Skip to content
This week at FMC

THIS WEEK @ FMC – November 22, 2023

Table of Contents

New every morning is your love, O Lord!

Fresh your compassion daily dawns.

New every morning is your mercy and grace;

you are faithful

you are strong.

Lord, we thank you for this day!   (text of a song written by Rory Noland)

Thanksgiving is the theme of this week.  While I value the invitation of this holiday to cultivate gratitude, it is also a reminder of the hard work still ahead to repair right relationships with the Indigenous People of this country who still suffer harm because of colonization.

I’m grateful for the work of the Coalition to Dismantle the Doctrine of Discovery and the opportunity we had this summer to learn more and build some relationships.  You can read more about ways to get involved, including offering financial donations, here:  Thanksgiving feels like a really good time to get involved, or at least make a donation to support these important efforts to not only educate but make real progress toward repair and restoration.

Pastor Tonya


SUNDAY MORNING Worship at 9:30am 

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


PRAYER OF THE DAY: God of faithfulness, your servant Josiah restored your holy words to a people longing for your guidance. Help us learn your Scriptures so that we might carry your words in our hearts, in our words and in our actions. Amen.

  • Preacher: Pastor Jim Unruh
  • Worship Leader & Scripture Reader: Calvin Buller
  • Children’s Time: Hilda Iwashige
  • Organist: Pauline Buller
  • Song Leader: TBD
  • Ushers: Russ Wedel & Diane Ziemer
  • Nursery Attendant: Joel & Hilda Iwashige
  • Sound Tech: Murray Reimer
  • Live Stream Tech: Jay Gehring


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. 

Our offering on November 12 – Mission Sunday – was designated for LightHouse expenses related to mentoring (mentor training, life skill learning experiences, shared activities, etc.). If you would like to support LightHouse in this way, mark your contribution for LightHouse Mentoring.

You can also still make donations for MCC (Mennonite Central Committee)’s Gaza response, which the youth hosted a fundraiser lunch for this past Sunday.  Make your checks out to Mennonite Central Committee with “Gaza” in the memo line.


  • Nov 25 – Eunice Esau celebration of life – 11:00am
  • Nov 30 – Pastor Congregation Relations Committee 3:30pm
  • Dec 3 – FMC’s Annual Meeting (12:45pm), Youth Fundraiser Lunch (Noon) and Silent Auction (9:00-9:30am;
  • 10:30-11:00am; 12:00-12:45pm)
  • Dec 3 – First Sunday of Advent: How Does A Weary World Rejoice? We acknowledge our weariness Worship includes decorating the Christmas Tree!!
  • Dec 17 – Eldon and Jane Wagler sharing about their work with MCC during Sunday School

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 (tentatively!) on Tuesday December 19 at 11:00am
  • The Wednesday evening group meets next at 6:30pm on the second Wednesday in December (Dec 13).

ADVENT 2023: How Does a Weary World Rejoice?

Our 2023 Advent series, created by A Sanctified Art, was created “to acknowledge the weariness of our world while also seeking real and daily moments of joy. We need to remember that all of life can be a prayer.”  And, thus, the theme: “How Does a Weary World Rejoice?”which does indeed seem very relevant for where we find ourselves in the world today. Each week, an answer inspired by scripture is offered in response to this tender question. 

Various resources and opportunities are available for you to deepen your Advent Journey, including:

  • Advent Devotional booklet with art work, poetry, prayers, and questions for reflection. This is available as a full color paper copy and also electronically.
  • Adult/Youth Advent Calendar available as a large paper calendar, small cards, and electronically
  • Advent Calendar for Children
  • December 21:  Longest Night Service(6pm), Soup Supper(6:45pm) and Christmas Caroling(7:30ish)
  • Christmas Eve Service on Sunday December 24 (in addition to regular Sunday morning worship)
  • December 31 during Sunday School:  Journaling Prayer Exercise “At the Crossroads” of 2023 and 2024:  (no regular Sunday School; childcare provided)


Handed out on Epiphany, the invitation of “Star Words” is to allow a word, randomly chosen, to speak to you throughout the year. We accept these words as a gift given, with the potential to reveal something true about us and God that we hadn’t realized before. If you participated in 2023, I invite you to return again to your word.  Maybe it’s been very present in your journey through 2023, or maybe it fell off your radar.  Either way, take the word out and consider it afresh now, here in the middle of November. I would love to share some of your reflections in the Epiphany 2024 Worship Service (Jan 7) when we’ll draw new words for a new year.  Please send your brief responses by Wednesday January 3!


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). 

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

December 17 – Gathering to hear stories from Eldon and Jane Wagler about their work as Country Representatives in Malawi and Zambia through Mennonite Central Committee. (Fellowship Hall, basement)

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
  • 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 date is: 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).


