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This week at FMC

THIS WEEK @ FMC – February 21-27, 2024

O Lord, grant me to greet the coming day in peace, help me in all things to rely upon your holy will.

In every hour of the day reveal your will to me. Bless my dealings with all who surround me. Teach me to treat all that comes to me throughout the day with peace of soul and with firm conviction that your will governs all.

In all my deeds and words, guide my thoughts and feelings. In unforeseen events, let me not forget that all are sent by you. Teach me to act firmly and wisely, without embittering and embarrassing others. Give me strength to bear the fatigue of the coming day with all that it shall bring. Direct my will, teach me to pray. And you, yourself, pray in me. AMEN 

(Orthodox prayer, from Metropolitan Philaret, from Moscow. Dates to middle of the 19th century. Quoted in Scot McKnight’s book Praying With the Church.)


Welcome to the annual “sickly” season!  It comes around every year but that doesn’t mean we should be complacent because even the common cold can be deadly.  You can become severely ill with an array of bugs other than COVID.  So protect yourself by following best health practices such as washing hands frequently, avoiding crowds or wearing masks, staying up-to-date with vaccinations, and staying home if not feeling well. 


Since the IRS has raised the standard deduction threshold and those with IRA’s can send directly to charitable organizations to help meet their minimum required distributions, the need to receive your annual contribution report has been diminished for income tax purposes.  Therefore, instead of stuffing mailboxes with annual giving reports, if you would like your giving report from FMC, please let me know I will get you yours.  You can reach me at or 620-474-1224. – Mike Dirks


The link to join is on our website:  Join 5 minutes early for announcements.  The bulletin can be found under the BULLETINS tab on our home page.


Lord Jesus, it was hard for your disciples to hear that they would have to suffer in order to follow you. Give us faith and courage to follow you when following is painful or frightening. Amen.

  • Mark 10:32-52; (Psalm 34:11-14)
  • Preacher: Tonya Ramer Wenger
  • Worship Leader: Jon Miller
  • Children’s Time: Lona Willems
  • Scripture Reader: Anita Kehr
  • Pianist: Peggy Kauffman
  • Ushers: Glenda & Rick Hooper
  • Nursery Attendant: No attendant this week
  • Sound Tech: Murray Reimer
  • Live Stream Tech: Jonathan Wenger


During each worship service, you are invited to text your prayer joys and concerns – usually to Pastor Tonya.  You are also invited to send prayer joys & concerns during the week. The recording of our worship service is public, so let us know if you’d prefer your request to only be shared via email during the week.  


Announcements are scrolled Sunday mornings before and after worship.  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 to the church office by Thursday each week. 


We welcome, and are grateful for, your financial donations to our ministry here in Hutchinson.  Instead of collecting an offering during worship (except on special occasions), an offering box is placed at the back of the sanctuary for your Sunday morning donations.  You can also now make a donation directly from our website ( using a credit card or your banking account.  You are also welcome to send a check to 52 Rambler Rd Hutchinson KS 67502. 


We’ve raised $4,050! Our goal to raise $4,000 has been met! At our 2023 Annual Meeting the congregation voted to pursue installation of solar panels to provide part of our building’s electricity usage, to update our fire alarm system, and to install magnetic door openers on the internal fire doors. Funding for all three of these projects will be through the Wedel Fund. Criterion for the use of money from the Wedel Fund is that 10% of the cost must be raised in advance. Our goal of $4,000 needed in order to move forward with these projects using Wedel Funds, has beeb net. Thank you for your generosity!


  • Feb 23 – Mennonite Friendship Communities Liverwurst & Fried Mush Fundraiser dinner 5-8pm
  • Feb 24 – Singing Group @ Wenger’s (5:30 potluck, 6:30 singing)
  • Feb 28 – Choir rehearsals begin for Lent / Easter season (Wednesdays @ 5:30pm); all singers welcome!
  • Feb 28 – WNAF (Wednesday Nights @ First) series begins
  • April 12-13 – Kansas Mennonite Relief Sale

REMINDER:  If you are last one out of the church building, be SURE the doors lock behind you.

