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This week at FMC


September 30-October 6, 2020

Reading through the Gospels in the next 40 days. This was one of my suggestions this past Sunday morning for keeping ‘Jesus at the center of our faith’ during these days leading up to and just past the election.  To encourage and support you in this reading, I’m offering two suggestions:

The Bible Project ( is a great website I highly recommend with lots of resources for studying and learning about the Bible.  Their videos about books of the Bible and themes in scripture are well researched and engaging.  They offer a Read the Bible in a Year plan which you can download as an app for your phone or computer (search for Read Scripture – Crazy Love Ministries) –  this includes videos related to the book or themes in the book that you can click on and watch.  You can also print the plan as a pdf: Read Scripture in a Year PDF – it too will note videos to be watched but you’ll either have to sign up on Bible Project to have them emailed to you or go directly to the site to find them.  If you use this plan it’ll take you more like 45 days to read through the Gospels, but you could double up some days or just extend your time farther into November.

Another option to organize your reading is The Bible in 90 Days Bible which leads us through reading the gospels in 10 days.  So, you could use that plan, but spend 4 days reading each day’s suggested scripture:

  • Matthew 1:1-Matthew 4:24
  • Matthew 5:1-Matthew 15:39
  • Matthew 16:1-Matthew 26:56
  • Matthew 26:57-Mark 9:13
  • Mark 9:14-Luke 1:80
  • Luke 2:1-Luke 9:62
  • Luke 10:1-Luke 20:19
  • Luke 20:20-John 5:47
  • John 6:1-John 15:17
  • John 15:18-John 21:25

One of the early desert fathers (at least that’s my memory!) once described the effect of the words of scripture on our hearts as being like a slow drip of water on stone.   Slowly but surely, as the water drips steadily into our hearts, we are changed, reshaped, hollowed out to be filled more and more.  But it takes years of persistent receptivity and openness on our part, years of reading what both resonates with, frustrates and confuses us, years of mining the familiar for what we’ve never noticed or heard.  May it be so for us as we intentionally place ourselves with Peter and Andrew, James and John … setting out on an adventure of following Jesus as if we’re on it for the first time.  May God bless the reading, and hearing, and responding to, God’s Word.  And may the Spirit of the Risen Christ guide us along the way. AMEN.

Pastor Tonya 

SUNDAY MORNING Worship Live Stream @ 9:30am

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

We are welcoming around 30 people to be present in-person during our live stream. In an effort to create the safest environment possible, we ask you to wear masks, observe physical distancing and try not to congregate in the foyer but to visit outside as much as possible.  Please contact the church office by Thursday each week to make a reservation to attend in person.  We will be glad to see you!


WORLD COMMUNION SUNDAY – Join us in sharing communion with our brothers and sisters around the world.  If you are worshipping from home, please gather communion elements (bread and juice or whatever you have on hand) ahead of time; if you plan to worship in-person please let us know by Thursday so we can plan to have communion elements available for you in the sanctuary!

  • Preaching:  Dr. Joseph Manickam, president, Hesston College (via video)
  • Worship Leader:  Tonya Ramer Wenger
  • Pianist:  Shelley Kauffman
  • 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 announcements and 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. 


  • October 4 – Dr. Joe Manickam, president of Hesston College (guest preacher via video, World Communion
  • October 11 – Draft Budget for 2020-2021 will be available
  • October 25 – FMC Budget meeting – tentative date depending on COVID situation
  • November 15 – Mission Festival with Michelle Armster from MCC (date tentative)
  • November 29 – First Sunday of Advent
  • December 6 – FMC Annual meeting

Pastor Tonya @ Ministry Integrity Circles – October 5-6

Pastor Tonya is participating in a cohort of the Ministry Integrity Circles program hosted by Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary.  Rescheduled dates (due to the pandemic) are: Oct 5-6, Jan. 11-12, 2021; Apr. 12-13, 2021; and June 21-22, 2021.  Camp Friedenswald in Cassopolis, Michigan is the intended location, but the October gathering at least will be held on ZOOM instead.  This opportunity is fully funded by the Lilly Endowment and the Thriving in Ministry Grant, and so there is no cost to participate.

Pastor Tonya’s Fall Schedule

Vacation Days Scheduled:  Sept 30 (morning); October 2, October 14-16 (except for evening meetings)

October 5-6: Participating in Ministry Integrity Circles

No Donuts this Halloween

Due to the CDC’s recommendation to not trick-or-treat this year, and the interactive and physically close nature of our donut event, we will not be handing out donuts this year on Halloween.  Instead, we will look forward to Halloween 2021!

DEEPENING in Christ…


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


We will be spending 7 weeks exploring Anabaptist Essentials:  Jesus is the Center of our Faith (which began September 27), Community is the Center of our Life (Oct 4 – guest preacher Dr. Joe Manickam; also World Communion), and Reconciliation is the Center of our Work (October 11-November 8).  We hope Sunday morning worship, whether you are joining in person or from home, provides a spiritually grounding and growing space for you as we travel through ongoing complexities of the pandemic and the upcoming Presidential election. 


Hello Ladies!!  Tentatively plan on re-gathering on October 20 on Tuesdays at 10:00am at the church with your masks (likely in the Fellowship Hall where we can spread out).  Last week I included two books I’ve been considering (one studying the Psalms and the other a focus on Resurrection Hope).  I’m happy for your feedback!  And I have a few other ideas too.  Stay tuned, and feel free to weigh in!  — Pastor Tonya

UPPER ROOM and REJOICE! devotional magazines

Copies of both magazines are 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
  • Senior high:  Sunday @ 1:00pm on ZOOM

Adult discussion class book study, I Am Not Your Enemy, by Michael McRay:  Wednesdays 7-8:00pm on ZOOM.  Led by Pastor Tonya and Julie Goering.  Call the church office if you would like to join.

