The Words of the Sapp Family

University of North Florida Honors John Sapp

Jim Flynn
September 7, 2009

Dear UPF-USA coordinators,

I would like to share an inspiring report about the impact made by one of our blessed families in the UPF-USA mission. Our UPF USA District Secretary General for District 5 is Richard Sapp; he and his wife Barbara are an 1800 couple. Their oldest child is John Edwin Sapp. John is a very dynamic and heartistic young man, who, in his relatively short physical life, made a strong positive impact on the lives of many people, especially the University of North Florida community. John was a student and then staff member at the university when he passed to the spirit world in October of 2007.

Recently the University had the ribbon cutting ceremony for its new $50 million Student Center Building, to which Richard and Barbara Sapp were invited. Although no building or room had previously been dedicated to honor a student or staff member, the Student Government fought a hard, and winning, battle to have a new Conference Room named in honor of John Sapp. Thus, the "John E. Sapp Conference Room" is now being used by many students on a daily basis.

Howard Self, who spoke at John's Seung Hwa ceremony, explains his experience with John:

"I met John in 1999, when he helped me to set up and prepare for the Pure Love Alliance tour (with 300 blessed teens) which began in Florida and then went on to many other states. I was struck by the way that he could win over all types of people in just a few minutes. He has a particularly sharp mind and sense of humor, and yet such a deep genuine humility, that no matter how forward he was with people, no one ever took offense. John made me laugh so many times. At John's Seung Hwa, so many people testified to how wonderful a person he was, and how he helped them in some very real way. These included high level administrators, neighbors and students. Most moving to me was the fact that 3 different students testified that John was their very best friend in the world...and they were each of a different, yellow and white! Each of them explained why John was his best friend in detail. In short, he had cared deeply and helped each one in a great way. He had practiced the Principle by living it."

As an indication of the impact John made at the University of North Florida, not only was the conference room dedicated to his memory, but the University also established an annual scholarship in his honor. Richard and Barbara were inundated by students and faculty at the ribbon cutting...all wanting to tell about some personal episode with John.

Richard and Bob Ouellette (our UPF-USA coordinator for Florida) are carrying on the spirit and effort at the University by planning an event for the UN International Day of Peace in the new Student Center's "Intercultural Center for Peace". We all expect John to be there in full force. We are very thankful for the moving example of service and heart of the Sapp family!

Jim Flynn 

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