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July/August 2007

Cover Story

Benchmarks in the life of Bishop Lawson

7/8/2007
Born March 26, 1930, in Princeton, Ind. Married Martha Ellen Pegram of Princeton Degrees: University of Evansville, AB 1955 and Garrett Biblical Institute, BD 1959 Trainer in leadership development, and instructor at the University of Evansville, Certified trainer for Marriage Enrichment Member: Pi Gamma Mu Social Science Honorary Fraternity Pastoral ministry: Epworth, Wolcott, Carrollton, Tell... -- more --

Bishop Lawson remembered as a visionary leader

7/8/2007
By Daniel R. Gangler INDIANAPOLIS - More than 400 colleagues, family members and friends, gave a final farewell and hour of honor to Bishop David Jerald Lawson, whose life and legacy were celebrated in a memorial communion service June 11 at St. Luke's United Methodist Church in Indianapolis. Lawson, 77, died of cancer at his home in Franklin, Ind., on Thursday, May 31, 2007, following a lengthy illness. "We have been touched deeply and significantly by David Lawson. We have been... -- more --

What others said about Bishop Lawson

7/8/2007
"Bishop David Lawson was my 'consecration bishop.' He retired the year I was elected a bishop in 1996; he preached for that Consecration Service; and he was the retiring bishop assigned to lay hands upon me for consecration as a bishop. Since that time, David has been a colleague, friend, advisor and supporter. He once told me, 'I am one of your balcony people - encouraging you in your ministry as a bishop.' I have felt and experienced his support, especially since I returned to Indiana... -- more --

From the Bishop

Thanks for Imagining Indiana

7/8/2007
The Indiana annual conferences have spoken, and they have approved moving another step forward in the "Imagine Indiana" process by significant votes of approval - 78 percent in North and 67 percent in South. My only worry about the Imagine Indiana process this year was that one conference might vote "yes" and the other vote "no" or that the votes might be indecisive, something like a 51 percent approval. I am relieved by the positive votes, but before we start... -- more --

Welcome

Cutting old ties, giving life to new ties

7/8/2007
As we go to press, I am preparing to travel to Dallas to officiate at the wedding of my youngest son, James. He and his fiancée Laura Helmke planned to be married at Walnut Hill United Methodist Church on Saturday, July 7 making it one of those 070707 occasions. Since this is the first marriage of one of my three sons, the occasion also becomes a turning point of his mother's and my lives as we let go. Since the announcement of their engagement, my mind has been playing back a lifetime... -- more --

Indiana sinks deeper into gambling lobby's control

7/8/2007
By John Wolf While reviewing the 2007 Indiana Legislature's record on gambling, I recalled a remark by Sen. David Long, R-Fort Wayne, at the start of the session. He said, "Gambling in Indiana is out of control." Wrong, senator. "Gambling controls Indiana." This time, the gambling expansionists took no chances. Centaur Inc. spent $93,650 lobbying. Indiana Downs spent $42,115. The main issue was the expansion of horse-racing tracks at Anderson and Shelbyville into... -- more --

Problem gambling conference a success at Lawrenceburg

7/8/2007
As a cooperative project, Gambling Recovery Ministries (GRM) and Lawrenceburg, Ind. Community Mental Health Center, co-hosted May 16 the first-ever Problem Gambling Conference for southeastern Indiana at the Community Mental Health Center in Lawrenceburg. Attending were clergy and laity, who traveled from Jasper, Jeffersonville, Indianapolis, Shelbyville and Richmond. The Conference provided an outstanding opportunity to receive current and relevant information on problem gambling, treatment... -- more --

Indiana

'Evangelism' put up front in Board of Evangelism & Church Growth's name

7/8/2007
Paula Mayberry, chairperson of the South Indiana Conference Board of Evangelism and Church Growth said, (we need to) "Open our hearts and minds to let the wind blow through us. The wind of God's spirit - the Holy Spirit - is allowed to blow through us." Ken Grubb of Acton UMC said, "We should step it up a notch to see if we can do the best job possible with requests for church new start activities. We are moving from quarterly meetings to meet more often." Glenda Riggs of... -- more --

'Imagine Indiana' Song

7/8/2007
to the tune of "Imagine" by John Lennon By Alex Stone, Matthew Stultz, Scott Castle, John Mantle Imagine there’s one conference It isn’t hard to do No more need for division Time to try something new Imagine Indiana uniting for the Lord You may say I’m a dreamer But I’m not the only one I hope someday you’ll join us ... -- more --

Bikers find hospitality on journey to the St. Louis Arch

7/8/2007
By Lana and Glen Robyne WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Our Wesley Foundation group of 18 "Bikers for Jesus" said "yes" to a crazy, unique and life-changing trip from West Lafayette to St. Louis. Plans started when we received a call last fall from the Wesley Foundation at Arkansas State University. We were told by ASU Wesley about their cycling ministry called "Tour de Faith." The student leaders of each group were eager to meet, so they mutually decided to rendezvous... -- more --

