Thankful for Dad 8 Years Later: Wonderful Memories of a Wonderful Man

Eight years ago on Thanksgiving Monday, October 11, 2004, my loving father Larry passed away on the 17th fairway at Burnaby Mountain Golf Course. Not a bad way to go, all things considered! Our family purchased a beautiful memorial bench with a plaque reading: “In loving memory of Larry Imoo. He will always be in our hearts and thoughts.” I take solace in the fact that every golfer who stops to pause at the bench will learn a small bit about my dad.

Usually on or near his death anniversary, we gather with my Mom and brother Jason (and his family) for dinner. This year was no exception, as we had Thanksgiving Dinner at our place on Sunday night. We shared a laugh and a tear over our shabu shabu meal…remembering just how much fun Dad was and all of his amazing qualities: his ability to not take himself too seriously, his unselfishness, and his knack for making everyone around him feel important and special.

I can’t believe that 8 years have passed already. I remember October 11, 2004 so vividly. How we had just returned from the pumpkin patch in anticipation of Halloween. How I was preparing to meet Mom and Dad at my in-laws for Thanksgiving Dinner. How the doorbell rang and how surprised I was to see Father Smith at my door. How he sat me down and how I innocently thought that he was going to confess something to me! How loving, caring, and respectful he was as he shared the horrific news. How I sat in total shock, not believing what I had just heard. How I broke down in passing the news on to my brother over the phone. And how heartbroken I was to find my mom weeping in her living room…the cops had beaten me to the house by a mere two minutes.

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Making a (Mission) Statement

Recently, I’ve been doing work with a few different ministries on the importance of vision and mission.  Both are extremely important:  a vision gives us an idea of where we are going and what success will look like whereas a mission is similar to a road map as to how we may achieve our vision.

During a recent workshop that I facilitated, I had a music ministry do some work on its mission statement.  As part of this process, I also had each of the members craft his or her own mission statement.  It was a very fruitful process as the individuals were able to articulate their strengths, weaknesses and hopes both as individuals and as a group.

I was inspired by the ones that were shared aloud and I encouraged each of them to post it somewhere so they could reflect on it regularly and go back to it when necessary.  As well, I suggested that their mission statements are dynamic – they could change them any time.

I would suggest this process for any ministry (or anyone for that matter) looking to set goals, inspire one another, or keep themselves on track.

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