DEEPENING in Christ…


A Prayer group meets Thursday mornings from 10-11am in the Prayer Room.  All are welcome. 

A small ecumenical Centering Prayer group meets on Thursdays (in person @ FMC) from 12:30-1:30pm.  If you’d like to learn more, contact Pastor Tonya.    

LPC: Listening-Prayer-Conversation Groups

These groups meet for an hour once/month in the Common Grounds room and are facilitated by Pastor Tonya.  The format allows for time in prayer by yourself and also with the group.  Any are welcome to join, or to just come and check it out! It’s also possible to join on Zoom if you prefer.

  • The Tuesday group next meeting TBD
  • The Wednesday evening group meets 6:30pm on THURSDAY, Feb 15


CHILDREN’S CLASSES (preschool-6th grade) meet in the basement.

SENIOR YOUTH (8th-12th grade) meet upstairs.


Calvin Buller will lead us in a study of the Passion/Easter parts of G. F. Handel’s MESSIAH. We will explore the music and the scriptures behind the lyrics. This is a 6-week series beginning February 18.

And, the YOUNGER ADULTS CLASS meeting in the library.  For more details, talk with Maggie or Adam Pounds. 

LENT 2024: Formed, Filled & Sent: Encountering Jesus in the Gospel, at the Table, & on the Road

This year our Lenten journey will explore how we are formed, filled and sent as we encounter Jesus in the Gospel of Mark, at the Lord’s Table, and on the Road of our daily discipleship journey.  The 40 days of Lent offer many opportunities to encounter Jesus:

            … in the Gospel (good news!) stories, alongside the disciples and all kinds of other characters

            … at the Lord’s Table, where we believe the Risen Christ is revealed in the breaking of the bread

            … and on the Road, as we encounter Jesus in our ordinary lives, growing as disciples here and now

Unique to this year’s Lenten worship experience will be the invitation to come to the Lord’s Table each of the Sundays of Lent (beginning Feb 18), on Maundy Thursday, and Easter.  As people longing to faithfully follow Jesus in the world we live in today, the Table is a place where we encounter the living Christ, to be formed, filled and sent.  We go out into the world not primarily as individuals, but more importantly, as part of a global community stitched together by the very presence of Jesus with us, and within us.

“To eat the bread and drink the cup in remembrance of Christ is to recall the death and resurrection of our Savior with such vividness as to make ourselves present to these events not merely as historical occurrences but as present, living, and transforming realities in our lives today.”

(Rory Noland.  Transforming Worship. 144)

BOOK STUDY GROUP – meeting Wednesdays at 1:00pm

Ballot and the Bible: How Scripture Has Been Used and Abused in American Politics and Where We Go From Here, a new book by Kaitlyn Schiess, is our selection for our spring study. This group meets weekly on Wednesdays at 1:00pm. Members share the responsibility of leading the discussion. If you would like to join the group, talk with Pastor Tonya asap. New members are welcome!


The winter chill will be hanging around for a bit longer, so now’s the time to check out the great reads in our church library, including the books on the north window ledge, shared by Pastor Tonya. Listen to what contemporary authors are saying about questions and issues relevant to faithful witness in our world today. In addition to the books Pastor Tonya is sharing, the library has acquired many new books. Come . . . relax . . . find inspiration . . . take comfort . . . and be challenged to faithful Christian witness. There’s a book for every reader right here in our library!!

UPPER ROOM and REJOICE! devotional magazines

New issues of UPPER ROOM and Rejoice! are available above the mailboxes. Please let us know if you would like a copy mailed to you.

STRENGTHENING Community Connections…


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


Office hours:

  • Monday: Day Off
  • Tuesday-Friday: generally working 8:00am-5:30pm 
  • “In Office” Hours:  9-2 Tuesday and Thursday; 10-1 on Wednesday
  • Available other times by appointment.
  • Available evenings and weekends (cell phone is most reliable)

Upcoming “Day Apart with God” dates (for silence, reading, prayer & journaling – will NOT be checking email or responding to texts/calls (except for emergencies).  Typically this is the 4th Wednesday of the month.  The next date is: Wednesday February 28 (8am-5pm)

Pastor Tonya’s Sabbatical dates (spread out between summer 2023-summer 2025)

Pastor Tonya has joined a study program called, “Transforming Community.” Retreats take place in Chicago. Her next scheduled retreat is March 10-13 (back in office on March 14). In addition, she has scheduled some vacation time prior to this retreat to visit family in Ohio (leaving Wednesday March 6).

