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This week at FMC

February 3-9, 2021

My eyes were opened reading the Gospel of Luke at a period of my life where I felt directionless. The Spirit of God used these stories of welcome to folks who were outsiders, or who needed healing, or who needed mercy to open my heart to others around me. For that reason, I feel blessed that we at First are reading the Gospel of Luke during this Lenten season. I would like to read and discuss Luke with you.

 I think it is important to read Scripture with one another, not just in the context of a worship service or class, but in an informal dialogue where we can let the Scripture soak in, allow the Spirit to move, explore questions, and hear each other’s story and insights as we interact with one another on the passage we are reading together.

So, on Tuesday evenings we will try a zoom meeting where we read a part of the Luke story and listen to one another. Tonight, we will give attention to all of Luke 6.

Information on how to join the zoom is below:

  • You are invited to a scheduled Zoom meeting
  • Topic:  Tuesday Evening FMC – Discussion of Luke
  • Every Tuesday at 7:00pm, until Apr 6, 2021 (10 occurrences)
  • Join tonight: Feb 2, 2021 7:00 PM Central Time
  • Add to your calendar:  Feb 9, Feb 16, Feb 23, Mar 2, Mar 9, Mar 16, Mar 23, Mar 30, Apr 6, 2021 at 7:00 PM
  •  Click to join zoom:

— Pastor Jim

SUNDAY MORNING Worship Live Stream @ 9:30am

The link for Sunday morning worship (as well as archives of past worship services) is found on our website:!


The 2021 Congregational Ministry Team (Delon Martens-chair, Jennalee Boggs-chair-elect, Julie Esau, Kevin Martin Nisly, Carol Moore, and the pastors) has affirmed the decision made late last fall by the 2020 CMT (on the recommendation of the RE-Opening Task Force – Carol Moore, Dohn Fast, Joretta Martens, Todd Esau, Pastor Tonya) to limit in-person gatherings at the church to 10 for the time being.  This includes worship and Sunday School.  We encourage everyone who can to join in worship via the live stream and Sunday School by Zoom.  Masks, physical distancing, and handwashing are required of everyone in the building.  CMT and the Re-Opening Taskforce will continue to evaluate this policy, based on data from the Reno County Health Department.  Please watch this announcement for updates.

SUNDAY, February 7:  Jesus Way: Breathing Life into Death (Raising the Widow’s Son) Luke 7:1-17

  • Preacher:  Pastor Tonya Ramer Wenger
  • Worship Leader:  Calvin Buller
  • Children’s Time:  Delon Martens
  • Scripture Reader:  TBA
  • Organist:  Pauline Buller
  • Sound:  Jasper Nisly
  • Live Stream:  Jonathan Wenger


During each worship service, you are invited to text your prayer joys and concerns – usually to Pastor Tonya, but sometimes it will be someone else, and we’ll give you that info at the time!!  You are also welcome to send prayer joys & concerns during the week.

Since our worship link is now public, when you submit prayer requests be sure to let us know if you’d prefer it NOT be shared on Sunday morning.  We can keep requests more private by only sharing them in the weekly prayer email sent out on Tuesdays. 


Announcements are scrolled Sunday mornings before (beginning around 9:25) and after the worship service.  There will be no spoken announcements unless there are pressing announcements that did not make it into the PowerPoint.  Please send any announcements you’d like to have included by Thursday each week. 


  • February 7 – Senior Youth Super Bowl Sub Sandwich fundraiser (signup deadline is Thu, Feb. 4)
  • February 17 – Ash Wednesday Worship

DEEPENING in Christ…


This group meets Thursday mornings from 10-11am in the library (with masks and distancing).  All are welcome. 


This winter and spring we’ll be listening to and learning from the Gospel of Luke.  Guided by the Narrative Lectionary, we’ll follow Luke’s story of Jesus all the way through Lent and Easter.  After Jesus gave his sermon in Nazareth (in Luke 4:14-30) the crowd’s amazement turned to rage, and we’re told Jesus escaped their violent plans to throw him off a cliff and “went on his way.”  Each Sunday in this series we’ll explore different aspects of “The Jesus Way,” with the hope of growing in maturity as disciples still seeking Jesus’ Way today.

Here’s a look at upcoming themes before the beginning of Lent:

  • February 7: The Jesus Way: Breathing Life into Death (Raising the Widow’s Son) Luke 7:1-17 Pastor Tonya preaching
  • February 14: The Jesus Way:  Transformation & Freedom (Transfiguration) Luke 9:28-45 Pastor Tonya preaching


 Gather on ZOOM Tuesday evenings @ 7pm with Pastor Jim Unruh to let the words and actions of Jesus in Luke speak to us beyond Sunday morning.  What’s the good news and how can we respond?  Thefocus each Tuesday evening will be on the Luke text from the previous Sunday. The Zoom link is in the opening message from Pastor Jim. Contact Pastor Jim with questions!!