Both conferences celebrate diakonia, Operation Classroom

7/8/2007
Celebrated the 30th anniversary of diakonia ministry and the 10th anniversary of permanent Order of Deacon. Prior to this time, the Order of Deacon was a probationary order to the Order of Elder. Celebrated the 20th anniversary of Operation Classroom, an outreach mission based in Indiana to care for secondary schools in Liberia and Sierra Leone. In 1992 OC was expanded to include Operation Doctor, which has included nutrition education, HIV/AIDS education programs,... -- more --

Both conferences honor retiring Bill Cross

7/8/2007
The presence of the Cokesbury Book Store at both Indiana annual conferences has been a mainstay for decades and so have the services of Cokesbury's Bill Cross. Both conferences honored retiring Cross upon his 35 years of service to the Indiana Area. Representing Cokesbury, Cross presented a check for the pastor's pensions to the Indiana North conference in the amount of $14,000. Cross said that the UM Publishing House gives more than $1 million a year to the United Methodist clergy pension... -- more --

Both conferences vote for uniting into one conference

7/8/2007
By Daniel R. Gangler Both Indiana United Methodist conferences have approved to begin plans to unite the two conferences into one. Meeting at Purdue University in West Lafayette, the North Indiana Conference cast ballots on June 1 that were sealed and counted June 8 along with the South Indiana Conference ballots that were cast June 8 at the Indiana University Auditorium in Bloomington. The North Indiana Conference votes totaled 663 for unity and 190 against - 78 percent approval. The South... -- more --

Brownsburg church receives Older Adult Ministries grant

7/8/2007
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Calvary United Methodist Church in Brownsburg, Ind. has received one of the 26 grants to fund a Seniors Day Out project in the amount of $1,250. The Committee on Older Adult Ministries at the United Methodist General Board of Discipleship selected 26 projects to fund with this year's round of grant funding. The grants are provided in partial fulfillment of the Comprehensive Plan for Older Adult Ministries approved by General Conference.... -- more --

Charter brings joy to Fort Wayne's Hispanic United Methodists

7/8/2007
By Allie Townsend FORT WAYNE, Ind. - When Sergio Reyes quit his full-time job to devote his time to Hispanic ministry in 2003, he had no idea that four years later, his vision would become a reality - a Hispanic church would be established in Fort Wayne. Fort Wayne welcomed the first Hispanic United Methodist Church in the state during a charter ceremony Sunday afternoon, May 27, Pentecost Sunday. Indiana is currently home to more than 1,200 United Methodist congregations. Sergio, and his... -- more --

Course of Study Graduates

7/8/2007
J. Bart Colwell Kevin M. Giggy Peggy Jo Haywood Mary Jane Modlin Kathy S. Rousch Dianne Wells ... -- more --

North Conference disaster response trailer now in Fort Wayne

7/8/2007
St. Joseph UMC in Fort Wayne is now home to the North Indiana Conference's disaster response trailer. The trailer, pictured here, holds all the supplies a disaster response team needs when responding to a weather-related disaster, as well as items needed to aid the victims, such as flood buckets with cleaning supplies, health kits for personal hygiene, water and meal rations. When the trailer is not out with a team responding to a disaster, it is available to visit United Methodist churches to... -- more --

North Indiana Conference takes action

7/8/2007
During its session, the North Indiana Conference adopted resolutions that: Asked congregations to pray for the people of Darfur and for Sudan's government to administer in just and fair ways; and asked the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits to divest targeted funds in Sudan. Increased the priority status of campus ministry in North Indiana. Lifted a sunset policy on agencies receiving funds from the conference that allows for a... -- more --

North Indiana elected delegates to General, Jurisdictional Conferences

7/8/2007
General Conference lay delegates are Kayc Mykranz of Logansport, Carolyn Johnson of West Lafayette, James Ottjes of Daleville, Paula Shrock of Greentown, Edwin Fenstermacher of Marion. Clergy delegates to General Conference are Frank Beard of Kokomo, Kimberly Reisman of Lafayette, Bryan Siefert of Culver, Cindy Reynolds of Warsaw, Michael Dominick of Kokomo. North Central Jurisdictional Conference lay delegates are Pat Weeks of Fishers, Charles Hefley of Kokomo, Ashley Loomis of Fort Wayne,... -- more --

