Sunday morning, January 29, I was blessed to worship at Connecting Point Church in Frankfort. Pastor Alan Downing leads this team in ministering in the historic First Wesleyan Church building just north of the campus of what was then the Frankfort Pilgrim College. Rev. Downing has served the church since 2014 and he’s another of our faithful bi-vocational pastors. The church has a unique and growing ministry to families of children with special needs. After the worship service, I met briefly with the local board and then joined Pastor Alan and Teri Downing for lunch. Pray for their continued outreach.
I drove on from Frankfort to Noblesville to worship with Revs. Nicolas and Adriana Zarate at Rey de Gloria Iglesia Wesleyana. Rey de Gloria is part of the network of congregations known as Circle of Hope led by Dr. Rich and Rev. Carol Schenck. Rey de Gloria is growing again after overcoming a series of setbacks including health challenges in the Zarate family. Please keep them in your prayers.
Sunday was also a special day at Chapel Pike Wesleyan Church in Marion. Pastor Josh Bowlin and Assistant Pastor Andrew Kinney had the joy of baptizing six teenagers and affirming the infant baptism of a seventh. Praise the Lord for lives being #MadeNew!
Last Monday, I met with our district staff and then joined a Zoom call led by DS Jerry Lumston with the study committee tasked by General Conference with further consideration of Memorial 857. This group is making progress in developing recommendations that will be presented to the General Board in May.
Monday evening, I had the joy of connecting with Dr. Steve DeNeff and the LBA (local board of administration) at College Wesleyan Church to review the extended pastoral call. Pastor DeNeff had the board break out into future-focused discussion groups to wrestle with some of the exciting challenges ahead for their church. Dr. DeNeff began pastoring College Wesleyan back in 2001 and continues to lead this ministry with excellence in his 22nd year.
On Tuesday morning, I met with the district budget team in preparation for our upcoming DBA meeting and then met with Pastor Rob Tippey at Wabash New Journey Church for our annual coaching conversation. Tuesday evening, I met with Pastor Rich VanVuren and the LBA at Plymouth Shiloh Wesleyan Church for their pastoral review.
Wednesday morning, our district team hosted a Zoom call for local church leaders who were interested in learning more Discipline changes from General Conference 2022. We offered this webinar on Wednesday morning and again on Saturday morning. The Wednesday call was recorded and you can access the video at this link:
Wednesday afternoon, the snow was continuing to fall so Dr. Rich and Rev. Carol Schenck joined me via ZOOM for our annual coaching conversation.
The roads were still unpredictable on Thursday morning so I worked from my home office again. The day included a call from one staff pastor considering the possibility of transitioning to a lead pastor role, another call with a lead pastor considering the possibility of trans-local ministry, and I was also able to join the webinar that Wesley Seminary hosted featuring Dr. Chris Williams on “Self-Leadership.” Chris always delivers great content so if you weren’t able to catch that webinar, here’s the link:
I met with an IWU graduating ministerial student on Friday afternoon. If your church has job openings, please share those opportunities via our free denominational website:
For the past 3 weeks, many of us have been participating in the 21 Days of Prayer initiative led by Pastor Chris Hodges and the Church of the Highlands. I joined their online prayer meetings (6 am CST) through the week and enjoyed the closing prayer rally that they hosted on Saturday morning. If you’ve not yet discovered their prayer ministry resources, I encourage you to visit their website:
Saturday evening, I was able to join with Rev. Zachary and Rev. Carla Working in Huntington as they led Hope Rising Church in the final gathering of their 21 Days of Prayer. Thank you to the Working's and every Crossroads District pastor who is making prayer a priority in 2023!
Pastors, we have two slots available for local church leaders who are ready to take the next step in ministry effectiveness. Call today to register your team for the Next Level Church Experience led by Dr. Christopher Williams. This experience includes the opportunity for your team to develop an updated action plan and receive a $1000 matching grant for your next outreach initiative. Check out the link below for more information:
We’re counting down with just two more weeks until the 2023 Crossroads District Youth All-Nighter in Fort Wayne on Friday, February 17. Click the image below for more information or to register your youth group. Rev. Jessica Folz, our District Youth President, along with Rev. Lane Sander are a great team, always providing an incredible experience for our youth groups. I hope to see you there!
Thank you for making a difference in the cause that counts for eternity!
Your servant in Christ,
Crossroads District Superintendent
P.S.: Main session and seminar recordings from The Gathering are now available! Click here to access those resources: https://resources.wesleyan.org/g23resources