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Thirteen and a half years we’ve lived in Kansas, and this is the first time I remember snow lasting more than a few days. Our Kansas-born youngest child (the older 3 were born in Wisconsin) proclaimed this morning how very tired she is of all this snow and ice; how much she is longing for it all to melt! In a climate where snow usually disappears quickly, we have a unique opportunity in this moment to receive the gifts of this season. The prayer below (written by Ted Loder), for a sense of God’s timing, invites us to find important opportunities for new awareness and growth in the ‘gray and white and cold.’ May it be so!
Grant Me Your Sense of Timing (written by Ted Loder. Guerrillas of Grace: Prayers for the Battle)
O God of all seasons and senses, grant me your sense of timing
to submit gracefully and rejoin quietly in the turn of the seasons.
In this season of short days and long nights,
of gray and white and cold,
teach me the lessons of waiting:
of the snow joining the mystery
of the hunkered-down seeds growing in their sleep
watched over by gnarled-limbed, grandparent trees
resting from autumn’s staggering energy;
of the silent, whirling earth
circling to race back home to the sun.
O God, grant me your sense of timing.
In this season of short days and long nights,
of gray and white and cold,
Teach me the lessons of endings:
children growing, friends leaving,
jobs concluding, stages finishing,
grieving over, grudges over,
blaming over, excuses over.
O God, grant me your sense of timing.
In this season of short days and long nights,
of gray and white and cold,
Teach me the lessons of beginnings:
that such waitings and endings
may be a starting place,
a planting of seeds
which bring to birth
what is ready to be born – something right and just and different,
a new song
a deeper relationship,
a fuller love – in the fullness of your time.
O God, grant me your sense of timing.
WINTER HEALTH ADVISORY
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.
2023 INDIVIDUAL CONTRIBUTION REPORTS
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 firstname.lastname@example.org or 620-474-1224. – Mike Dirks
SUNDAY MORNING WORSHIP at 9:30am
- The link to join is on our website: www.hutchfmc.org Join 5 minutes early for announcements.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 28, 2024 – PARABLES IN MARK
God of the Word, in the parable of the sower you showed us how your word can take root and grow within us. Nurture the seeds of your word in our hearts and help us to grow in faith and love. Amen.
- Preacher: Tonya Ramer Wenger
- Worship Leader: Anita Kehr
- Children’s Time: Julie Goering
- Scripture Reader: Hilda Iwashige & Lucia Iwashige
- Organist: Pauline Buller
- Song Leader: TBA
- Ushers: Russ Gaeddert & Diane Ziemer
- Nursery Attendant: TBA
- Sound Tech: Murray Reimer
- Live Stream Tech: Jonathan Wenger
SHARING JOYS & CONCERNS
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 (www.hutchfmc.org) using a credit card or your banking account. You are also welcome to send a check to 52 Rambler Rd Hutchinson KS 67502.
INVITATION TO DONATE: SOLAR PANELS & UPDATING FIRE ALARM SYSTEM
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. In order to move forward with these projects using Wedel Funds, we need to raise approximately $4,000. We are inviting contributions over the next few weeks in order to schedule these projects with our vendors. Contributions may be made online or by check with a designation for “Solar Panels & Fire Alarms.”
CALENDAR – LOOKING AHEAD
- Jan 24 – Joint Congregational Ministry Team + Coordination Teams 6:30pm.
- Jan 27 – FMC serves at the Soup Kitchen
- Jan 31 – Faithful Community Coordination Team 1:00pm
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 meets again at 1:00pm on Tuesday, February 13.
The Wednesday evening group meets 6:30pm on THURSDAY, Feb 14
SUNDAY SCHOOL CLASSES FOR EVERYONE
CHILDREN’S CLASSES (preschool-6th grade) meet in the basement.
SENIOR YOUTH (8th-12th grade) meet upstairs.
ADULT BIBLE STUDY, using Salt & Light curriculum from Menno Media. This class is facilitated by Calvin Buller and Marlene Thode and meets in the adult Sunday School room in the basement.