North Indiana finance council says tithing model works

7/8/2007
Paul Arnold, chair of the North Indiana Conference Council on Finance and Administration, reported to the NIC session that the new tithing model is working. He said by mid-May, 269 churches were giving at 100 percent and above of their previous year's askings and that 360 churches were giving at 95 percent and above. On May 15, $2.4 million or 24 percent of the budget had been received, compared to last year when $2.2 million or 22 percent of the budget had been received. He also reported that... -- more --

North Indiana Outdoor Ministry Site Project shows progress, says Brindel

7/8/2007
WEST LAFAYETTE - The North Indiana Conference Outdoor Ministry Site Project continues to show progress towards a $16 million renovation of conference's four camp sites. Jean Brindel, chair of the Capital Campaign of the Outdoor Ministry Site Project, reported the goal of the campaign is to reach 15,000 children, youth and adults for Jesus Christ each year. The campaign, "Ten Thousand Blessings: building a new Epworth Forest to reach new generations for Christ," has a three-phase... -- more --

Simpson named director of Indy United Methodist Metro Ministries

7/8/2007
INDIANAPOLIS - Bishop Mike Coyner appointed the Rev. Dr. Douglas Simpson as the new Executive Director of the United Methodist Metro Ministries effective July 1. Coyner also announced that the Rev. Dr. Gwendolyn C. Roberts, former director of Metro Ministries, has become the Metro Ministries Director for the West Ohio Conference effective July 1. Simpson previously served as senior pastor of the Fairview United Methodist Church in Bloomington, an appointment he held since 2000. In Indiana, he... -- more --

South Indiana Conference adopts resolutions on Darfur, AIDS

7/8/2007
The South Indiana Conference adopted resolutions that: Asked congregations to pray for the people of Darfur and for Sudan's government to administer in just and fair ways; and asked the General Board of Pension and Health Benefits to divest targeted funds in Sudan; Asked congregations to support the Global AIDS Fund and give at least $2 per member and to distribute 25 percent of those gifts to HIV/AIDS work in Indiana. Created a conference-wide... -- more --

South Indiana Conference Awards

7/8/2007
Laity Manuscript Award was won by Sue Forry of the Zionsville UMC. She delivered her message "One in the Ministry" saying the church needs to learn how to look for God in a culture that is not searching for God. Scouting. The Bishop's Award of Excellence went to Boy Scout Troup 119 and Scoutmaster Lloyd DeWar of Ellettsville First UMC in the Bloomington District. Outstanding Small Membership Church Award. Glenda Riggs announced that 19 churches were nominated. New Salem UMC in... -- more --

South Indiana Conference Director Robert Sharp retires after 41 years

7/8/2007
By Matthew Oates When the final amen was shouted at this year's South Indiana Annual Conference, it marked an end of an era in the life of Robert and Cynthia Sharp. Robert will retire July 1, most recently from his appointment as Conference Council on Ministries director. He takes pride in being the youngest ordained deacon in the Mississippi Conference at age 21 in 1963. But after 47 years of ministry, he's ready to take a full year off and see what forms of ministry he'll do... -- more --

South Indiana Conference sets 2008 expense budget at $9.2 million for mission, ministry

2/12/2009
Lloyd Tucker, chairperson of the South Indiana Conference Commission on Finance and Administration, reported that the commission added a last-minute prayer ministry team program request of $500 under CCOM budget. This will not increase the budget, since internal adjustments were made to compensate for the money. Conference approved an expense budget of $9,289,330 a 0.48 percent increase above the 2007 budget of $9,244,735. A 4 percent raise in District Superintendent Salaries was challenged.... -- more --

South Indiana delegates elected to General, Jurisdictional Conferences

7/8/2007
General Conference lay delegates are Ike Williams of Indianapolis, Patricia Miller of Indianapolis, Rita Gaither-Gant of Indianapolis, Vickie Newkirk of New Palestine, John Lawson of Westchester, Ohio, David Crane of Newburgh. Clergy delegates to General Conference are Ann Glass of Plainfield, Greg McGarvey of Carmel, David Peñalva of Indianapolis, Darren Cushman Wood of Speedway and James Bushfield of Columbus and Beth Ann Cook of Evansville. North Central Jurisdictional Conference lay... -- more --

What's in the Bishop's bundle of books?

7/8/2007
During each of the two Indiana annual conferences sessions, Bishop Mike Coyner asked the clergy of the Indiana Area to read and discuss these five books during the next conference year: The Gospel According to Starbucks: Living with a Grande Passion by Leonard Sweet, The Book of Hard Choices: How to Make the Right Decisions at Work and Keep Your Self-Respect by James A. Autry and Peter Roy, Provocative Grace: The Challenge in Jesus' Words by Robert... -- more --

Viewpoints

Are you willing to give benefit of the doubt?

