Sunday, March 11, I had the privilege of worshiping at Harvest Church in McCordsville. Pastor Brad and Heidi LeRoy have done an amazing work in planting and establishing this life-giving church on the east side of Indianapolis. Last year they averaged 292 in worship with 36 professions of faith and 22 baptisms. Many of you will know that Pastor Brad has persevered through significant health struggles. Continue to pray for strength and a full recovery as Harvest Church advances the Kingdom!
It was also fun to catch up with Rev. Wayne Richards (Habitat for Missions) and then with Rev. Gwen Jackson, author of Unforced Rhythms, who had just returned from Bangladesh and the ordination of Rev. Joshe Bose, the leader of that church planting movement. Gwen and Dr. Dennis Jackson attend Harvest when they’re not traveling on behalf of Global Partners.
I know the Jackson’s appreciate the church for many reasons but at least one of those reasons is that Harvest is the home church for their grandchildren because Mike Morgan, their son-in-law, does a great job leading the church’s worship ministry. If you haven’t ordered it yet, check out Gwen’s book at http://www.unforcedrhythmsbook.com
On the way to Harvest, I stopped by The First Wesleyan Church building in Knightstown. The congregation has dwindled down to a handful of wonderful people who love the Lord and love each other. They anticipate concluding the ministry at the end of this conference year. Knightstown is not a large community but there are still 5,000 people in the zip code. Please join me in prayer for what God has in store for Knightstown.
Rev. John and Danielle Freed, pastors at Waterline Church, hosted the Crossroads District Church Planter Training Center (or Boot Camp, as it’s affectionally called) at HQ on Friday and Saturday for 18 leaders who are actively considering launching a new Kingdom community. John and Danielle do a great job serving our team by leading this training event and coaching planters. This opportunity is offered at least twice each year and you don’t have to be an ordained minister to learn more about church planting. A great first step in exploring church planting is the free pre-assessment that we offer on our district website: Crossroads District Church Planter Pre-Assessment
Last Monday, I was in Anderson to connect with Rev. Bill Thompson, then on to Elwood to meet with Rev. Doug Slack before heading over to Colfax Wesleyan to meet with their LBA and begin the pastoral search process.
Tuesday morning, I hit the road for coaching conversations with Pastor David Cox (Laketon Wesleyan), Pastor Jarod Osborne (Warsaw Wesleyan) and then with Pastor Rick Fletcher (Lifeway Wesleyan) in Fort Wayne. My last meeting on Tuesday was with Pastor Tom Bradley and the leadership team at Huntington Etna Avenue. We were able to interview a prospective candidate who meets with the entire congregation on March 18.
Wednesday, I was in Indianapolis for a meeting with Assistant DS Mike Colaw in preparation for the DBA meeting and then on to Albion Wesleyan Church for prayer meeting and to connect with their LBA team in beginning the pastoral search process. Pastor Joe Allen resigned and continues to need our prayers for ongoing health concerns including a surgery last Friday and follow-up surgery scheduled for April.
Your Crossroads District Board of Administration met in Marion at the River Church on Thursday. We were missing a couple of our members, including Coach Jeff Clark who was unable to be present due to IWU Men’s Basketball advancing in the playoffs. Dr. Norman Wilson set a new record by joining us via technology from Costa Rica.
Among the highlights of our meeting were interviewing prospective church planters for Speedway and for Pendleton. Both projects came recommended from their respective zones (Indy and Madison County) so it was a joy for the DBA to approve and affirm these leaders to launch 2 new Kingdom communities. It was also encouraging to see the high level of participation in USF, pulling ahead of last year to date. Thank you to each of you as leaders who are making this team contribution a priority.
Friday morning, I was in Fishers to meet with a prospective church planter referred to me by Dr. Lenny Luchetti from the doctoral program at Wesley Seminary. Continue to pray that God will send out workers into His harvest field! (Matthew 9:37-38)
Friday evening, Sherry and I had the privilege of welcoming lead pastors and spouses from the North Zone of Region 3, led by Rev. Don Bayne (New Carlisle). The group was a little smaller than usual with others having calendar challenges but it’s always an honor to spend an evening in fellowship and prayer with these soldiers of the Cross!
Special prayer requests this week for two of our pastoral families. Rev. Steve DeNeff’s mother passed away on Saturday and Rev. Johnnie Blair’s father passed away on Sunday afternoon. Both of these saints were faithful servants of Christ and the Church. Funeral arrangements have not been announced at the time of this post but will be forwarded to our district team as soon as possible.
April 21 is just over 4 weeks away and I can’t wait to see you and your leadership team at ReEquip 2018! Yes, the location is convenient, the price is affordable and the training is invaluable. Don’t miss Professor Mark Wilson (http://markowilson.com/), Pastor Ron Wickard, and Fuller Youth Institute’s Matthew DePrez all live and in person for this one-day event. Here’s the link to register your team today: http://www.reequipconference.org/
Save the dates:
April 9-11 – Crossroads District Regional Meetings
May 14-15 – Festival on Discipleship at College Wesleyan
June 22 – Ordination (all credential ministers are expected)
June 23 – Crossroads District Conference
August 9-10 – Global Leadership Summit
October 1-2 – Crossroads District Disciple-Making Workshop
November 6-7 – Exponential Regional Conference in Chicago
January 9-11 – THE GATHERING (Orlando)
Keep on pressing on!
Your servant in Christ,
Crossroads District Superintendent