A more extended chunk of sabbatical time will be taken in the summer of 2024: June 30-July 4 (for retreat) + July 23-August 9.


The 2024 issue is now available on the table in the foyer and in the circular rack by the mailboxes. Please continue to provide updates to your contact information throughout the year. Send to the church office If you would like to receive the directory by email attachment, please let the church office know.


Potluck begins at 5:30pm (bring a dish to share!).  Informal hymn sing from Voices Together (and other songbooks as we are inspired!) will begin around 6:30pm. Additional instruments are welcome (piano provided!). 


Join us for a 4-session series on Wednesday evenings (Feb 28, March 6, 13, and 20):

  • 5:30-6:30 Choir Rehearsal in the sanctuary (also on March 27!)
  • 6:00-7:00 Meal Served (donations welcome to cover expenses)
  • 7:00-8:00 Adult Program and Children’s Activities

The Adult program will be led by Pastor Tonya and Pastor Jim, on the theme: Centered on Jesus & Connected in Community. What does a Jesus-centered community look like today, in the realities we find ourselves in: heightened polarization, rise in Christian Nationalism, a contentious election year, and more?

We plan to interactively engage those gathered in exploring practical themes raised by Mark D. Baker in his book Centered-Set Church: Discipleship and Community Without Judgmentalism.

The children’s activities will be led by Martha Miller, on the theme “Kids Can Know the Way.”  An additional adult (or youth) volunteer to assist is needed each evening.  Please contact Martha directly, or Pastor Tonya, if you are available to help during that hour.

ARMS WIDE OPEN – FMC’s history book

The amazing story of First Mennonite Church’s 100 years is told in the history book prepared for our centennial celebration. Copies of the book are available for $25.00 (cash or check). You can also purchase a book online at a price that includes the cost of shipping (click on the “DONATE” button on our website to find this option).   Check with the church office to pick up a book.

STRETCHING to Serve as Christ Served…


February: Canned meat / tuna

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


It’s time to start dreaming of Mennonite Friendship Communities Liverwurst & Fried Mush annual dinner as the date is quickly approaching!  Join us on Friday, February 23rd from 5-8 pm at the Journey Activity Center in Yoder for Liverwurst, Fried Mush, Whole Hog Sausage, Tomato Gravy and more!  This year’s proceeds will go to renovations to the South Entrance of Healthcare.  Come enjoy good food and fellowship!  For more info, call Susan Nisly at 620-663-7175.


We are calling on you to consider the opportunity to make a difference with our eight young adults who are living at the LightHouse. We are excited to partner with Life Launch out of Tulsa, Oklahoma to provide a mentorship model to foster the healing power of safe, unpaid adult relationships for the LightHouse residents. Life Launch places 2-4 adults with one mentee to walk with them for a year. Mentees can be 18-24 years of age and currently residing at the LightHouse. Mentors will be asked to communicate with mentees weekly in a group text and hang out with their mentee for 3-8 hours a month. While you are a mentor, our team will walk with you throughout the year, continually coaching and training you as you build a relationship with your mentee. The goal of our program is for our mentees to be safe, secure and build a positive relationship.

There are three things below you can do to make this opportunity the most successful for these eight young adults.

1)     Pass this email along to your friends! We recruit from the Christian community for our mentors, but our mentees can be from all walks of life. We ask that your mentee would lead the spiritual conversations. In our Life Launch training we will cover this key question-how has Christ treated me? This will allow us to have the ideal model and guide to look back on for how we are to treat others. With Jesus as our model, our four pillars of Life Launch are Compassion, Humility, Patience and Prayer. In training, you will learn how we apply these all to being a Life Launch Mentor.  

2)     If interested in this opportunity to become a mentor, please join us on a zoom call for more information and an opportunity to ask questions on February 22nd at 11:00 am. (link provided below)

Topic: Learn about Life Launch!! 