7/8/2007
By Robert Miller The benefit of the doubt - are you willing to give it to other persons? Your answer will tell you a great deal about your faith in human nature. The public mood today is rather hostile toward human failure. We're becoming more and more impatient with people who don't measure up to expected behavior. We are becoming more unwilling to give others the benefit of the doubt. When we stop giving others the benefit of the doubt, we are saying in principle that we believe they are... -- more --

Bishop asks us to join call to action

7/8/2007
Bishop Mike Coyner told members of both annual conferences that something new is going on in our denomination. He introduced four calls to action. Live the UM way. Live the Wesley model of discipleship with a reemphasis upon the General Rules of the church - Do no harm; do all the good you can; and stay in love with God through the ordinances of the church. Starting new churches. The goal is 650 new churches from 2009 through 2012, with an annual goal from then on... -- more --

Steps of faith

7/8/2007
By Todd Outcalt Most pastors can attest that people in their congregations don't like change. This is evidenced every Sunday morning, as we witness the majority of people sitting in the same chair or pew location week after week. Most of us could take attendance with just a cursory glance from the pulpit - and I often know which families are absent in a given week by simply looking at the vacant slots in the sanctuary. Some years ago, I remember asking members of a congregation to move to a... -- more --

Who needs diversity training?

7/8/2007
By Sharon A. White In the TV spots we see about The United Methodist Church, we hear a voice say "Open hearts, Open minds, Open doors. The people of The United Methodist Church." How "open" are we? In The South Indiana Conference, we have commissions, committees and boards that address people with disabilities, church and society, ethnic local church concerns, Hispanic ministries, HIV/AIDS, children's homes, Native Americans, racial healing, religion and race, the status... -- more --

Chronicles

Deaths

7/8/2007
ANNE CLARK, wife of the Rev. Arthur Summers Clark (retired - NIC), died May 8, 2007. Survivors include husband, Arthur Summers Clark; four children, Hazel Clark, Jim Clark, Louis Clark and Marcia Franc; sister to Minnie Lee Jones (widow of the late Rev. Gerald H. Jones), 505 Roxbury Ct., Fort Wayne, IN 46807-3116. Condolences can be sent to the Rev. Arthur Summers Clark, 3161 Moller Rd., Indianapolis, IN 46224-2101. Memorials may be given to Jaiama Secondary School of Operation Classroom, P.O.... -- more --

Indiana Area leads jurisdiction in 2006 VIM service

7/8/2007
With all 12 conferences of the United Methodist North Central Jurisdiction reporting their 2006 Volunteer in Mission activities, Indiana conferences led the other ten conferences by a long shot. In dollars contributed, the South Indiana Conference contributed more than $1.4 million and the North Indiana Conference contributed more than $800,000 or 30 percent of the jurisdiction's total VIM contributions. When it came to the value of work completed converted to dollars, the South Indiana... -- more --

Muncie, Rushville Districts on mission trip to Sierra Leone

7/8/2007
As Together goes to press, an Operation Classroom work team from the Muncie and Rushville Districts is currently at Baoma Secondary School in Sierra Leone until July 7. This is the school that both districts have been supporting. The United Methodist supported schools in Sierra Leone are in need of so many things - paper, books, pencils, pens, chalk, desks, benches, qualified teachers, housing for teachers, and the list goes on. Likewise, there is a very long list of students and their... -- more --

Pastoral Appointments

7/8/2007
Bishop Michael J. Coyner has announced the following changes within the Indiana Area. All dates effective 2007 unless otherwise noted. These appointments are based on Cabinet reports received by Indiana Area Communication during the months of May and June 2007. North Indiana Conference Alexander, Jerrold from Anderson Colonial, Marion to Anderson Colonial/New Beginnings, Marion, 6/16 Alexander, Will J. from no appointment to Blaine Center, New Mt. Pleasant,... -- more --

Why hide God's Word in your heart, when you can cram it in!?

7/8/2007
With a total of six Quiz-Ins, 27 quizzers, 31 quizzes and a potential of at least 100 points per quiz, Lydia Einselen from McGrawsville UMC knows how to "cram" God's Word! Lydia ended the year of Kokomo District Bible Quizzing with 3,090 points and an average of 99.7 points per quiz! Her rewards were numerous as well, winning five team trophies, six Top-Three Quizzers medals and at the final quiz-in on Saturday, June 2, she received the Number One Top Ten Quizzer trophy and... -- more --

Zionsville youth participate in World Vision famine

7/8/2007
ZIONSVILLE, Ind. - More than 50 youth and five adult leaders of Zionsville UMC participated in World Vision's 30 Hour Famine April 28-29 to raise money and awareness to the plight of world hunger. More than 29,000 children die each day from hunger and hunger related diseases. Participants willingly gave up food for 30 hours so that someone else could live. They recruited friends, family, teachers, neighbors and teammates to sponsor them for the famine. Through the generous support of our... -- more --