At the age of 39 pastor Simon Lawton met his biological father for the first time. Now he has put his amazing story into print.
Eighteen years ago, Elim minister Simon Lawton plucked up the courage to begin searching for his biological father following an encouraging prophetic word. Simon, 54, who is the senior pastor of Newcastle Elim Church, at the Dream Centre, was born and bred in Leicester. He was adopted by a Christian family but always had an urge to search for his lineage.
“I grew up in a Christian home with two siblings, attending church every Sunday and learning about the Christian faith,” he says.
“Our parents were wonderful, godly people but very strict with us. I don’t think my mother realised the war had ended as we still appeared to be on food rations!
“As a teenage boy I began to have an overwhelming desire to know who my real father was. I guess that deepened as I became aware from the adoption forms of who he was – and from the limited description he sounded just like me.
“I believe that most adopted children have something missing. There is a deep sense of longing to know where you have come from and where your roots are. It’s like having something missing from your life – a constant sense of loss and a lack of identity. Before I knew my dad was American I can remember being on holiday or walking through shopping centres as a child wondering ‘is that my dad?’ when someone who looked like me walked past. I felt like there was a gaping hole in my life.
“The little information I had was my dad’s name and that he was an American from Omaha, Nebraska, and had been based at US Airforce in Bruntingthorpe, Leicestershire.
“In January 2001, whilst in Toronto, I received a powerful prophetic word: ‘Everything is right on, knowing who your father is – is important.’
“Following this I started to search in earnest and eventually I found him in the American phone book and rang him. I simply asked him if he was based at Bruntingthorpe in the winter of 1962.