Time: Feb 22, 2024 11:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting: Meeting ID: 854 1404 9789; Passcode: 1234

3)      Sign up for the mentor training on February 29th at 6:00 pm. at Creekside Neighborhood Church (formally known as the Hutchinson Wesleyan Church), 528 W. 10th. Dinner will be provided.

Attending training does not mean you are signing up to be a mentor, so we encourage you to come check it out! Bring your friends! We’ve found that teams where mentors already know each other and are friends are some of the best teams! Register for training

A lot of our young adults come from big hurts in their lives and need safe, unpaid adults in their life cheering them on. Safe relationships can be healing in their lives. We pray that you will consider being one of the few safe adults in this young adult’s life. 

CAMP MENNOSCAH announcements

Two volunteers are needed daily to help with Retreat Center HVAC work from Monday through Friday for the next 12 weeks.  Construction skills are not a requirement.  Contact Camp Mennoscah at 620-297-3290, text 316-293-7313 or email Half days are fine.

Spring Cleaning at Camp Mennoscah sponsored by Western District Women in Mission (WDWM) will be held on Saturday, March 23 from 10 am – 4 p.m. Come for part or all of the time. Women, men, kids, youth groups, Sunday school groups are all invited. If children younger than high school attend, they need to be supervised by their parents (no child care or children’s activities will be provided). Dress warm, bring a full water bottle, $5 to cover the cost of lunch, and the following cleaning supplies if you have them: rakes, long handled brooms for cobweb reaching. Other cleaning supplies will be provided. Register by March 18 by e-mailing Space is capped at this event to manage the jobs, so don’t delay in registering. Thanks! 

Registration for 2024 Summer Youth Camps is open!  Staff is still adjusting to the big Retreat Center project and some details are sure to have been missed–but that will not stop you from registering for a great week of camp.  The theme for the summer is Linked By Love and looks at the many ways we experience God’s love through relationships.  Register online! 

The application for 2024 Summer Staff at Camp Mennoscah is open!  Summer staff must be 18 years old or older.  The staff leadership positions receiving stipends are naturalist, crafts leader, lifeguard, grounds/maintenance, music leader, and office/media.  Applications will be accepted until all positions are filled. The 2024 summer camp season begins June 2 with orientation for summer-long positions and ends August 4.  We can’t wait to hear from you! 

BETHEL COLLEGE announcements

Sun., March 3, 4 p.m. – Bethel College Choir Spring Tour Send-off Concert


Coats for Asylum Seekers in Brownsville . . . would you volunteer to help FMC collect coats?

MCC partner Team Brownsville welcomes your gently used winter coats and jackets! Team Brownsville seeks to share God’s love by welcoming asylum seekers, including providing them with warm coats. It’s as easy as collecting your gently used coats and jackets, boxing them up and shipping (up to) 70 lb./box to Team Brownsville – just follow the instructions at this link  Spring clean your closets and help Team Brownsville prepare for next winter! Have questions? Please email the MCC Central States Immigration Team at and either Abraham Diaz Alonso or Becky Teiwes, will respond. Please talk with Pastor Tonya or call the church office if you could provide a box and help ship a box of coats from FMC.

MCC Central States annual meeting, Saturday, March 2 at 10 a.m. You are invited to join the meeting in-person or virtually to hear MCC U.S. Executive Director Ann Graber Hershberger share an MCC update. Please email if you would like the Zoom link to join virtually. Otherwise, join us at MCC Central States, 121 E. 30th St in North Newton, Kansas.

Comforter Blitz – Monday, March 4-6, 2024, Journey Mennonite Church Activity Center, Yoder

If you can tie a knot, you can make a difference. Activity center located at 3605 East Long View Rd.

