Skip to content
This week at FMC

THIS WEEK @ FMC – November 1-7, 2023

Table of Contents

November 4 (Saturday) Prayer-Rising for Oak Flat + FMC Church Work Day

This invitation comes to us from the Coalition to Dismantle the Doctrine of Discovery, who we hosted this past summer for their annual meeting.  I’ve been slow in getting this information out, and the event is now THIS SATURDAY! Even though we cannot be at Oak Flat, we are invited to spend time in prayer individually or in community.  

You can:

Sign up for the 24-hour prayer coverage 

Sign up for the soup and singing solidarity event: Join Repair Network Organizer Doe Hoyer for a 2-hour facilitated online event (at 5pm).  Participants will each prepare a cherished soup recipe from home, while singing and learning songs. Throughout the event, we will reflect on our relationship to the Earth, and pray together for healing, transformation, and forgiveness.

In addition … November 4 is also the day we’ve set as a work day at First Mennonite, and you are all invited.  This seems to me a good opportunity to be in prayer as we work to tend to what is sacred space and land for us.  Our work day begins at 8:00am.  Anyone is invited to join me in the sanctuary at 7:45am Saturday morning to take 15 minutes to intentionally pray alongside the Apache Stronghold, acknowledging the sacredness of Oak Flat and all Indigenous lands and asking for protection of these lands. We’ll also acknowledge the Indigenous peoples who lived on and loved this land before us.  And then, my hope is, we will continue to be in prayer internally as we work together to care for the piece of land, and building, we have been entrusted with. 

Pastor Tonya

SUNDAY MORNING Worship at 9:30am 

The link to join is on our website:  Join 5 minutes early for announcements.


1 Kings 18:[17- 19] 20-39; (Mark 9:2-4)

PRAYER OF THE DAY: God of Elijah, with great fire you made your presence known to the worshipers of Baal. Help us to resist the temptation to place our trust and faith in anything other than you. Receive our worship and strengthen our faith. Amen.

  • Preacher: Pastor Tonya Ramer Wenger
  • Worship Leader: Joel Iwashige
  • Scripture Reader: Diane Ziemer
  • Children’s Time: Bryan Kehr
  • Organist: Pauline Buller
  • Song Leader: TBD
  • Ushers: Don Wiens & Russell Goering
  • Nursery Attendant: Julie Esau
  • Sound Tech: Earl Ediger
  • 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. 


  • Nov 4 – Church Work Day 8am-1pm (or come when you can!!)
  • Nov 11 – Faith & Life Bookstore Pop-Up Shop – 10:00am-2:00pm, FMC’s Common Grounds room
  • Nov 12 – Mission Festival (Heidi Unruh, preacher) & Potluck Lunch following Sunday School
  • Nov 15 – We’ll Leave Our Lights On – gathering shelf-stable items for the Food Bank – 5:00-7:00pm
  • Nov 15 – Chancel Choir rehearsals begin – Wednesdays @ 5:30pm (no rehearsal November 22)
  • Dec 3 – FMC’s Annual Meeting, Youth Fundraiser Lunch and Silent Auction
  • Dec 3 – First Sunday of Advent: How Does A Weary World Rejoice? We acknowledge our weariness

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

The Tuesday Group meets again the second Tuesday in November (Nov 14) at 1:00pm. December’s date is TBD.

The Wednesday evening group meets next on Tuesday November 7 at 6:30pm, and the second Wednesday in December (Dec 13) as usual. 


Our Fall Worship services are guided by the Narrative Lectionary which is crafted to take us through the arc of the Biblical story, beginning in Genesis and ending with the early church at Pentecost.  In November we will explore the part of the story shaped by the prophets, exile and eventual return. 

We’re looking forward to using worship resources from A Sanctified Art for Advent/Christmas, focused on the theme: How Does a Weary World Rejoice?  The resources will again offer wonderful words for worship, visual art, a devotional booklet, and Advent calendars for adults and children.  After Epiphany/Star Words on January 7, we’ll begin a deep dive into the Gospel of Mark.

MISSION FESTIVAL (NOVEMBER 12, 2023): Presence as Mission

Heidi Unruh is our Mission Festival speaker this year, focusing on the theme “Presence as Mission.”  She will also lead the adults in a Sunday School session around the same theme.  Bring a dish to share for a potluck meal following Sunday School.   


  • 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, meeting in the basement fellowship hall and on Zoom. Between October 22 and Advent (Dec 3), this group will be watching and discussing recorded sermons from Mennonite World Conference (Indonesia 2022).  The group does not meet Oct 29 (church budget meeting) or November 12 (Mission Festival).

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

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 (No office hours October 25)


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 (No office hours October 25)
  • 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, but due to some scheduling issues, the next two dates are:

  • Wednesday November 1 (8am-5pm)
  • Wednesday November 29 (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 for this year is December 10-13 (back in office on December 14).

FALL 2023 WEDNESDAY NIGHTS AT FIRST (WNAF) – Focus on Humanity: Voices of Local Impact

Our Wednesday evening events continue this week – November 1. 

