Recent News

Xenos Offering New Meetings for Older Adults

Next week will mark the first of a new series of one-hour programs called Pace-Setters. The series will cover topics relevant to empty-nesters and other older adults, appropriate for both Xenos members and guests.

The first meeting is Wednesday, April 17th, at 6:00 pm at the Main Campus Auditorium (1390 Community Park Dr., 43229). Gary DeLashmutt will speak on "Waxing Spiritually while Waning Physically."

Then there will be two other Pace-Setters meetings in the next few weeks. David DiPietro will teach on caring for friends or family members with terminal illness on April 24th. It will be in Room 209 at Main Campus at 6:00 pm. And on May 1st Jill Waterman will teach on "Understanding & Making the Most of Hospice," also in Room 209 starting at 6:00 pm.

The early start time for the meetings is designed to allow people to be done in time for Wednesday classes and other evening activities.

Join the Oasis Team!

Each week Oasis serves over 450 kids, helping them learn about God’s love for them, and helping them discover His wonderful plan for their lives. The ministry is looking for volunteers to serve in classrooms, lead music or skits, and help with administrative work for the coming year, starting in June.

Oasis Director Jeff Risley says it’s not only a fun role, but it’s also spiritually significant work, sometimes giving the volunteers the opportunity to be the first to tell a child about God. And the volunteers also demonstrate God’s character and attributes. “They show kids that God is not some passive kill-joy who wants to ruin their fun, but a loving father who wants to enable them to have the best life possible.”

Jeff says it takes over 400 volunteers to cover the roles across all Xenos locations, and each year need about 100 new workers to fill in for current volunteers who move to other ministries or take a year off.

Jeff says these volunteers not only serve the kids, but also serve their parents, making Central Teachings a welcoming place for families, and giving mom and dad a chance to focus on the teaching.

And he says serving in this role benefits the volunteers—they can learn to teach, lead small groups, and work on a team. “Oasis is a great training ground.  As people grow in their primary ministry in their home groups, Oasis can supplement that growth by giving extra chances to serve, teach, and provide an avenue for loving service.”

If you’re considering it, you need to be an active home group member. Jeff says they like for people to be able to make an every-other week commitment, so they can better build relationships with the kids, but that they do allow for service once per month or every week if needed.

You can learn more about volunteering at xenos.org/oasis and you can fill out an application by clicking volunteer on that page.

Sign Up Now for an XSI Volunteer Role

The Xenos Summer Institute is 3 months away and the call is going out for volunteers—over 350 are needed to make the conference a success. In addition to being a part of something eternally significant, volunteers get free conference registration.

The conference draws over 3,500 people each year, and with only 4 paid staff members, XSI Director Kim Van Keuls says volunteers are an essential part of the operation. She says they not only take care of needed tasks, but also serve as a friendly host to the thousands of people attending. “This conference would not be possible if it wasn't for the volunteers! I receive feedback about how helpful our folks are and the sense of community that people experience here.”

Kim says volunteering is very flexible, with many different opportunities, and the chance to work as many or as few hours as they like. She says one of the benefits is enjoying the excitement of what God is doing through XSI. “When you volunteer you get to see the big picture of what God is doing and how He uses this event. Volunteers typically get to hear people's stories about what they are learning and experiencing.”

Study Center to Move This Month

The Xenos Study Center will likely be moving this month from Main Campus to its new location at the Warehouse complex. Depending on final inspections, the move is tentatively set for next week. If things go well, Operations Coordinator Steve Bauer says the new space should be open for use after the week of April 15th.

The main reason for the move is the need for improved staff space for senior leadership at Main Campus. The plan is to convert the current Office Auditorium to office space for senior leaders (several of whom currently have no dedicated desk space) so they can work together more easily.

The current Study Center will then be converted into a meeting space, replacing the space being renovated for the new leadership offices. The Office Auditorium is currently heavily used by several groups, and Xenos is working with those groups to accommodate their needs while the space is being renovated. The new auditorium space should be ready sometime in June, and Steve says it will be more conducive to event hosting than the current Office Auditorium.

The move will also accommodate the Study Center’s changing needs. The new study space will be more centrally located for Xenos’ diverse age groups--closer to campus, but not too far from suburbs. Equipping Division Coordinator Pat Reeder says it will offer the same warm atmosphere and resources. And he says it'll be a great place to study--"While the main area will be for quiet study, there will be numerous private study spaces to reserve for discipleship or other private meetings."

Thanks to a delivery service you'll still be able to pick up Study Center resources and materials at the Main Campus office as well as take make-up class exams there.

How You Can Support XSI Anytime, Anywhere

The organizers of the Xenos Summer Institute are hoping you’ll consider being a part of one of its greatest volunteer pools—a role you can fulfill from your home or office. It’s looking for folks to be part of its prayer team.

Prayer is the most valuable role I see when it comes to hosting XSI. This is God's event, used for His purposes,” says XSI Director Kim Van Keuls. “Praying for this conference, the speakers, the guests, the staff, and for God's timely Word to be spoken is the fuel that drives the engine.”

Each week team members get an email with items to pray for, as well items to thank God for. Team leader Catherine Gilbert says as time goes by, the team starts to regularly see items it previously prayed for become answered prayers.

