Today, I met up with my friend and clergy colleague Rev. Nathan Whybrew, who serves as the Senior Pastor of First United Methodist Church of Wabash. Actually, I should say that I met up with pastor and coach Nathan. He is a baseball coach with three boys who all play baseball! This means that Nathan is at the church and at a baseball diamond nearly every day.
Growing up in Monticello, IN, he was a Chicago Cubs fan. As you can see in our picture of today’s game of catch, he is a big Cubs fan! I really liked his festive Cubs fan shirt! Similar to my experience, Nathan first sensed a call to ministry while in college and began pastoring while in seminary at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis. He has served churches in Colfax, Munster, Fort Wayne, Frankton, and now in Wabash. Nathan is a good and committed pastor, has a wonderful family, and is an all-around great guy!
We met in the morning for a game of catch, but it was still hot and humid. This whole week has been hot, so meeting my catch participants in the morning made sense. We met at a local park with a really nice playground. His two youngest boys also brought their gloves to play catch but opted for the playground. It sounds like they get plenty of time on the diamond, so it worked out well for them to play on the playground while the dads played catch.
Nathan and I talked a little shop during our time together. When I’m playing with fellow clergy colleagues, I try not to focus too much on church business during that time. I mean, we certainly check in about families and our ministries, but it’s nice to talk baseball and sports as we tossed the ball and forth.
Today was another reminder of the importance of being intentional in our relationships. These 30 days of catch have made me intentional about reaching out to friends, family, and colleagues to play a game of catch. I have also appreciated colleagues like Nathan reaching out about playing catch. It has reminded me to spend more time with others for lunch, a cup of coffee, or even a game of catch. As we continue to recover and rebuild after the pandemic years of social distancing and shutdowns, it’s good to be intentional about seeing others in person.
After ten or so minutes, I asked Nathan if he was perspiring enough to wrap it up. We both laughed as I said let’s take several steps back and act like we’re in the big leagues. We might not have been too sweaty before, but we were after we played long ball. I will say it was a lot of fun to throw it far to one another, acting like we were baseball players.
I am now 25 days into my 30 days of catch. I’m almost to the end, which is hard to believe. It has been such a fun month, and I have enjoyed every single game of catch and every conversation. Today was yet another opportunity to reconnect with a friend and colleague and enjoy a simple game of catch for a great cause!
Here is an update on the financial fundraiser for Gleaners. We are at $17,943, less than $60 from $18,000. Can you help me get to my new goal of $20,000? Let’s keep it going!
If you feel moved to share a financial donation for my Gleaners fundraiser, use the link below.
Also, don’t forget to invite family and friends to join me for my Final Day of Catch Party behind the main church building near the playgrounds on Thursday, August 31st, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. We will welcome Rowdie, the awesome mascot from the Indianapolis Indians, and will give out free popsicles. Join us for the celebration!
Here is the event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1226246214719825/?ref=newsfeed
Get outside. Play catch. Find something that brings joy and a smile to your face.
Thank you for supporting Gleaners and following my 30 days of catch!