John didn’t neglect his civic responsibilities in Nauvoo. His election to the City Council, and appointment to be a member of the Board of Regents for the Nauvoo University, kept him very busy. He attained the rank of colonel in the Nauvoo Legion, and the Prophet also asked him to be the associate editor of the Times and Seasons newspaper.
John’s writing skills enabled him to present a timely outline of the Church’s stand on political issues, and put down negative arguments with literary style. The Saints also loved his humor. He told of a man who lost his leg and had an artificial one made. The limb was so precisely carved that when the man got his wooden foot wet, he came down with a cold.