The Office of the Chaplain United States House of Representatives

Reverend Fred T. Simms

Heart of God Ministries
Beckley, WV

Sponsor: Rep. Nick Rahall, (D-WV)
Date of Prayer: 04/14/2010

One Minute Speech Given in Recognition of the Guest Chaplain:

Mr. RAHALL. Madam Speaker, it is my pleasure to welcome to the House of Representatives our guest chaplain today, Bishop Fred T. Simms , D.D., pastor and founder of the Heart of God Ministries in my hometown of Beckley, West Virginia.

It is an honor to have such a distinguished West Virginian here with us today, and it is particularly fitting to have Bishop Simms join us in offering the morning prayer on behalf of our Congress and our Nation on this somber day. Today we will act on a congressional resolution honoring the courageous miners who lost their lives in the tragic explosion at the Upper Big Branch Mine and recognize the heroic actions of the rescue teams who also risked life and limb to search for the missing miners.

Bishop Simms was called to the ministry and preached his first message in December, 1977. Since that time, Bishop Simms has continued his Biblical studies through Aenon Bible College and the Institute of Biblical Studies in Lynchburg, Virginia. He received his doctorate of divinity degree from the St. Thomas Christian College in 2008. He has received numerous awards for his community service, which includes the Citizen of the Year award from the Mountain State Bar Association, Mountain State University's School of Leadership and Professional Development's Living Leadership award, and recognized by the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Holiday Commission of the State of West Virginia with its "Sharing of Self" award.

Bishop Simms, one of eight children born to George Simms and Audrey Simms Totten, is married to Marilyn Staples Simms, and the father of five daughters and 11 grandchildren. His greatest strength perhaps may be his humbleness of heart and his ability to become less, so that God gets all the glory. He teaches his congregation by example, as he lives what he preaches.

Bishop Simms' two mottos are, "It's not about Fred T., but about God," and "Come on, let's have church."

Madam Speaker, I am pleased to honor Bishop Fred Simms today, and proud that he gave our invocation.

Opening Prayer Given by the Guest Chaplain:

Father, bless, we pray you, the leaders of this nation. Strengthen the courage of the representatives in Congress – sincere men and women who want to do right, if only they can be sure what is right. Make it plain Father. Release the same Spirit of wisdom and unity that brought these fifty states together to form this great United States of America, to fall fresh on this great governing body as they make decisions affecting over three hundred million Americans.

Father at this time we join our hearts, minds, and spirits for our fellow miners and families in West Virginia who have suffered great loss in the midst of tragedy. Out of the depths of our present grief and helplessness we cry unto Thee, praying that Thou will draw near unto us, and let the light of Thy countenance shine upon us during this dark hour of time. In Jesus name, Amen.

To learn more about Members who have sponsored a Guest Chaplain, please visit the Congressional Biographical Directory