John was raised on the beaches of central Florida, first in Ormond Beach before moving to Indialantic in the summer of 1965. He graduated from Mel-Hi in 1972 and Florida State in 1976. He then spent the next 29 years in Texas as a marine biologist with the Univ. of Texas in Galveston (another barrier island!). His specialty was the biology and life history of squids, cuttlefishes and octopuses throughout the world.
He was raised a Methodist by his two Christ-following parents who celebrated 75 years of marriage before going to be with the Lord. They raised him in the admonition of the Lord and though he strayed from the church after college, he never could escape the call of the Holy Spirit to return. Regrettably it took the failure of a marriage to break him and totally surrender his life to Christ. Five years of trying different churches eventually led him to Calvary Chapel of Houston in 1998, where the expositional line by line study of God’s Word revolutionized his heart.
After leading the Singles ministry for 3yrs, he took an early retirement and went on staff at CC-Houston taking on multiple other church duties while being in training for ordination as a pastor. By this time he had met and married Opal through their involvement in the church. Their testimony of God’s power includes her being diagnosed with late stage leukemia just 18 months after being married. But God brought her through two bone marrow transplants and today she stands beside John in supporting the ministry of Calvary Surfside. John was ordained in 2006 and he and Opal moved back to Indialantic to care for his parents so they could live out their days in their beachside home.
A couple of years prior to moving back to Florida, the Lord put it on John’s heart to one day plant a Calvary on the beachside. To be sure this was God’s call, John and Opal first became actively involved at Calvary Melbourne, leading the Singles ministry and serving in marital counseling, prayer counselors and oversight of a large food distribution outreach. However by late spring of 2008, the calling was still strong to step out in faith and plant a small Calvary fellowship in the Indian Harbour Beach area. In September of that year, the Surfside Fellowship was birthed and began Sunday services at De Laura Middle School in Satellite Beach.
After 9 Months, Calvary Surfside was officially affiliated as a Calvary Chapel and moved to a location on A1A which was home for 9+ years and in the summer of 2018, we moved to our present location in Satellite Beach. The Holy Spirit has anointed Pastor John with the gifts of a pastor/shepherd and a passion to teach Gods Word with enthusiasm and relevance which he eagerly shares with this fellowship of believers.
Pastor John is also the Chaplain for the Indian Harbour Beach Volunteer Fire Department. He loves to hang out with Opal, surf, mountain bike and play tennis in his spare time.
John and his wife Opal Forsythe
Calvary Chapel Surfside Satellite Beach
Calvary Chapel Indian Harbour Beach location 2009 to 2018
DeLaura Middle School location 2008