More than 150 Crossroads District team members (pastors and their spouses) joined with another 1800 Wesleyan leaders who came from across the USA, Canada and even New Zealand for The Gathering. First established in 2007, this marked the fourth time that Wesleyan leaders have convened like this for worship, training and renewal.
Rev. Carol Schenck, Noblesville campus pastor for Circle of Hope and our District Secretary, posted this on her Facebook page:
“Preparing to head back home after an amazing Pastors’ Conference. We thank our home district, Crossroads, for their assistance in helping provide many of us as district pastors funding to attend. This conference was life-changing in so many ways for many of us. On behalf of all of us from Circle of Hope campuses, we say thank you for the care you give to us as district pastors. We are the blessed ones!”
Congratulations to Executive Director Becci Wood and her team who organized The Gathering, a ministry of the HQ Department of Education and Clergy Development. The generosity of the Wesleyan Investment Foundation as the lead sponsor was a special blessing to this event.
The music team led us in Spirit-filled worship. The speakers were real and relevant. And the fellowship was sweet as new friendships were formed and long-time ministry colleagues reunited. Special appreciation goes to our District Board of Administration who committed resources from our Thrive Fund to match the contributions of local churches and make it possible for so many of our pastors and their spouses to attend.
Sherry and I left on Sunday afternoon and drove to the event with 8 large boxes of T-shirts to be distributed as the Heartland Region launched its new website:
My first appointment was with the members of the Boards of Trustees from all five our Wesleyan higher education institutions. Our sessions began with lunch on Tuesday and concluded on Wednesday afternoon. We covered a variety of helpful topics for the challenging times that face our colleges.
My schedule changed when we received word that Assistant DS Chris Williams’ mother, Mrs. Joyce Williams, had unexpectedly passed away on Tuesday. We were already scheduled to host our Crossroads District team for a luncheon on Thursday so Sherry, Seth and I handled that and then I had a planning meeting with the Heartland Region DS team late Thursday afternoon. As soon as that meeting was over, I left for Maryland and arrived in Salisbury, MD on Friday evening to represent our team at the visitation time. The funeral was held at Emmanuel Wesleyan Church on Saturday morning.
Rev. Chris Williams and Sean, his son and Joyce’s oldest grandchild, both did a great job sharing memories and paying tribute to Mrs. Williams as a loving mother and grandmother. Rev. Mark Bunting and Rev. Tom Bunting conducted the funeral and they both affirmed the wonderful legacy of faith that Joyce left for her family and friends.
From Maryland, I was heading west into the oncoming snowstorm so Rev. Damian and Anne Williams graciously hosted me in the Pittsburgh suburbs. The Williams generously funded several of our first Maximizing Impact weekends here in Indiana and it was good to reconnect with them. I worshiped with them at Allison Park Church, their home church, on Sunday morning,
This wonderful ministry, led by Pastor Jeff Leake, has launched more than 100 church plants across the northeastern states in the past 10 years. After a brief lunch with the Williams, I hit the road and made it safely back to Indiana before sunset. No matter how far you roam, there’s no place like home!
This week we’re praying for Pastor Joe & Dawn Deckard who are hosting their first preview service in Pendleton this coming Sunday, 10:30 a.m., for a new church plant as part of the Waterline Church network. If you have unsaved, unchurched friends or relatives in the Pendleton area, let them know about this new campus of Waterline Church:
There is still time to register for the Crossroads District’s Youth Ministry All-Nighter. This year’s event is scheduled for Fri-Sat, Feb. 22-23, in Fort Wayne. All the youth leaders who are on file with our district office have received detailed information from DYP Lane Sander. If you haven’t received the information, please add you name to the list at our office and make sure your teenagers don’t miss this powerful event! Click here for more information!
Mark your calendar for ReEquip 2019, on April 6, in Marion. Our guest speakers will be Pastor Mike & Tina Hilson, (New Life Network in LaPlata, MD) who are setting the pace for church multiplication, and Dr. David Smith, TrueNorth Ministry, who is helping churches deepen the level of Bible engagement among their members. There will also be specialized breakouts for children and youth leaders. Click here to visit the ReEquip website!
We’re praising the Lord with Pastor Tony Bye and the Brookhaven Wesleyan Church who are off to a great start in 2019 baptizing 7 new believers yesterday morning. Praise the Lord for each one who publicly professed their faith in Christ!
I’m believing with you for a great year of Kingdom advance in 2019!
Your servant in Christ,