ADULT DISCUSSION CLASS meets in the Fellowship Hall in person and on zoom. On January 7 this group began a new DVD based study: Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster. Pastor Jim and Pastor Tonya facilitate. More details below.
And, the YOUNGER ADULTS CLASS meeting in the library. For more details, talk with Maggie or Adam Pounds.
CELEBRATION OF DISCIPLINE: THE PATH TO SPIRITUAL GROWTH
Join the Adult Discussion Class for a DVD based study of Richard Foster’s book Celebration of Discipline. This classic book on spiritual growth was first written in 1978 and has stood the test of time in its relevance to people seeking a path of spiritual growth. This study will provide you with spiritual practices to explore and implement in your daily life, as well as a community to discuss with and learn alongside. All are welcome to join at any time! Participant guidebooks are provided. If you can help cover the $6.50 cost per book we’d welcome that.
HANDEL’S MESSIAH – LENT STUDY during Sunday school hour
A study of Handel’s MESSIAH will be offered the six Sundays during Lent (beginning February 18). This study will be held in the fellowship hall during the regular Sunday school hour. The study will include hearing MESSIAH and learning how Handel paints pictures in sound. Calvin Buller will lead the study. (The “Celebration of Discipline” study will pause during this time and reconvene on April 14.)
GOSPEL OF MARK WORSHIP SERIES CONTINUES THROUGH EASTER
Beginning Sunday January 14, we turned toward the story of the good news of Jesus as told by Mark. This story will carry us through Lent and Easter (on March 31). May our journey through this story bring us closer to Jesus and more aligned with his good road of beauty and harmony.
ASH WEDNESDAY WORSHIP – FEB 14 AT 6:30PM with COMMUNITY CHURCH OF THE BRETHREN
Gather with our friends from the Church of the Brethren on Wednesday Feb 14 at 6:30pm in the FMC fellowship hall to mark the beginning of Lent with our annual Ash Wednesday service. This service includes prayers, scripture, music, imposition of ashes, and prayers around the cross. We do plan to offer a livestream for those wanting to join remotely.
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…
CHURCH OFFICE HOURS
- Tuesday and Thursday 9:00am – 2:00pm
- Wednesday – 10:00am – 1:00pm (Office will not be open Wednesday this week, 1/24)
PASTOR TONYA’S HOURS/SCHEDULE
- 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 January 24, 2024 (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).
FMC FAITH FAMILY DIRECTORY
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 email@example.com. If you would like to receive the directory by email attachment, please let the church office know.
NEXT SINGING GROUP @ WENGER’S – FRIDAY JANUARY 26
All are invited to the Wenger’s for a potluck (beginning at 6pm) and informal hymn-singing (beginning around 7pm). A main dish will be provided – please bring a dish to share if you can! We’ll also provide hymnals but feel free to bring your own (and any instruments!) if you wish.
HYMN SING @ COMMUNITY CHURCH OF THE BRETHREN ON FEBRUARY 4 @ 2:00PM
We have been invited to join area Church of the Brethren congregations for a hymn sing at Community Church of the Brethren on Feb 4 and 2:00pm. If you wish, bring snacks to share at a fellowship time following the hymn sing. This church is located at 1600 N Severance Street in Hutchinson. FMC partners with Church of the Brethren on several annual events, and this offers another opportunity to strengthen between two like-minded congregations.
SUPER BOWL SUB FUNDRAISER – SIGN UP BY FEB 8 TO PICK UP ON FEB 11
Sign up will be available soon for your Super Bowl Subs prepared by our Senior Youth Group. Choose turkey or ham/salami ($10/sub). Every sub comes with a little baggie of veggies (but you provide your own condiments). Sign up by February 8 (on Jan 28 & Feb 4 after worship the youth to be in the foyer to take orders, or contact Jonathan Wenger or Tanya Martin Nisly). Pick up your sub(s) on Sunday February 11 after worship.