LENT 2021: The Jesus Way Leads to the Cross

Our Lent worship will focus on the theme “The Jesus Way Leads to the Cross” as we continue our study of the Gospel of Luke.  Lent begins with Ash Wednesday on February 17, which will be a joint worship service with Community Church of the Brethren.  More details about this service will be coming soon.  If you’d be interested in helping shape our Lent worship services, please contact Pastor Tonya ASAP.  For now, we anticipate services to continue to be primarily live streamed with limited numbers in the sanctuary.

  • Ash Wednesday (Feb 17) – Jesus Turns to Jerusalem
  • Lent 1 (Feb 21) – The Jesus Way Leads to the Cross: LOVE MOVING (Good Samaritan)
  • Lent 2 (Feb 28) – The Jesus Way Leads to the Cross:  HEARTS TURNING (Lament over Jerusalem)
  • Lent 3 (March 7) – The Jesus Way Leads to the Cross: COMMUNITY GATHERING (Lost Sheep, Coin, Son)
  • Lent 4 (March 14) – The Jesus Way Leads to the Cross:  MERCY REACHING (Rich Man & Lazarus)
  • Lent 5 (March 28) – The Jesus Way Leads to the Cross: LOST SAVING (Blind Man & Zacchaeus)

UPPER ROOM and REJOICE! devotional magazines

The January/February issue of UPPER ROOM is available above the mailboxes.  Please let us know if you would like a copy mailed to you. 


  • Kindergarten – 6th grade:  Sunday @ 4:00pm on ZOOM
  • 7th-8th grades:  Sunday @ 11:30am on ZOOM
  • High School youth:  Sunday @ 11:00am – currently meeting online

Adult Sunday School @ 11am on Sundays on ZOOM  (Meets the first three Sundays of the month)

Below is the schedule for this Adult Bible Study using the Salt and Light discussion guide written this quarter by Timothy J. Geddert, professor of New Testament at Fresno Pacific University (copies available at the church, or can be sent to you):

  • FEB 7 – Tonya facilitating.  “Living as Holy People,” Leviticus 19:1-18.
  • FEB 14 – Calvin facilitating.  “Nourishing Holiness,” 1 Peter 2:1-10.
  • FEB 21 – Jim facilitating.  “Physical Holiness,” 1 Corinthians 6:12-20.

Check your email for the ZOOM link or contact Pastor Tonya.  If you are unable to access ZOOM and want to participate, you may come in person. 

Masks and physical distancing practices will continue for all in-person gatherings at the church.

STRENGTHENING Community Connections…


Please send changes in your address, cell phone or land line numbers, and email addresses to the church office.   We rely on these connections during these unusual times.  Please make sure the contact information we have for you and for your children is current.  Thank you for getting this to the office ASAP.


2020 giving receipts for those who made contributions during the past year are in the church mailboxes.  If you would like yours mailed to your home address, please call the church office.


The Senior Youth will once again be preparing Super Bowl Sub sandwiches for Super Bowl Sunday (February 7). Sign up by Thursday, February 4, for your choice of Turkey OR Ham and Salami. As usual, we will not go cheap on the fixings. 

Cost: $8 each. Sign up link:

Or, if you prefer, place your order by calling the church office or Jonathan Wenger. 

Drive through pick up @ the church on Sunday, February 7 between 1:00-3:00pm (or contact Jonathan Wenger directly to arrange a different pick up or delivery time if needed).
As always, the youth very much appreciate your support!

BEAUTIFUL SALT CITY PODCAST                                    

A future story tells us what we want (vision), why we want it (values), and how we will create it (resources). Our own Pastor Jim Unruh talks with people in our community to learn their life stories and to dream together for a future story for our beautiful salt city.  Find it here: and check back each Saturday/Sunday to listen to a new conversation!


  • Tuesday and Thursday 9:00am – 2:00
  • Wednesday 10am-1pm 


  • Monday – Sabbath Day
  • Tuesday-Friday: generally working 9am-5pm(ish)
  • Available evenings and weekends (cell phone is most reliable)


Let the church office or Pastor Tonya know if you are willing.  We’d especially like to have more male voices!