Adult class taught by Harold Kroeker using Salt & Light study guide, “Joining God: Relationship and Worship”:  Sunday @ 11:00am in person in the Fellowship Hall.  Copies of the study are available on the table in the foyer near the east entrance.  If you would like a copy mailed to you, please call or email the church office.

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

STRENGTHENING Community Connections…


Check out our new website!  From now on, you will be encouraged to go there for the link for weekly worship was well as the weekly email.  We’ll still send some email reminders, but you might want to bookmark so it’ll be at your fingertips!


Tuesday and Thursday 9:00am – 2:00pm

Wednesday 10:00am – 1:00pm

EXCEPTION:  The office will not be open on Wednesday (30th)


Let the church office or Pastor Tonya know if you are willing!!

STRETCHING to Serve as Christ Served…


The needs list has changed!!  If you can provide any of the following, please drop them off at Trinity UMC (use the 16th Street office door) on Tuesday between Noon-3pm or Thursday between 10am-1pm, or bring them to the church and we will deliver them.

  • Black leggings – all sizes
  • Detergents – smaller sizes for carrying
  • Dryer sheets
  • Men’s deodorant (NO women’s)
  • Chapstick
  • Refillable water bottles
  • Packaged snacks for tutoring meetings
  • Wired ear buds
  • Girls’ underwear in XS – S (0-5 jean size)

Thanks SO much for helping the kids in our hometown!


The Salvation Army and Inter-faith Housing Services are currently accepting donations on behalf of First Call for Help.  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.


“The Walk is Virtual, The Need is Real.”  Your donations support the Reno County CROP Hunger Walk sponsored by Church World Service!  The Reno County Food Bank and the Christian Soup Ministry receive a quarter of the funds; the rest supports global ministries with people who need food, water, and shelter.  By October 1, please (1) Write a check to “CWS-CROP.”  Put {the name of your church} on the memo line.  Send your check to Emanuel Lutheran Church (140 E. 30th Avenue, Hutchinson KS 67502) OR (2) Give securely on-line at  Click “Donate.” Then “General.”  Every donation will be acknowledged.  Thank you for helping our neighbors – local and global!


  • Friday, October 2, 9am – 5pm
  • Saturday, October 3, 9am – 3pm

MCC Material Resource Center, 121 East 30th, North Newton, KS

Quilter’s Corner items that would have been sold at the annual KMRS in April will be available for purchase.  Come support the relief work of MCC and start or replenish a quilting stash.  Health protocols for Harvey County will be observed during the sale.  Questions???  Contact Rose Wiebe Haury at 316-288-0079 or


Aid to Beirut, Lebanon.  Mennonite Central Committee is accepting donations to support people in need of food and other assistance in Beirut, Lebanon.  A massive explosion on August 4 destroyed the country’s main port and silos filled with grain and worsened an existing economic crisis.  You can donate online at, by calling 888-563-4676 or by sending a check earmarked for “Beirut response,” to MCC, 21 S. 12th St., Akron PA 17501.

If you can tie a knot you can help MCC!  There are lots of comforters at MCC in North Newton that need to be tied and we’re looking for volunteers!  If you would be interested in borrowing a set of sticks/stands from the MCC Workroom to set up and tie comforters at home, please contact Kate Mast at (, 316-804-8432).  Thank you!


Support Mennonite Central Committee and celebrate MCC’s centennial with a new shirt, hoodie, tea towel, bag or hat!  Check out this online store and support MCC!

Celebration 2020: MCC at 100.  A live stream event commemorating a century of MCC’s ministry on Saturday, October 17 at 6:50pm (EDT).  Information and login is at mcc.celebration-2020 .


Go here: to listen to this captivating and information presentation.  This is a September 21 post by Kathy Neufeld Dunn on the WDC facebook page.  Three presenters share their own experiences of injustice and hope.


Fall Festival at Bethel College is not canceled but will look different this year. While there won’t be a “Fall Festival fair” on campus Oct. 3, there will be a homecoming football game, a photography exhibit by David Long, and a virtual performance of a play written and directed by Karen Robu, among other events. The Bethel College Women’s Association is taking orders for baked goods at (ordering deadline: Sept. 30). See for a detailed schedule, and for links to all virtual events.

Now at KAUFFMAN MUSEUM (through Nov. 29) – “Sorting Out Race: Examining Racial Identity and Stereotypes in Thrift Store Donations.”  Regular hours are Tues.-Fr. 9:30am-4:30pm, Sat.-Sun 1:30-4:30pm, closed Mondays and major holidays, but with ever-changing COVID-19 protocols, you are advised to check the museum website,  or Facebook page or call 316-283-1612 before planning a visit.

Do you have skills with sewing machine?  Consider making masks for the Bethel community.  Send them to Bethel’s Advancement Office.


The Everence Webinar Wednesday series features “Scam proof your finances: Defending yourself,” on September 30.  Click here to register register:

Coming up on October 7 is, “Simplicity: Finding focus and decluttering our lives.”  Plan now to participate.  For any questions, please contact Melissa Short at 800-348-7468 x3392 or