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…
SUNDAY MORNING DONATIONS FOR RENO COUNTY FOOD BANK:
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.
SUPPORT FOR LightHouse:
Thanks for your continued donations for the food pantry at LightHouse! When we have an updated list of needs, we’ll post it here!
OPPORTUNITY TO SERVE AT THE SOUP KITCHEN – SATURDAY JANUARY 27!
Check out the signup sheets for serving at the Soup Kitchen. New opportunities are available! Volunteers are needed for food preparation (2-3:30pm), meal delivery (4-5:30pm), and serving and clean up (4:45- 6:00pm). Food donations of applesauce and cookies for this month have been fulfilled. The signup sheets are across from the mailboxes. Many volunteers are needed!
KANSAS MENNONITE RELIEF SALE – April 12-13, 2024 announcements
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 Cloth Thousands in desperate living conditions. ALL donations are Tax Deductible. Call Jerry Toews for info: 620 367 8257. Help make a difference. -KMRSale Committee
CAMP MENNOSCAH announcements
Work on the Retreat Center HVAC Project is starting! Next Work Day on this project is January 27. The focus will be the start of “demolition.” Work will start at 9am and end at 5pm. Bring your own lunch and water bottle, please, and meet at the Retreat Center. Camp Mennoscah will provide tools needed. Space heaters will be used, but temperatures inside may be around 50 degrees. Please let us know you are coming so we can be prepared. Contact us at 620-297-3290, 316-293-7313 (text) or firstname.lastname@example.org. We are grateful for your generosity as a volunteer. Thank you for helping make the Retreat Center project a reality!…
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!
HESSTON COLLEGE announcements
January 27 – Community Day
Join Hesston College for Community Day on Saturday, January 27, at Yost Center. The event features free admission to the Lark men’s and women’s basketball games vs. Neosho County as well as free popcorn, photos with Clark the Lark, performances by the HC dance team and free haircuts from alum Christy (Berkey) ’03 Pickerill, CC’s Family Hair. The women’s game starts at noon and the men’s game at 3 p.m. The Hesston High School pep band and cheerleaders will help cheer the Larks.
January 30 – History of Prairie Fires
Join the Winter Lecture Series at Dyck Arboretum of the Plains and learn about the history of prairie fires. You will learn about how fire helped shape the Great Plains and the lives of its residents. The lecture begins at 7 p.m. and will be held virtually. Visit dyckarboretum.org/events to register. There is a $5 cost.
BETHEL COLLEGE announcements
Fri., Jan. 26 – First event in the Bethel College Faculty Lecture Series, “Walking the Talk: Listening in Our Disciplines,” at Kidron Bethel Village, 11 a.m., Kidron Hall. Dr. Rachel Epp Buller, Bethel professor of visual arts and design and series organizer, will introduce the series and speak on “Walking and Listening in/as Artistic Practice.”
Sat., Jan. 27 – Kauffman Museum annual Kansas Day event, “Kansas Critters,” noon-4 p.m., museum parking lot and grounds. Featuring food trucks, exhibits and activities indoors and out, and much more. For more information, see the Kauffman Museum Facebook page or kauffmanmuseum.org
Sat., Feb. 3 – Bethel College Faculty Recital: Dr. Christina Liu, piano, 2 p.m. [note time change], Administration Building chapel
Now in the Regier Gallery in Luyken Fine Arts Center at Bethel College – “Forest Listening,” a sound art installation by Liz K. Miller, through Feb. 9. Gallery hours are Mon.-Fri. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun. 2-4 p.m.
WESTERN DISTRICT CONFERENCE – OPEN HOUSE February 10
Western District Conference invites you to a come-and-go Open House on Saturday, February 10, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm at the WDC office, 2517 North Main Street, North Newton, KS. This is in addition to the WDC Library Open House and Book Sale already announced. Check out what’s new in the Resource Library, browse the used-book sale, enjoy refreshments, chat with staff, and celebrate WDC’s newly renovated office spaces!
