"My beloved spoke, and
said unto me,
Rise up, my love, my fair
one, and come away."
Song of Solomon 2:10
John and Linda flew to Toronto, Canada for their honeymoon. Sarah and
Timmy rode back to Wisconsin with Grandpa and Grandma in John and
Linda's car. Mom and Dad McGhee stayed several extra days in Florida in
order to give the newlyweds time together at their home in Canada.
The first few days of their honeymoon were spent in complete bliss.
After a day or two at John's parents' home, they drove to Algonquin
Park, in northern Ontario and then east to Ottawa, the capital city of
Canada. They walked arm in arm along the Rideau Canal and ate in quaint
little restaurants in downtown historical Ottawa. They visited various
places of interest along the St. Lawrence River on their way back to
All too soon, it was time to fly to Wisconsin, to pick up Timmy and
Sarah, before driving back to Florida.
John gave the US Immigration officer his passport. His heart began to
beat faster after the US Immigrations officer asked him where he was a
resident. (He never did like going through Immigration when traveling
overseas.) He replied, "Ontario."
"How long ago has it been since you last lived in Ontario?" The officer
John thought for a few moments. "Around five years,
"Then you are not a resident of Ontario, Mr.
McGhee, are you?"
That is when John began to stutter and the more that he said the more
the Immigrations officer was convinced that he should not let him cross
the border into the United States of America.
"Sir, your wife is free to enter the United States.
However, you will have to stay in Canada because you do not have a
proper visa for living in the USA."
Linda quickly spoke up and informed the Immigration's officer that she
was not about to leave her husband in Canada! The glint in her eyes and
her firm voice said it all. She would stay with John! However, by that
time, all of their suitcases were already on their way to Wisconsin.
Thus, John and Linda's blissful honeymoon quickly turned
would have to stay in Canada.
The following nine days were filled with high tension. The US Consulate
informed John that he would have to apply for a US visa in order to
obtain his "Green Card". "How long would that take?" he asked.
"At least 6 months, Mr. McGhee" he was told.
John found out from the US Consulate that he needed both of their
original birth certificates, their marriage certificate, their former
spouses' death certificates and former marriage certificates, and
several other important documents. Of course, they did not have any of
these documents on their honeymoon!
They asked their friend, Gideon Bader, to go through their personal
paperwork in Linda's bedroom closet, back in Sanford. The paperwork was
then Overnight mailed to them in Toronto, and thus began the process of
applying for John's US visa.
John also needed a chest x-ray, a physical, visa application photos and
several Canadian references. Advice was freely given by many people,
which included crashing the border. This was too risky, and besides, it
was against the law. They even began making plans to live at the NTM
Canadian Headquarters in Durham, Ontario. Much prayer went up to the
Heavenly Father on their behalf.
Linda's Mom and Dad contacted their US Senator. John contacted his
Canadian Member of Parliament in Ottawa.
John submitted all of his paperwork to the US Embassy. Each day seemed
to crawl by. Then nine days after John had been refused entry to the
USA, he went in for one more interview at the US Consulate. This
interview resulted in some encouragement. He was told that perhaps if
he went to the airport right away and talked with the Immigration
Supervisor, something might be done to help them. They rushed home, and
hastily packed their bags and were off to the airport. This time John's
plea to the Immigration officer went much better.
"Promise me that you will not return to Canada until you
are called by the US Consulate in Toronto for your final interview, Mr.
McGhee, which may be quite a few months from now."
Ahhh...music to the ears!
"Yes, sir, I promise!"
"And one more thing, Mr. McGhee, you cannot work while
you are in the USA."
John promised, and he and Linda gave each other a great big hug.
The flight to Wisconsin went well and they were soon happily reunited
with Timmy and Sarah. The next few days were happily spent visiting
with family and friends. John met Linda's oldest sister and her brother
for the first time. The return trip to Sanford was a happy time. How
thankful they were to their Heavenly Father for allowing John to live in
America while his visa application was being processed.