Catherine says her role in the team grew out her helping to get XSI prayer requests out more regularly. “The more I helped with that, the more concerned I was about how the XSI staff were doing in the midst of all the work it takes to make XSI happen.”

The prayer team’s work extends from that need to beyond—guests, speakers, and all the behind-the-scenes work. “Prayer makes all the logistics happen so Xenos members and guests benefit from an organized conference,” Catherine says. “XSI would not run as smoothly as it does today if it weren't for the lots of prayers from the prayer team.”

You can join the team through this link. You must be a Xenos Home Group member to join. Catherine says your efforts will not only help the conference, but will also benefit you personally. “You’ll see what God accomplishes through your commitment to pray for XSI, and through that, build your desire to pray for even bigger things in your life.

This year's Summer Institute runs from July 10-12, and the theme is Christ over All. You can register online now and volunteer recruitment starts in April. Visit xenos.org/xsi for more information.

Inaugural Missions Night a Big Success

The Xenos Missions Division recently offered the first of what will be a regular event--Missions Night. Canco Casassa with the Missions Division shares about this well-received evening:

Last week Xenos members got together for our first Missions Night to celebrate what God is doing in missions at Xenos. Although members of our church have been faithfully praying for years in diverse settings for our many fields, this is the first time in a long time that we've hosted a Missions Night in this design. The theme of the night was our Global Partners in the Kingdom of Cambodia.

160 people got together to hear presentations on why we should pray for missions, Josh Benadum on Mercy Medical Center, Kristen Peltier on Fountain of Hope and Joe Schweitzer on Friendship Ministries. Attendees also spent time praying in small groups for our ministries in Cambodia and all our other fields. Although the meeting itself lasted only one hour, people stayed for a long time, hanging out and enjoying snacks. Attendees also could take home a booklet with prayer updates to pray individually and to bring to their home groups' prayer group.

The main purpose of the meeting is to cover our partners in prayer and lift up what God is doing through missions at Xenos. An additional goal of the meeting is to establish a regular platform where everyone in Xenos can come celebrate what is happening in missions. By spreading information and promoting prayer we hope to create a motivated, unified, and informed community of mission supporters. It was a great privilege to have current and veteran missionaries, mission advocates, donors, and Xenos members all together praying and hanging out. Attendees also commented on the joy they felt when they saw a wide range of people from every demographic and age group praying with one other.

Follow Xenos on Social Media

We've been updating and consolidating Xenos accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites. Please connect with these new accounts so you can stay up-to-date and hear amazing stories of how God is working here and around the world!

Here are links for different outlets:

 

Register Now for XSI

Registration is now open for this year's Xenos Summer Institute, July 10-12. This year's theme is "Christ Over All," with most teachings centering around the topic of what it looks like to give Christ our all and to reject the world system.

Registration is quick and easy--go to xenos.org/xsi and you can take care of it. By registering early you'll skip the line on the day of the conference. You'll also have the earliest access to sign up for breakout sessions.

This year's conference will bring in Saturation Church Planting International founder Dwight Smith and Houston Baptist University apologetics professor Nancy Pearcey.

The cost to attend the Summer Institute is far less than you would pay for the same speakers at other conferences. XSI is only $20 for Xenos members and $5 if you're a student--comparable seminars cost a couple hundred dollars! Folks from outside Xenos can register for only $60 ($20 for students). Christians of all levels of experience and ministry will find theological teachings to stretch their minds and practical information to fuel their ministry.

Gracehaven Celebrates New Facility

Xenos ministry partner Gracehaven recently opened a new residential facility, fulfilling a long-term plan to help underage victims of sex trafficking in Central Ohio. Annette Vasulka with Gracehaven shares with us more about the journey to this achievement.  

Gracehaven actually began in 2004 with a phone call.

Dr. Jeff Barrows, an OB-GYN in Bellefontaine, learned about the dire plight of young girls in Asia who were victims of child sex-trafficking and wanted to help.  But during a phone conversation with Adam Freer of the Salvation Army he learned that there were girls in Ohio--as many as 1,000-2,000--who also were victimized for sex. And very few people were doing anything about it.

“What do they need?” Dr. Barrows asked. The answer surprised him--a residential home where these girls can live and take time to heal and receive therapy for their trauma.

“At that moment God called me to start a home here in Ohio for girls under 18 who were victims of sex trafficking...and He wanted the home called ‘Gracehaven.’"

Xenos played a critical role during these early years. Bev DeLashmutt joined the first Board of Trustees and was a passionate advocate for this mission. Many Xenos members provided the funding to get the work off the ground. And we are so thankful for the many volunteers, supporters and Board members from our fellowship who have served through the years.

New Session of HEART Starts Soon

H.E.A.R.T.--Healing the Effects of Abortion Related Trauma--will be starting a new session on Saturday, March 2nd at 9:00 am at the Xenos Main Office (1340 Community Park Dr., 43229). After that first week, the group will meet on Wednesday evenings.

The workshop runs 7 weeks, and addresses some of the difficult thoughts and emotions raised by an abortion, including guilt, shame, grief and secrecy. It offers a confidential, caring atmosphere and uses God's word to gain a deeper understanding of His mercy, grace and forgiveness.

Cost is $20 for adults and $10 for students. If you have questions or want to register, email Jill at jillfwaterman@gmail.com or Kim at kphillips1351@gmail.com. You may also call or text Jill at 614-309-6853.

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