BUHLER MENNONITE CHURCH ANNUAL CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP FUNDRAISER
Buhler Mennonite Church’s ANNUAL CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP SUPPER is just a few weeks away on Wednesday, February 14. While we will not have a dine-in experience in our church basement, we will be offering a carry-out featuring noodle soup, pie and bread. Orders will be accepted through Friday, February 2. Call or text 620-664-7699 to let us know how many orders you want. Pick up will be at the north entrance of the church (220 W Ave B, Buhler, KS) from 4:00 to 6:00pm on Wednesday, February 14. Enter from the south side parking lot on B Street. This is a free will offering with all proceeds going to OUTREACH MEALS.
HALSTEAD MENNONIE CHURCH ANNUAL VERENIKE SUPPER FUNDRAISER
February 17, 4:30-7:00pm. Located at 427 West 4th in Halstead. Menu is verenike, ham gravy, sausage, green beans, zwieback, pie and assorted relishes. Dine-in and carryout available (west side of church on Santa Fe). Proceeds go to USD 440 school lunches and Halstead community utility bill assistance.
HUTCHINSON COMMUNITY COLLEGE LIFELONG LEARNING
- Class title: The Grand Story of the Bible – Genesis to Revelation
- Instructor: Ted Weis
- Dates: February 29, March 7, March 14
- Time: 10:00am – 12:00pm
- Location: Peel Center – 1 East 9th Street (on Main and 9th)
- Registration: $45. Call 620-727-2791 or email email@example.com
MENNONITE CENTRAL COMMITTEE announcements
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
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 onesies and sleepers (6-12 month sizes); new bath towels (dark colored, light to medium weight); new hand towels (dark colored). Locally, MCC distributes prisoner care and returning citizen care kits, for those kits we currently need:men’s shirts (sizes XL, 2XL, 3XL — any color) and men’s underwear (sizes 2XL, 3XL — any color). 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 firstname.lastname@example.org or 316.283.2720. A full list of MCC kit contents can be found at mcc.org/kits.
SWAP . . . SHARING WITH APPALACHIAN PEOPLE
We are excited to announce SWAP is accepting applications for the upcoming year! Would you consider coming to Appalachia? Apply today to reserve your spot at www.swap.mcc.org.
A service and learning program of MCC Great Lakes, SWAP provides meaningful volunteer opportunities for schools, universities, churches, families, groups and individuals. Participants should be 15 years or older. You can, however, call the office to inquire about younger participants. SWAP experiences often run in the summer. Experiences can also be arranged during non-summer months and are great options for retirees!
MCC U.S. NATIONAL PEACE & JUSTICE MINISTRIES
Urge Congress To Pass The Clean Energy Minerals Reform Act
Background: Critical minerals are essential components of solar panels, wind turbines and electric batteries—all important in the transition to cleaner energy sources. The mining for these minerals, however, can have enormous negative effects: polluted air, water and soil; the exploitation of workers; and the desecration of sacred Indigenous sites. Mining on public lands in the U.S. is governed by the 1872 Mining Law, which fails to protect our public lands and the surrounding communities. More than a century of reckless mining has poisoned our air, waters, and lands—and has disproportionately impacted Indigenous communities.
Urge Congress to pass the Clean Energy Minerals Reform Act (H.R. 3495, S. 1742) to mandate strong environmental protections for water and land resources, and also protect tribal sacred sites that have been disproportionately impacted by mining operations. Other bills, like the Mining Regulatory Clarity Act (H.R. 2925, S. 1281), offer false solutions that would further weaken mining laws. Please encourage your members of Congress to support the Clean Energy Minerals Reform Act and oppose the Mining Regulatory Clarity Act.
Faith Reflection: We are entrusted with a ministry of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:19). We can be climate peacemakers if we approach changemaking with an attitude of love, humility and listening, restoring right relationships as we restore God’s Earth.
