Thank you for your prayers and expressions of support as our family gathered in New Brunswick, Canada for the last few days of my father’s life. Dad was promoted to glory early on Saturday morning, September 17. Rev. Dr. Ken Gorveatte served three congregations in the Crossroads District over the course of his ministry including Lifeway Church in Fort Wayne (formerly Moeller Road Wesleyan), LifeSpring Church (formerly Fountain City Wesleyan), and, after retiring, Brinker Heights in Marion. He also taught as adjunct religion faculty at Indiana Wesleyan University and served Kingswood University both in administration and as a faculty member.
We celebrated his life on Sunday afternoon, September 18 at Beulah Camp with Atlantic DS Peter Moore and Pastor Jay Guptill officiating. Dr. Laurel Buckingham shared memories from their 60+ years of friendship and Rev. Joel Gorveatte, my younger brother and missionary to Manhattan, shared the message from God’s Word. We are grateful for the blessing of Dad’s life and are humbled to carry on his legacy of faithful ministry.
Sunday morning, September 25, I had the privilege of representing our district team and praying for Rev. Seth Bye and the launch team members at 317Church in Avon. Some of you may be familiar with the journey in Avon as Seth and Cassidy have answered the call to relaunch a new Kingdom community in this growing region of our state.
Hendricks is the 3rd fastest growing county in Indiana and Pastor Seth estimates that there are as many as 100,000 unreached people in their immediate harvest field. Seth and his launch team have been serving in the neighborhood and building relationships in preparation for their “grand opening” next Sunday, October 2. If you have unchurched friends or relatives in the Avon community, consider sharing this Facebook link:
On my way to worship with the team at 317Church, I was able to drop in on Pastor Mike Colaw and the team at Trinity Wesleyan Church for their 9:00 service at their Allisonville Road campus. It was good to connect with Pastor Mike, Leslie, and other friends. In addition to leading a growing church and a young family, Rev. Colaw is completing his Doctor of Ministry degree at Wesley Seminary and serves as our Crossroads District representative on the Indiana Wesleyan University Board of Trustees.
REMINDER: Our next Crossroads District prayer gathering of the fall will be hosted this Sunday evening, October 2, with Rev. Theo Griffin and the team at Greenfield Brown’s Chapel. The prayer gathering will begin promptly at 6 and is scheduled to conclude at 7 p.m. We’d welcome you to join us and bring friends as we focus our prayer on revival in our own lives, our churches, and our nation. There is power in united prayer!
After arriving home from Canada on Monday evening, I was excited to meet with my colleagues who lead the other districts in the Heartland Region. Rev. Les Crossfield (Greater Ohio DS), and Rev. Aaron Sherman (KY-TN DS) joined me in welcoming Rev. Doug Preston (Indiana South DS) as the newest member of our regional leadership team. We met at LifeLine Wesleyan Church, the congregation that Doug had pastored in Greensburg, Indiana. We reviewed the progress of our regional collaboration and approved moving forward on the 2024 Heartland Gathering in Pigeon Forge!
Wednesday, the district office staff met in Marion and I then traveled on for a coaching conversation with Chris Granados who is serving as our supply pastor at Monte de Sion Wesleyan Church in Indianapolis. Chris was excited to share that they welcomed 127 people, a full house, for their church’s anniversary service earlier this month.
Thursday, our Crossroads DBA (District Board of Administration) met at Autumn Hills Wesleyan Church in Pendleton. In addition to the regular matters that come before the DBA, we had the privilege of hearing ministry updates from church planters Rev. Andy Riemersma (Westfield ONE Church) and Rev. Seth Bye (Avon 317Church).
The DBA also approved a recommendation to elect Rev. Carla Working as Assistant DS and for her to serve as Chair of the DBMD. Dr. Chris Williams will continue to serve as ViceChair of the DBA and the Assistant District Superintendent for initiatives like our Next Level experience.
Thursday evening, I traveled to Plymouth Wesleyan Church to meet with the LBA (Local Board of Administration) as they begin the search process for their next pastor. Dr. Oliver Dongell has served effectively for 20 years, and while he won’t be slowing down much in retirement, he felt that this was the year to pass the baton of leadership. Pray for the LBA as they seek to discern God’s will for this most important decision.
Friday morning and afternoon, I had the joy of sharing with Dr. Jim Lo in his ministry classes at Indiana Wesleyan University. The students were very responsive and in the afternoon class session we had a special time of prayer for prospective church planters.
Friday evening, Sherry and I were delighted to welcome our first Friday Fellowship for the fall. Rev. Grace Lopez and Rev. Neftali Lopez (Circuit Rider for Hispanic churches), Rev. Elizabeth Rhyno and Rev. Scott Rhyno (Waterline Church), Rev. Ron and Faye Ferguson (Grant City Wesleyan), Rev. Eric and Diana George (Muncie Memorial), and Rev. Aldean and Jessie Pablo (Roanoke Arise Church) joined us for a blessed evening of food, fellowship, laughter, and prayer.
Saturday’s schedule included meeting with Dr. Rich Schenck and the Intercultural Ministry Task Force for breakfast and a working session in Indianapolis. Two of the ladies from this task force were unfortunately unable to attend this session. This is a fun team helping us think more strategically about the missional opportunities around us here in Indiana.
I traveled back to Marion to drop in and thank Rev. Bob Burchell and the DBMD team that he leads for their investment in our ministerial students. After lunch with Bob’s team, I jumped over to the IWU football game in time to hear that Dr. David Wright, retired president, was being inducted as Indiana’s newest Sagamore of the Wabash, awarded to citizens who have contributed greatly to the heritage of our state. Congratulations, Dr. Wright! The Wildcats improved their record to 2-1 with the 63-6 victory over Trinity International University.
Welcome to Max Colaw as the newest member of the Crossroads District ministerial family. Max was born last week to Rev. Andrew and Kaitlyn (Weinmann) Colaw. Andrew is the youth pastor at Sheridan Six Points Church and Kaitlyn is an RN at Riverview Health. Max shares his name with his great grandfather, retired Tri-State District Superintendent, Rev. Max Colaw. Mother and child are both at home and doing well!
We’re also praising the Lord for stories of new spiritual life across our district. Pastor Brent Miller and the team at Gas City Southside Church celebrated six baptisms yesterday!
Pastor Andy Riemersma and the team at Westfield ONE Church celebrated another baptism yesterday!
Rev. Dan Fisher and the team at Delphi Wesleyan Church celebrated four baptisms last week! God is on the move and lives are being #MadeNew!
I’ve been looking forward to this week for months. Friday, September 30, we are partnering with College Wesleyan Church and Wesley Seminary to hold our first “Celebration of Holiness” seminar. We have a great lineup of speakers for this one-day event and the $20 registration fee includes your meal and Kevin Watson’s new book, Perfect Love. Don’t miss these inspiring and informative presentations on the doctrine that John Wesley called “the grand depositum which God has lodged with the people called Methodists…”
Note: This event is open to pastors, lay leaders, and ministerial students. Here’s the link to register: https://www.crossroadsdistrict.org/holiness.html
Keep on making a difference in the cause that counts for eternity!
Your servant in Christ,
Crossroads District Superintendent