  • Monday, March 4 . . 9am – 4pm
  • Tuesday, March 5 . . 9am – 9 pm
  • Wednesday, March 6 . . 9am – 4pm

Questions? Please contact  

MCC Material Resources Center in North Newton critically low on inventory: An MCC kit cannot be distributed until each item for the kit is assembled, but some supplies in the Material Resources Center are so low that kits cannot be processed for shipping. You can help by filling the following needs: new infant sleepers (6-12 month sizes); bath towels (dark colored, light to medium weight); wide-toothed combs; laundry soap (such as Fels Naptha or Zote brands); shampoo (20 oz min); fingernail clippers (good quality); and hand towels (dark colored). Locally, MCC distributes prisoner care and returning citizen care kits, for those kits we currently need:men’s T-shirts (sizes L, XL, 2XL, 3XL — any color); men’s underwear (sizes L, XL, 2XL, 3XL — any color); men’s crew socks; lotion (12 oz min); and adult backpacks. Buy online and ship it to MCC or bring items to MCC in North Newton (121 E. 30th St, North Newton, KS 67117). Questions are always welcome, please contact or 316.283.2720. A full list of MCC kit contents can be found at

Interested in working with MCC, or know someone who is? MCC is hiring a Community Engagement Coordinator!  The Community Engagement Coordinator, in North Newton, KS connects with local churches, individuals, and partners to educate on MCC material resources, programs, and events. Apply at the following link: Community Engagement Coordinator or find the job and other openings at

Join MCC Country Representatives . . . webinar on response in Gaza and West Bank – Thu Feb 29

I’m sure that you, like me, are seeing the awful destruction in Gaza day after day. But thanks to your generosity, MCC partners on the ground have been able to respond despite the very challenging circumstances. 

As someone who cares deeply for those affected by this crisis, I want to invite you to a webinar with our country program representatives. They will share an update on what they’re hearing from local partners and give updates on the emergency response projects in Gaza and the West Bank. 

The webinar will be next Thursday, February 29, at 10 am PST/11 am MST/12pm CST/1pm EST.

You can register online here. If you can’t make it on the day you can still register and we’ll send you a recording afterwards. I hope you can make it next week.   — Ann Graber Hershberger, Executive Director, MCC U.S

KANSAS MENNONITE RELIEF SALE – April 12-13, 2024 announcements

QUILTER’S CORNER welcomes your donated QUILT-RELATED ITEMS – used/unused/unfinished. Please label clearly – QUILTER’S CORNER – and drop off at the MCC Center in North Newton or contact Julie Esau. Suggested items are finished/unfinished quilt tops or quilt blocks, old and damaged quilts, quilt supplies and tools, cloth sacks, quilt books and patterns, notions and cotton fabric.

WANTED—Cars, Trucks, Motorcycles, RV’s, Campers, Tractors, Modern Farm Equipment, etc. for the KS MCC Sale. Items you no longer need can help Feed and Clothe Thousands in desperate living conditions. ALL donations are Tax Deductible. Call Jerry Toews for info: 620 367 8257. Help make a difference.   – KMRSale Committee


Global Voices Tour in Kansas – February 24-26.  Around the world, MCC’s partners work to support people in adapting to the challenges of climate change.  From February 24 – 26, the Anabaptist Climate Collaborative and MCC will be hosting two international speakers to share about the ways their communities are finding climate solutions and how you can get involved! Come and hear Caroline Pugeni of Zimbabwe and Cambodia-based Victor Odinda speak about their roles in helping communities adapt to and mitigate climate change.

  • Location: Showalter Villa, Hesston KS . . . Saturday, Feb. 24, 10:30 am
  • Location: Shalom Mennonite Church, Newton KS . . . Sunday, Feb. 25, 9:30 – 10:30 am for Sunday School
  • Location: Bethel College Convocation, Krehbiel Auditorium, Luyken Fine Arts Center . . . Monday, Feb. 26, 11:00am – 12:00pm
  • Location: Kidron Hall, Kidron Bethel Village, N. Newton KS . . . Monday, Feb. 26 , 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

For more information, email

Galen Fitzkee Legislative Associate MCC U.S. National Peace & Justice Ministries


Check out the most recent edition of Anabaptist Disabilities Network’s newsletter HERE!  This edition includes articles about chronic illness, as well as an interesting reflection on disability, prayer and healing.  You can also read a book review of: Dancing with Elephants: Mindfulness Training for those living with dementia, chronic illness, or an aging brain by Jarem Sawatzky.