Sunday, May 26, I had the privilege of worshiping with Rev. Alan Downing and the team at Connecting Point Church in Frankfort during their morning service. Pastor Downing preached on the Armor of God from Ephesians 6 and shared illustrations from his military service. In addition to their recent name change and updating the auditorium, the church is making strides in serving their community. I also appreciate the way they have opened their doors to embrace Pastor Calimario Rodriguez and the congregation of Templo de Poder.
Sunday afternoon, Rev. Barry Dixon (member of our DBA) and I worshiped with the wonderful congregation of Shalom Church on the southside of Indianapolis. We were there to officially welcome the new members and install the leaders of this Wesleyan congregation comprised of immigrants from Myanmar (Burma). Rev. Dixon and I also had the privilege of administering the Lord’s Supper. After the service, we had a meeting with the leadership team as they move into full fellowship with The Wesleyan Church.
Pastor Rick Matthews and the Southview Wesleyan Church have been wonderful hosts and partners to this growing congregation. Shalom Church has their first student headed to Indiana Wesleyan University and they are making plans to bring their youth group to Follow 2019 in Cincinnati. Special thanks also to Lay Supply Pastor Benjamin Tuimuk who serves the congregation so well. Worship attendance at Shalom averages 80 with nearly 30 children and teens.
Chris Williams and I had the opportunity to serve Rev. Mike Hilson and the leadership team at New Life Network in LaPlata, MD, on Monday and Tuesday last week. Mike and Tina Hilson graciously served our district team for ReEquip last month and we were glad to be able to reciprocate. Wednesday was a prep day for the DBA meeting and I also participated in the monthly ZOOM call that Dr. Wayne Schmidt, our General Superintendent, hosts for district superintendents.
Wednesday evening, I was able to attend the closing service of the revival at Lancaster Wesleyan Church with Rev. Gary Bingham serving as evangelist. He shared a compelling dramatic presentation as a Roman centurion who was present at the crucifixion and became convinced that Jesus was the Messiah. Rev. Doug Sharrard is the pastor at Lancaster Wesleyan and Rev. Duane Cragen assists with community outreach.
Thursday afternoon, our Crossroads District Board of Administration gathered at Trinity Wesleyan Church in Indianapolis for our fourth quarterly meeting. It was encouraging to hear more reports of life change and community impact. I am also grateful to report that our churches participated at a high level in our United Stewardship Fund commitment with 96.6% participation. Thank you for investing in our shared ministry with our denominational initiatives and educational institutions. Together, we are stronger.
Our Crossroads District retired pastors and spouses gathered for their spring fellowship at College Wesleyan Church. Dr. Bud Bence talked about the ways that God communicates His lessons in our life. Velvet Haisley and “The Branch” catered a delicious meal for the 60+ guests who joined us. We enjoyed wonderful fellowship and prayer together. Thank you to Chip Bos and College Wesleyan Church for their hospitality.
Friday evening, Sherry and I had the privilege of hosting pastors and spouses from the north Indy zone at Thornapple. Some of the couples were joining us for the first time. I always enjoy seeing the connections that are made in these evenings together as team members share stories of their families and journey in ministry.
Saturday, we had the joy of welcoming 18 of our Crossroads District Hispanic pastors and spouses for our annual fellowship. Dr. Norman and Kim Wilson do a wonderful job of encouraging this growing network of leaders. This was the first time for some of them to meet Rev. Eliorgy Guerrero and Rev. Franz Gonzales, our newest pastors from Venezuela, who lead Spanish-language congregations in Elkhart and Goshen. I am encouraged by the commitment of these leaders to multiplying new Kingdom communities. All of these pastors serve bi-vocationally and with great commitment.
This was a significant weekend of outreach for The Bridge Urban Church in South Bend as they partnered with Pastor Troy Evans and his team from the Edge Church in Grand Rapids. The theme was “Love Our City” and included prayer walks, servant evangelism, and concluded on Saturday evening with a Christian rap concert. Sunday’s worship service had 60 adults and 15 children. They’re praising the Lord for 7 decisions for Christ over the weekend. Continue to pray for Pastor Terry and Lennaire as they lead this wonderful team in reaching into the urban center of South Bend.
This week, I’ll be on the road for coaching conversations and also taking part in the Wesleyan Doctrinal Symposium on Wednesday and Thursday at Wesley Seminary. Make plans to join us next Tuesday, June 4, 7:00 pm, at Wesley Seminary as they welcome Rev. Dan LeRoy for an important conversation on “Rediscovering Our Holiness Heritage.”
Thank you for all you do to advance the Kingdom!
Your servant in Christ,
Crossroads District Superintendent