STRETCHING to Serve as Christ Served…


Personal care/hygiene items such as these are appreciated: toilet paper, laundry detergent, bath soap, Kleenex, deodorant, disposable razors, paper towels, shampoo, dish soap, hand/body lotion.  Travel size – new & unopened – are desirable.

Food bank donations may be brought to the Salvation Army.  At this time the Food Bank is particularly in need of the following:  tomato soup, cream of mushroom soup and green beans.


Lent Worship and Scripture Guide

Mennonite Church USA’s 2021 Lent at Home guide for home-based worship provides daily and weekly scripture readings, prayers and rituals for individuals and families observing Lent (Feb. 17 to April 4). View and download it here:

Menno Snapshots
Glen Guyton, executive director of Mennonite Church USA, explains the denomination’s resolution process and encourages us all to use our voices in his blog, “Do you understand the resolution process?” Read it here:

Learn, Pray, Join
During February and March, Mennonite Church USA invites you to learn more about the Anabaptist peace witness and resistance to militarism by engaging its new “Learn, Pray, Join” initiative – Cost of War.

February is Black History Month

Celebrate and learn about Mennonite Church USA’s African American Mennonite history through a timeline that highlights the people, events and work of the church from 1886 to today.


The KIPCOR Film Series at Bethel College is serving up a second helping of Cooked: Survival by Zip Code, which focuses on the deadly 1995 Chicago heat wave to illustrate how Black, Indigenous and People of Color and low-income citizens suffer the most negative impact from natural disasters. The film is an indictment of U.S. disaster preparedness, and connects extreme weather, extreme disparity (income and other) and extreme racism. Go to, “Film Series,” for a link to watch Cooked for free and a link to register for the Feb. 7 virtual discussionadvance registration is required to participate in the discussion, which will be held in break-out rooms, with leaders who include Chicagoans who experienced the 1995 heat disaster.


MCC Comforter Blitz: At Home.   The annual MCC Comforter Blitz is happening virtually this year from now through March! The Kansas Friends of MCC committee is challenging congregations and individuals to complete 300 comforters for MCC by the end of March! Read all the details and information on getting comforter making supplies from MCC at Share pictures of your work on the MCC Comforter Blitz Facebook page. Contact or 316.804.8432 with questions.

Join MCC for a series of “MCC and me” webinars to hear more about service opportunities. Are you ready to step out and into service? To gain new skills and experiences while working for relief, development and peace in the name of Christ?

MCC is working to adapt our programming as the situation with COVID-19 develops. All sessions relate to anticipated service needs, though timing and some other details may be subject to change.

  • February 25 at 10 a.m. EST: Sharing With Appalachian People (SWAP) summer staff
  • February 25 at 8 p.m. EST: International service worker
  • March 6 at 12 p.m. EST: International service worker
  • March TBD: Mobile Meat Canner

For more information and to register:


Registration is open for the Spring Scrapbook and Crafts Retreats at Camp Mennoscah on March 5-7 and March 19-21!  Once the retreats are full, sign up on the waitlist.  Register at!

Nothing’s better than a summer at camp!  Watch this video created by Mennonite Camping Association about why you should work at camp.  Applications for Camp Mennoscah Summer Staff positions are now being accepted!   

Volunteer opportunities at Camp Mennoscah!  We continually have year-round work to support the maintenance and upkeep of the campus and facilities. We can accommodate every group size, skill set and length of project you would like to tackle. Check out these ways to Get Involved! 

Email  or call 620-297-3290 to volunteer. 

Camp Mennoscah – year ‘round opportunities!  Camp Mennoscah is a wonderful space for families and groups needing space to spread out!  Facilities for differently sized groups are available with a variety of gathering areas.  Trails and fields are waiting to be hiked and used for fun activities, too!  Contact Camp Mennoscah at 620-297-3290 or to reserve.  You are invited to enjoy this sacred space!


Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary is offering two new scholarships:

  • The Multicultural Church Scholarship is for students who are currently serving in or preparing for ministry assignments in a multicultural context and/or who belong to historically underrepresented racial or ethnic groups within the Mennonite Church. Each year, this award will provide a limited number of 100-percent tuition grants to full-time students beginning a master’s program, or a limited number of 75-percent tuition grants to part-time students beginning a master’s program.
  • The MDiv Connect Student Scholarship provides a limited number of 75-percent tuition grants to students beginning the Master of Divinity (MDiv) Connect program.

For more information: 


Please put July 2 and 3, 2021 on your church calendar for this year’s Kansas Mennonite Relief Sale to be held at the Kansas State Fair grounds.  We are hoping and praying that COVID-19 will be under control by July so we can hold the sale this year.