Sunday, October 15, Sherry and I were blessed to worship with Rev. Kory and Becky Christensen at New Haven Impact Church. Impact Church is the most recent church plant in our Fort Wayne Zone and it’s encouraging to see the many ways this young congregation is partnering to impact their community. After a brief standup meeting with the LBA, Becky and Kory joined us for lunch. Becky plays a key role in the community through her leadership as assistant principal at the high school. Please keep this young church in your prayers!
Last Monday, I met with Rev. Les Crossfield (Greater Ohio District Superintendent) for lunch in Richmond. It’s been a joy getting to know Les better and I appreciate his passion to see every church on mission. I’d also like to take a few lessons from this scratch golfer!
I met with Pastor Barry & Joyce Dixon in Indianapolis to learn more about their dreams and the challenges in leading in the urban context. They have a great heart for God and a deep love for people that motivates their ministry at Calvary Family Church.
Dr. Bob Whitesel graciously invited me to be a guest lecturer in his seminary class held at IWU’s Keystone Campus on the north side of Indianapolis on Monday evening. It was a privilege to share with this diverse group of students that included some of our own district pastors.
Tuesday morning, I hit the road for South Bend for my first coaching conversation of the day with Pastor Steve Runyon (Beaver Creek Wesleyan). My next stop was with Pastor Bill Dixon at Davis Chapel and then on to Marion to meet with Pastor Gary Bingham at Hillside Wesleyan. I value these opportunities to learn how our district can better partner with our pastors and churches as they seek to win their communities for Christ.
Tuesday evening, I dropped in at IWU where Pastor Marc Ulrich’s team from ReThink Church were hosting a pizza party and information session for students who were interested in learning more about church planting. Special thanks goes to Rev. Rick Carder for his thoughtful hospitality to our alumni and pastors when they visit campus.
Wednesday began with a DBMD meeting at College Wesleyan Church led by Dr. David Smith. It was a special delight to be there for Rev. Terry Vaughn’s interview as an ordained minister in process of transfer. Terry and Lennaire are stepping up to launch The Bridge Urban Church in South Bend.
I joined Scott Rhyno, Chief Generosity Officer for The Wesleyan Church, for lunch in Fishers as we look at hosting a fundraising golf tournament here in the Crossroads District next year as part of the THRIVE initiative.
Jon Wiest met in the afternoon regarding a disciple-making conference in partnership with Trinity Wesleyan Church to be held next fall. Mark your calendars for October 1-2 and plan to join us. Then, Rev. Ervin Webster (IWU alumnus) and I met regarding next steps toward organizing and welcoming St. Stephen’s Church as a new Wesleyan congregation.
I was invited to pray and share the evening meal at New Pastors’ Orientation where 4 of our most recently appointed pastors from the Crossroads District enjoyed two days interacting with Dr. Wayne Schmidt and his team at headquarters along with new pastors from several other districts.
Thursday was our fall meeting of the District Board of Administration. We have representatives from historic churches and new congregations, some with attendance of more than 1,000 and others with attendance of less than 100. There was robust discussion about the best ways to accomplish our mission of making disciples and multiplying congregations here in Indiana. It really is a delight to serve with these team members!
I had the unique privilege of being interviewed by Dr. Aaron Perry at Wesley Seminary on Friday afternoon for the new podcast they’re producing. If you’ve not yet met Dr. Perry, you’ll enjoy getting to know him and he’s always willing to bring seminars or offer pulpit supply to our churches.
Saturday morning, I joined with Rev. Paul James, Chris Williams and Seth Bye at the Maximizing Impact consultation at Elwood Central Wesleyan Church. Pastor Ben and Amanda Capshaw are doing a great job leading this turnaround congregation. It was exciting to see their team dreaming of new ways to increase their effectiveness in making disciples.
Calling all Retired Pastors and Spouses! “Cupcakes and Coffee Fellowship” will be held on Friday, October 27. These are not required but are informal opportunities to connect and catch up on life around the Crossroads District. For your convenience, we are offering two opportunities to connect:
10 am at Noblesville Lakeview Wesleyan (396 Park Street, Noblesville, IN 46060)
2 pm at Eastview Wesleyan Church (414 North 10th Street, Gas City, IN 46933)
Our condolences and prayers go out to Rev. Dr. Rich Schenck and the other family members who are grieving the loss of Rev. T. Eugene Schenck, Rich’s father and a beloved pastor who served in The Wesleyan Church for several decades. There will be memorial services in North Carolina today (Monday) and back in Indiana at the former Eastlawn Wesleyan Church facility (3400 N Post Road) on Thursday, 11 a.m. with calling hours from 9:30 a.m. until the time of service.
Just a reminder that October is designated in The Wesleyan Church as Pastor Appreciation Month. If your church has not already done so, there’s still time to take this opportunity to let your pastor and spouse know how much you appreciate their investment in your congregation and your own life. For creative ideas, check out this list:
Exponential Midwest Regional Conference, November 7-8
Breakaway Conference for Ministry Spouses
Keep on making a difference in the cause that counts for eternity!
Your servant in Christ,