Sunday morning, I dropped in for worship at Lakeview Wesleyan Church in Marion in preparation for the StratOp consultation our team will be providing this coming weekend. It was great to connect with Rev. Tim McClellan and his team. Pastor Tim brought an encouraging message from Philippians 4 on overcoming anxiety. We look forward to serving Pastor Tim and the Lakeview team this weekend.
Sunday evening, I joined with Rev. Dr. Richard Schenck and the leadership team of the congregations in a new network that launched tonight as Circle of Hope. The network includes the congregation of Noblesville Lakeview Wesleyan, Noblesville Gloria el Rey, Beech Grove Wesleyan, Anderson Central Wesleyan, and a new ministry being launched as Circle of Hope at the Indy North campus of IWU. This network also is partnering with Pastor Joshe Bose for a new campus in Dhaka that met today with 20 in attendance.
The network shares a common vision and leadership resources. They will also provide administrative, marketing and financial services at a central location for the congregations. The first step in building this network was when Noblesville Lakeview adopted Beech Grove. At the time, Beech Grove was running in the 20s. This morning, Beech Grove had 42 in attendance. Since then, Anderson Central voted to join the network. Dhaka campus just started meeting this fall and the Indy North IWU campus congregation will begin meeting in January. The combined attendance at their campuses this weekend was 282.
The week began with a quick trip to Maryland to visit with the team for the New Life Network based in LaPlata and led by Pastor Mike Hilson. This is an amazing group of young leaders advancing the Kingdom in the bedroom communities surrounding Washington, DC. I spent Monday with Robert Hilson, network development leader, visiting sites and connecting with campus pastors. On Tuesday, I led the staff devotional for the LaPlata campus and sat in on a variety of staff meetings. I met with Robert Hilson on Wednesday morning for debriefing before flying home in the afternoon.
I was glad to reconnect with Pastor Jordan DeMerchant, one of our own Crossroads team members, who now serves as a New Life campus leader in Alexandria. We’re excited to announce that Pastor Mike and Tina Hilson have agreed to join us for ReEquip, our district-wide training day, on April 6.
Thursday morning, I joined with Assistant DS Chris Williams and our pastors in Region 3 for our fall meeting hosted by Rev. Ollie Dongell and the team at Plymouth Wesleyan Church. Chris brought a great leadership lesson on finishing well in ministry. It was good to hear how God is at work in this region and to welcome Rev. Matt Ohime, Davis Wesleyan Church, as the newest member of the team.
Several of our Grant County pastors joined me for a supper meeting on Thursday evening with one of our Global Partners medical missionaries who serves effectively in restricted access fields in Asia. It was encouraging and challenging to hear how God is at work in the most challenging of circumstances. Thank you to our pastors and churches that prioritize financial and prayer support for our Global Partners missionaries.
Friday, I met with Pastor Ben Capshaw for our annual coaching conversation. It was inspiring to hear how God is blessing at Elwood Central Wesleyan Church under Pastor Ben’s leadership. They thrived in spite of being forced out of their worship facility due to a structural issue that required replacing the entire roof. They even grew while meeting in their fellowship hall. The church has more than doubled in size in the past 3 years and they have recorded 31 professions of faith so far this year.
Saturday morning, I attended the fall meeting of the Fairmount Camp Board of Directors under the leadership of David Tippey, chair. Angela Spangler, Executive Director of Fairmount Camp, reported on another successful summer of camping ministry and expanding rental opportunities.
The Fairmount Camp Board is blessed with a wonderful group of committed and generous volunteers. You’ll be hearing more from this team as they move forward with enhanced marketing and fundraising initiatives.
Our prayers and sympathies are extended to Rev. and Mrs. Charles Moorer on the passing of Chadwin Timothy Moorer (age 23), their son and a beloved student at Indiana Wesleyan University where he had served as chaplain in Kem Hall. The funeral will take place at Divine Direction Christian Church in Indianapolis on Wednesday, November 7.
We also extend our prayers and sympathies to Mrs. Ruth Bickel and the family of Mr. Jack Bickel, long-time lay leader of The Wesleyan Church in Muncie, who passed away on Thursday evening at the age of 89. Jack was a leading proponent of helping to launch Rising Hope Church. Jack was also father to Rev. Dan Bickel, a former pastor in our district and who now serves as the Wisconsin District Superintendent. His funeral will be held on Tuesday, November 6, at Union Chapel Ministries.
Congratulations to Rev. Dr. Jim Dunn and his new bride, Wendy Agner Dunn, on their wedding this past Friday evening. Dr. Dunn, a member of our district family, serves at the Wesleyan Investment Foundation as Vice President of Church Relations.
I’m looking forward to coaching conversations this week and preparing for the StratOp consultation this weekend at Marion Lakeview. Your prayers are always appreciated.
Keep on making a difference in the cause that counts for eternity!
Your servant in Christ,