he preached on Sunday, but he faithfully went where there were others in need and spent time with them. He spent hours visiting people in the hospital. A favourite recollection is one that probably occurred many times but always had a similar story-line. John would be a bed-side on one side of a hospital room curtain. He would finish his visit with a prayer and by the time he finished, there would be a call from the other side of the curtain, “padre, when you’re done there, can you come and pray for me too?”. It never occurred to John that his parishioners were limited to those that came to his church.
Together, Dad and Mum touched many, many lives, around the globe.
John was preceded in death by his wife of sixty-one years, Ethel. John leaves behind a brother Ralph (Iris), three children, Anna (Darrell), Mark (Jane) and Jennie (Terry), eleven grandchildren, Samuel (Christina), Abbie, Jesse, Hannah (Auggie), Margaret (Jose), Charlotte, Evan (Hayley), Aria, Sara (Mack), Amy (Jon), and Laura. And one great-grandson, Johnny.
John’s family will receive visitors on Wednesday, October 6, 2021 at the Wainfleet Be In Christ Church, 53007 Perry Road (at Hwy#3), Wainfleet, Ontario from 5-7 p.m. The funeral service will be held at the church on Thursday at 11 a.m. with a private burial at Maple Lawn Cemetery prior to the service. Due to COVID restrictions, attendance will be monitored for capacity, gathering limits will be enforced and facemasks are required for the visitation and service. All guests MUST register with the church to attend the funeral service. Link available at wainfleetbic.info
If so desired, memorial donations may be made to BIC Canada Global or the Wainfleet BIC Church.