  • 5:30-6:20 Dinner
  • 6:30-7:30 Program (with separate activities for children in Common Grounds room)

This Wednesday we will hear from Hallie Cable with Care Portal and Margi Nisly with YouthThrive.  The rest of the schedule is as follows:

            November 8 – Interfaith Housing and Lighthouse

If you’d like to join via Zoom, please let Pastor Tonya know and she’ll send you the link.   


  • Silent Auction youth fundraiser opens 9:00am, pauses during worship, reopens at noon, ends 12:45pm
  • Senior Youth Fundraiser meal – 12:00 noon
  • Annual Congregational Meeting – 12:45pm (annual reports and agenda available on November 19)

Be thinking about what you might contribute to the silent auction and be part of the fun of bidding on items such as food, crafts, home décor, small furniture items or whatever might be donated.

HIGHLIGHS from CONGREGATIONAL BUDGET MEETING which was held Sunday, October 29

  • Approval of minutes from congregational meetings December 4, 2022 and June 4, 2023.
  • Review of Memo of Understanding for Minister of Community Outreach – Pastor Jim
  • Presentation of proposed 2023-2024 budget
  • Building maintenance updates
  • Information regarding possible installation of solar panels on the church roof. More information will be coming in advance of the annual meeting (December 3), when a proposal will be considered.

FMC CHURCH WORKDAY . . . Saturday, November 4, 8am-1pm

The Faithful Stewardship Coordination Team is planning for a workday to tend to cleaning/maintenance projects around the church building. Work will include these outdoor tasks (weather permitting): trimming shrubs and removing bushes, cleaning entrance areas and the columbarium area; and these indoor tasks: cleaning/vacuuming corners and crannies, spot cleaning carpets, kitchen cleaning projects, and cleaning pews and pew cushions. Please bring work gloves, trimming tools, cleaning cloths (incl. microfiber cloths and regular towels), brooms, vacuum with upholstery attachment, etc. – items you would need for the kind of tasks you would like to help with. We’ll put on the coffee and iced tea and have some food for break.


This month we will expand our Craft Night to include wrapping MCC Infant Care Bundles in preparation for our Christmas giving initiative. Please join us in the fellowship hall on Monday, November 13, 6:30-8:00pm – we welcome lots of helpers of all ages. You are also invited to come for your usual craft project.

Any questions . . . contact Cheryl Warkentin or Diane Ziemer. Deanna Mace is coordinating the Infant Care Bundles project.


All singers are invited to join the choir for the advent season. Rehearsals will be held on four Wednesdays at 5:30pm in the choir loft. (No rehearsal on November 22.) The Lessons and Carols service is planned for December 17. Talk to Calvin Buller if you have questions.

FAITH & LIFE BOOKSTORE POP-UP SHOP . . . Saturday, November 11

Faith & Life Bookstore in Newton brings the store to us on November 11, 10:00am-2:00pm! This is a great opportunity to purchase books, gifts, Bible study resources and so much more. Think Christmas . . . or birthdays . . . or remembering a friend. If there are specific items you would like to purchase, call the store (316-283-2210) in advance to let them know what you are looking for. Our purchases on this date benefit our church library, giving us credit to purchase books for our library. Invite your friends and neighbors to join you on this unique shopping experience in the Common Grounds room.


Check with Carol Moore if you would like more information on when and how to use it.

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 now 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…


November: Canned Fruit

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.


As we are posting, excitement is building for “Donuts on the Lawn.” Perhaps you’d still like to come and help. Please join us!

WE’LL LEAVE OUR LIGHTS ON . . . 6th annual drive for Reno County Food Bank

Ending hunger in Reno County isn’t a job for one church or one organization. It takes a group, a group of friends who believe that together we make a difference. This is the sixth year for our countywide Thanksgiving food drive, We’ll Leave Our Lights On. This year 19 area churches are collecting food for the Reno County Food Bank and church pantries. On Wednesday, November 15, from 5-7 churches will shine their lights while collecting donations of non-perishable foods. The Reno County Food Bank suggests these items: pasta, peanut butter, mac & cheese, canned meats, fruits, vegetables, and soups.


Tabor Mennonite Church (891 Chisholm Trail Rd, Newton, KS). Come bring a friend and enjoy an evening of food and fellowship.


Our fund that pays for the meal we serve every other month at the Soup Kitchen has been depleted.  If you’d like to support this ministry financially, please make donations to First Mennonite with “Soup Kitchen” in the memo line.

Thanks for your continued donations for the food pantry at LightHouse!  We’re working on getting an updated list of needs to share here.


Donations of Chapstick and deodorant are always needed.  You can place these and other toiletries, along with any teenage appropriate clothing/shoes (a recent specific request was hoodies) in the basket at church or drop off directly at Trinity United Methodist Church.  Financial donations for ongoing program costs are also invited throughout the year.

Salthawk Community Support staff are committed to assisting students through individual support, mentorships, special programs, and basic needs. This support helps students rise above the daily struggles so they can focus on their education. Your support is greatly appreciated!