Action: Urge Congress to pass the Clean Energy Minerals Reform Act
Everence® JANUARY WORKSHOP: Social Security and retirement income
Everence® will hold an informative Social Security and retirement incomeworkshop on Thursday, January 25, starting at 6:30 p.m. Topics will include, Social Security strategies, including when to begin taking benefits, risks that can impact your retirement savings plus strategies to help your income last throughout retirement. There will also be plenty of time for questions. The in-person workshop will be at the Everence office: 3179 N. Main St. Suite 1B, North Newton, KS. Information will be presented by staff from the Everence offices in Central Kansas. To register contact Everence at 316-283-3800, 877-467-7294 or email@example.com.
MCC U.S. NATIONAL PEACE & JUSTICE MINISTRIES announces 2024 PEACE CAMPS
For young adult (ages 18-30), Peace Camps offer opportunities to learn and explore dynamics of social change; experience personal transformation; and apply Anabaptist, Biblical foundations of peace and justice to real world issues. MCC covers all costs of travel, lodging and meals beyond the $250 registration fee.
read more about each peace camp and when to register.
MENNONITE MISSION NETWORK SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES
A gap year with Service Adventure is a time to focus on faith, live in community, and engage in the work God is doing in cities across the country. Apply by January 31 for the broadest selection of placements and unit houses. Ages 17-20. https://www.mennonitemission.net/Serve/Service%20Adventure
A year (or two!) with MVS is a chance to grow somewhere new serving with local nonprofits, joining in fellowship at a host church and exploring what God is doing in other communities. Apply by January 31 for the broadest selection of placements and unit houses. Ages 20+ https://www.mennonitemission.net/Serve/Mennonite%20Voluntary%20Service
MENNONITE DISASTER SERVICE (MDS) ANNUAL MEETING CELEBRATION
February 23-24 in Fresno, California. The entire event is free (including meals) and open to all. Travel and accommodations are on your own. Attend in person or view the celebration online via YouTube/MDSmennonite or MDS.org. Click this link for details https://mds.org/annual-celebration/
FOOTSTEPS OF PAUL IN GREECE + 3-NIGHT CRUISE
Dates are May 27 – June 6, 2024. This trip will be led by Pastor Weldon Martens, Grace Hill Mennonite Church; Whitewater, KS. This is a 11-Day Tour & Cruise to Athens, Thessalonica, Philippi, Corinth, Crete, Patmos, Ephesus, Mykonos & Santorini. Cost: $3,219 + flights. Registration: Due by January 18, 2024. Contact Pastor Weldon Martens at: firstname.lastname@example.org / 402-202-9276. Complete tour information & registration at www.tourwithweldon.com
MENNONITE IMMIGRATION TO CENTRAL KANSAS 150th ANNIVERSARY . . . area events in 2024
Mennonite Heritage & Agricultural Museum – Goessel
You are invited to join us on January 28, 2024, at 2 pm at the Goessel Church, Goessel, Ks for the Annual Meeting of the Mennonite Heritage & Agricultural Museum and for the kickoff event celebrating the 150th Anniversary of the migration of the Mennonites to Kansas. After the annual meeting, Rod Ratzlaff, Przechowko historian, will present, “Origins of Alexanderwohl, Hoffnungsau, & Lone Tree: Legacy of the Old Flemish Mennonites of Przechowko.” How do these three Mennonite churches in south central Kansas fit in with a 16th century village in West Prussia (today’s Poland)? Come find out! After the program, faspa will be served. Come early to renew your MH&AM membership or join for the first time. 150th Anniversary merchandise will be available for sale before and after the meeting. (Cash or check only, we cannot accept credit cards.) This event will be live streamed from the Mennonite Heritage & Agricultural Museum’s Facebook page.
Hoffnungsau Mennonite Church, Inman, is celebrating 150 years August 31 – September 1, 2024. SAVE THE DATES! We are planning a Sunday School class reunion along with other activities. Share with your families and others who have Hoffnungsau connections. Watch Hoffnungsau’s Facebook page for church trivia and more details of our weekend celebration. If you’d like to be added to our email list for further details as they develop, please contact Barb at email@example.com