Sherry and I had the privilege of worshiping with Rev. Rick Fletcher and the congregation at Lifeway Wesleyan Church in Fort Wayne on Sunday, November 5. Rick and I were first introduced when my father was pastoring what was then the Moeller Road Wesleyan Church. Rev. Fletcher became senior pastor after Dad retired in 1998 and is doing a great job leading the church forward.
Pastor Fletcher and Assistant Pastor Andy Jellison lead a committed team of volunteers who minister to as many people through the week (more than 200 in youth, children and Bible studies) as they do on Sunday. After yesterday’s service, I met with the LBA briefly before Sherry and I hosted Rick and Deb for lunch.
Dr. JoAnne Lyon represented The Wesleyan Church at the 500th Anniversary of the Protestant Reformation in Wittenberg, Germany last week. Closer to home, I was able to enjoy an appearance by Martin Luther (as portrayed by Dr. Bud Bence) at the IWU chapel service on Monday. Dr. Bud Bence was pictured and quoted in an article on Luther in the USAToday: Dr. Bud Bence in USAToday
Monday afternoon, I met with Rev. David Hines and Pastor Steve Mathews, our District Global Partners co-directors, in Muncie for an update on their strategic plan to engage deeper and broader support for our district partnerships in Bangladesh and Mozambique. We are committed to the priority of Global Partners as the home team that deserves our first and best support!
Monday evening, Sherry and I attended a vision chat at our home church, Waterline Church in Noblesville. Pastor John and Danielle Freed did a great job of reminding our team why we do what we do to make disciples.
I had meetings in Gas City and Pendleton on Tuesday before heading to Fountain City for Rev. Bob Anderson’s funeral service. The service was a celebration of a life well-lived for God. Rev. Anderson (or Father Bob as he was affectionately called) left a lasting spiritual impact on the congregations he pastored (including Gas City Eastview and Indianapolis Eastlawn) and the family that carry on his legacy of ministry. Please remember Rev. Ruth Anderson and the family in your prayers.
Wednesday morning, I was back at IWU for the special chapel that featured a conversation between Catholics and Protestants in light of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. While we have meaningful differences, we have so much more in common. Wednesday lunch was a delight as I connected with Jordan Delks, Development Director for Wesley Seminary. Wednesday afternoon, I met with Dr. David Smith, our DBMD chair, with special attention given to developing workshops for local congregations to go deeper in the Word. I’m grateful for the investment Dr. Smith makes in developing the next generation of leaders for The Wesleyan Church.
Thursday morning, I had the unique opportunity to join with Dr. Wayne Schmidt and his team in welcoming a delegation from the Korea Evangelical Holiness Church. Four years ago, I had the honor of meeting their leadership team in Seoul, Korea while developing articulation agreements for Kingswood University.
It was encouraging to see how this relationship continues to grow with Dr. David Drury recently visiting and Dr. Schmidt being invited to address their General Conference in 2018.
Thursday afternoon, I met with Dr. Joe Harmon, our new pastor at Lapel Daybreak and then connected with Pastor Jerry Alexander in Anderson. Friday morning, I met with a ministerial student for coffee and then connected with a church planting prospect over lunch before meeting with Dave Tippey in the afternoon. Saturday morning, I accepted an invitation from Pastor Ben Parker to join their men’s breakfast to hear Dr. Joe Harmon’s challenge. I’m looking forward to speaking to this men’s group in January.
The other big event this past week was Breakaway 2017. Special thanks to Marietta Williams (Chris Williams’ spouse) and her team that hosted more than 80 spouses from across several states. Danielle Freed was the host and Sherry (my better half) was one of the guest speakers. Congratulations to Marietta for her appointment as Promotion Director for the Gathering 2019.
Pray for our team of 40+ leaders who will be attending the Exponential MidWest Regional Conference in Chicago this week. Pray specifically that we will be challenged and equipped to more effectively make disciples and multiply congregations in our mission field.
Please remember these Crossroads District pastors who are recovering from their recent surgeries: Rev. Joe Allen (Albion), Rev. Brad LeRoy (McCordsville Harvest), and Rev. Lloyd Moore (Cicero, retired).
It’s not too late to register for the Truth at Work Conference simulcast that will be hosted this Friday, November 10, at College Wesleyan Church in Marion. Here’s a link for more details: https://www.facebook.com/events/1922743097988303/
Sherry and I are looking forward to hosting our senior pastors and their spouses from the Warsaw Zone Fellowship (Rev. Jarod Osbourne, Zone Leader) this Friday evening, November 10, from 6:30 to 9.
And, don’t forget Veterans Day on Saturday, November 11. Freedom isn’t free.
Your servant in Christ,