Right now we are anticipating welcoming a family at the end of November! We have been able to keep the house that we had furnished and stocked.  While we will need make some adjustments to bedding due to a different family constellation (a family of 5, with older children) and we’ll need to restock groceries, we have much of what we need.  Thank you so much for your generosity!  As always, we’ll keep you updated as we are able.


If you would be willing to provide one or more meals in 2024 for the Circles of Hope meetings, please contact Pastor Tonya for more information.  Other ways to give to Circles of Hope include: serving as an Ally, sponsoring one of the members through the 12 week training class, giving cash or an in-kind donation of table service for the meals. The purpose of Circles of Hope is to work every day to end poverty in our community. 

CAMP MENNOSCAH needs volunteers for general maintenance

Volunteers are needed immediately to work (M-F) alongside the facilities director on general maintenance tasks.  Working on these regular maintenance tasks will allow more time for planning and preparation for the Retreat Center HVAC project.  The project is running behind and we need to make up time!  Call or text Jordan at 316-613-1848.  Calls/texts will be answered between 8am – 5pm.  Volunteer hours will also be 8am-5pm or a portion of that time.  Please bring a water bottle and your lunch.  

BETHEL COLLEGE announcements

Sun., Nov. 5 – Bethel Sings, a concert featuring all Bethel College vocal groups, Henry Waters, director, 4 p.m.Bethel College Mennonite Church (2600 College Ave., North Newton 67117)

Mon., Nov. 6 – Julia Spicher Kasdorf: “Thinking of Certain Mennonite Women: Reading from her poems and those of others, with discussion,” 7 p.m.Administration Building chapel at Bethel College. Sponsored by the Bethel College Women’s Association Carolyn Schultz Lecture Endowment. Kasdorf will also speak in convocation Mon., Nov. 6, 11 a.m., Krehbiel Auditorium in Luyken Fine Arts Center, on “Documentary Poetry,” and lead a reading and open mic at 1887 Café, Tues., Nov. 7, at 7:30 p.m.

Sat., Nov. 11 – Junior recital by Bethel College student Josué Coy Dick, violin, 7 p.m.Administration Building chapel

Sun., Nov. 12 – KIPCOR Film Series presents Eroding History, 2 p.m.Krehbiel Auditorium in Luyken Fine Arts Center. Audience talkback follows the screening; a freewill offering will be taken to support KIPCOR and the film series.

HELP PACKAGE 50,000 MEALS . . . Buhler Mennonite Church and IdeaTek

WHAT: We need your help!  

On Saturday, November 18, 2023 we (Buhler Mennonite Church & IdeaTek) need your help to package 50,000 meals. Our plan is to keep the meals local– providing food for our local neighbors. What a great way to give of your time during the Thanksgiving season to help those who struggle to put food on the table. There is a job for all ages 7 to 147 years of age. You can work one shift or both shifts. Job orientation is provided.

WHEN: Saturday, November 18, 2023.  

        1st Shift (Arrive 8:45 for the 9 – 11:00am).

        2nd Shift (Arrive 10:45 for 11:00am-1pm).  Or do both!

WHERE: Sand Hills Event Center: 4601 N. Plum, Hutchinson, KS  67502

Please sign-up here:

CONTACT US: Phone: 620.543.2733. Email:


Everence® to hold Nov. 6 Medicaid and long-term care workshop 

Everence will hold an informative Medicaid and long-term care workshop on Monday, Nov. 6, starting at 6:30 p.m. Topics will include, what benefits are provided by Medicaid and who is eligible, how the Division of Assets process works, when long-term care insurance is a good fit, and how long-term care insurance can protect your heirs. There will also be time for your questions. The in-person workshop will take place at the Everence office: 3179 N. Main St. Suite 1B, North Newton, KS. Information will be presented by guest speaker, Cynthia A. Wiens, attorney from Adrian & Pankratz, P.A. To register contact Everence at 316-283-3800, 877-467-7294 or


The October edition of On the Level is now available from Mennonite Disaster Service. In our current issue: Kevin King shares the health benefits of being a volunteer; an old grocery store is transformed near Red Lake, Minnesota; and if you enjoy quilting, knitting or crocheting you’ll want to learn more about the MDS Housewarmer Project. Read more at this link:

Confronting Crime: Open Discussions on Public Safety and Capital Punishment

Kansas Coalition Against the Death Penalty annual meeting and abolition conference

Location: FireWorx, 500 S. Topeka St, Wichita, KS.

Date: November 11th, 2023.  Time 1 to 3 p.m.


  • Demetrius Minor of Conservatives Concerned About the Death Penalty
  • Dalton Glasscock, former Chair Sedgwick County Republican Party and current Wichita Council Member Candidate.
  • Michael Birzer, Professor and Graduate Coordinator in the School of Criminal Justice at WSU.

This is a great opportunity to hear diverse voices speak on the issue of the death penalty and public safety.  This event is open to KCADP members and the general public.

To preregister email your name and contact information to  Same day registration available at 12:30 p.m.

For further information contact KCADP via or call 785-235-2237.

This is a World Vision event. Volunteers are needed to pass out child sponsorship packets

Here is the Event Page for more information:

Saturday, November 11 · 5pm CST

Location: 365 Complex, 453 KS-61 Inman, KS 67546