Sunday, June 7, I was with Pastor Harold Henson and the team at Colfax Wesleyan Church. Rev. Henson is another of our faithful bi-vocational pastors who combines ministry in the pulpit with ministry in the marketplace. Last week was their first week worshiping back in the building after the pandemic restrictions.
I appreciated the opportunity to preach and then to lead the local church conference as Colfax Wesleyan voted to renew Pastor Henson’s call for four more years. We are grateful for the leadership that Pastor Harold and Angie have brought in returning to their home church.
The road to Colfax allowed me to drop in on Pastor Johnnie Blair and Pastor Amanda Blair as their team was rehearsing to lead worship for their online service. In addition to her local church leadership, I am grateful that Pastor Amanda also makes time to serve on our District Board of Administration.
Frankfort is the last stop before Colfax so I was able to check in on Pastor Alan Downing at Connecting Point Church. It was also good to get to see Dr. Ernest Batman, one of our retired district superintendents, who is an active member of this congregation. The team at Connecting Point has been hard at work remodeling the auditorium and they just put the finishing touches on their fellowship hall last week. Their next project is upgrading their kitchen to better serve their community.
After the morning service in Colfax, I was able to make it back to Noblesville in time to worship with Pastor Nicholas and Adriana Zarate at Gloria del Rey (King of Glory) Church. Nicholas and Adriana provide faithful leadership to this congregation and to the Spanish-language congregation that is part of United Wesleyan Church in Anderson. They have recently completed their ordination preparation journey with the DBMD and, pending DBA approval, are looking forward to being ordained in August.
Pastor Steve and Rosie Binns have also been hard at work updating Lone Oak Wesleyan Church in Anderson. I dropped in on them on Sunday afternoon to see the latest project that added a “Wow!” factor to their children’s space. Rosie’s artwork is designed to let children know that they are valued and that God has a wonderful plan for their lives.
Sunday evening, I met with Pastor Duane Summitt and the congregation at Fishersburg Wesleyan Church. Pastor Duane is another of our faithful bi-vocational pastors and Fishersburg is one of our smaller congregations. They have a committed core of mostly retired folks who are devoted to each other and trying hard to keep the church alive. I shared a devotional and we had a crucial conversation about the future of the church. They will be reflecting on the questions we discussed and considering next steps.
Last week’s schedule included drop-in visits and prayer with Pastor John Hannan (Union City CrossRoads) and Pastor Randy Yaryan (Winchester Wesleyan) on Monday. I met with our staff on Tuesday, dropped in on Rev. & Mrs. Richard Deisler in Fairmount, and spent time with Pastor Barry Taylor (Hartford City).
Wednesday, Dr. Wayne Schmidt and I connect for a district update and prayer. The DS cohort met by Zoom again over lunch that day. Wednesday evening, I met with Pastor Barry Taylor and the Hartford City Wesleyan Church LBA. Thursday was another good day in the field connecting with Pastor Andy Cole (Lapel Daybreak), Pastor Jeremy Armiger (Chesterfield Parkview), and Pastor Joe Jackson (Anderson United Wesleyan). Pastor Joe and his team have been busy relocating their offices and remodeling their entry way to provide expanded capacity for welcoming guests.
On Friday and Saturday, Sherry and I were excited to welcome all of our children home for a family “staycation.” We enjoyed bonfires, playing games, laughing a lot, and we may have eaten a bit more than we needed. Best of all, we experienced the joy of shared faith and meaningful conversations with these wonderful young adults that we are blessed to call our children.
We are delighted to extend congratulations to Pastor Ben and Kirsten Jones on the happy occasion of their wedding this past weekend in Ohio. Ben pastors our Beaver Creek Wesleyan Church, just outside of South Bend. Kirsten is a PK (preacher’s kid) and she’s looking forward to joining Ben as they serve this loving congregation.
Thank you to each one of our Crossroads District leaders who has engaged in prayerful conversations and peaceful demonstrations this past week. Christian leaders can both abhor police violence and support our first responders. Christian leaders can both engage in peaceful protests and decry the rioters destroying minority-owned businesses. Christian leaders can mourn the heart-breaking deaths of both George Floyd and David Dorn. What Christian leaders cannot do is remain silent.
“Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression…” Isaiah 1:17 (ESV)
Prayer requests this week include retired pastor Rev. Dr. Max Kingsolver (most recently at Mt. Hope Chapel) who is walking through cancer treatments. Pray for Pastor Brad LeRoy (McCordsville Harvest) as he works through a new health concern. We also want to be praying for Rev. Barry Taylor and the Hartford City Wesleyan Church. Pastor Taylor resigned over the weekend and is returning to West Virginia to resolve family concerns. Pray as the Hartford City LBA provides transitional leadership for this conference year.
REMINDER: All Crossroads District pastors are invited to join us this Tuesday evening, June 9 at 9 p.m., for our monthly ZOOM connection. We’ll share a couple of brief updates but the primary focus will be breaking out in small groups for connection and prayer. Pastors will have received a ZOOM link but you can reach out to Seth Bye in our office if you need assistance.
Pastors, if you’ve not yet completed the brief survey that Seth emailed to you last week, please do so ASAP and we’ll share those results in tomorrow evening’s meeting.
Thank you for all that you are doing to advance the cause of Christ in your community.
Your servant in Christ,
Crossroads District Superintendent
PS: Save the Date! Crossroads District Ordination will be August 15, 1 p.m., at Lakeview Wesleyan Church in Marion. All ordained ministers are expected to attend and will gather at 12:30 for our group picture with our ordinands. We are delighted that Dr. Wayne Schmidt, our General Superintendent will be joining us again this year. Thank you for making this a priority.
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