Eunice Esau’s celebration of life will be held at First Mennonite on Saturday November 25 at 11:00am. We will also livestream the service; the link will be on the home page of our website.  As we hold our grief, we also look forward to celebrating Eunice’s life together with friends and family. Inurnment (with just family) at the FMC Columbarium will take place before the service, and lunch for everyone will follow the service.

We are looking for a few more people to help in the kitchen with lunch and clean up.  Please let Joretta Martens, Mary Wade, or Hilda Iwashige know if you can help.


We want to thank you for your thoughtfulness in remembering us at Eldon’s passing. May God keep each of us in his care.  – Herb and Joleen Pauls


Recordings of the presentations are available (except for the first session).


The PCRC meets on November 30 at 3:30pm. If you have any sort of feedback about the relationship between the pastors and FMC congregation, please contact one of the following people: Jolene Yoder, Peggy Stucky, Kevin Martin Nisly.


Silent Auction youth fundraiser will be open:

  •  9:00-9:30am (pauses during worship)
  •  After worship till 11:00am (pauses during Sunday School)
  •  Noon-12:45pm (when the auction ends!)

Senior Youth Fundraiser meal – 12:00 noon

Annual Congregational Meeting – 12:45pm (annual reports and agenda available electronically and hard copy at the church) 


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.  Please bring your items by 8:45am on Sunday December 3.  Before Nov 25, you can drop off items to be stored in the Associate Pastor office; after Nov 25 please bring your items directly to the church basement.

CHOIR REHEARSALS WEDNESDAY @ 5:30pm (no rehearsal November 22)

All singers are invited to join the choir for the advent season. Rehearsals are on Wednesdays at 5:30pm in the choir loft. (No rehearsal on November 22.) The Lessons and Carols service is planned for December 17.


You are invited to the Wenger’s for a Christmas Singing Group on Friday December 8.  Potluck (bring something to share – at least one main dish will be provided) at 6:00pm and singing beginning around 7:00pm.  We’ll sing from Voices Together and possibly other hymnals.  Bring your own or use the hymnals provided.   Instruments are also welcome! 

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 (December: Pasta)

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. 


*Salthawk Community Support Santa Sacks (DEC 1 DEADLINE!!): The goal is to provide 200 sacks at Hutchinson High School and 30 at HMS8. These ‘sacks’ will include ear buds, warm blankets and gloves, gift certificates, and favorite snacks.  The estimated value per sack will be $100.  Checks can be directed to Salthawk Community Support and mailed to 1602 North Main Street Hutchinson KS 67501. Or, you can donate safely online at the giving page of or use Trinity’s Venmo account at Trinity UMC-Hutch. All donations are fully tax deductible.

*Hat & Mitten Tree will be set up at church to receive new hats and gloves for distribution at the Salvation Army.

*MCC (Mennonite Central Committee) Baby Bundles: 65 bundles have been assembled! A donation of $25 covers the cost of one kit. Make your donations to First Mennonite with “Baby Bundles” in the memo line.  These kits will be dedicated on Christmas Eve and then delivered to MCC in Newton to be sent around the world. 

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

Thanks for your generous donations to the Food Bank!!!                                                                                                                                   


Our fund that pays for the meal we serve every other month at the Soup Kitchen is in much better shape, but we still would welcome financial donations to be in even better shape!! Make donations to First Mennonite with “Soup Kitchen” in the memo line. 


Volunteers are still needed for food preparation (2-3:30pm), meal delivery (4-5:30pm), and serving and clean up (4:45-6:00pm). One package of sandwich cookies is still needed. Volunteers are still needed for food preparation, serving and delivery routes. To volunteer, email the church office ( or call Jean directly at 620-663-1240. With this being a busy week, we are struggling to find enough volunteers – please consider whether you could help this time around!!  Thank you!

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


A specific need right now is women’s deodorant!


Mennonite Friendship Communities is hosting a Christmas Bazaar from 9-noon on Saturday, December 2.  Come enjoy a morning of shopping for Christmas gifts and fellowship.  We will have everything from items to eat, to cards and crafts to tumblers and mugs.  The To-Gather Shoppe will also be open during this time.  For questions or to have a table at the event, please contact Susan Nisly at


The arrival of the family First Mennonite’s team will be supporting is just around the corner! Thanks for all the support and prayers.


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 announcements

Volunteers are needed immediately to work (M-F) alongside the facilities director. Helping on 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.  

Camp Mennonscah M&M Project Update:  End of Year Giving! Please consider giving to Camp Mennoscah and/or the M&M Project on Giving Tuesday – this year on November 28 – or as part of your end-of-the-year giving. It’s not that we aren’t thankful for all you’ve done – but there is a lot to be done at  Camp, and we already know that God has touched your hearts and called many to be part of Camp’s mission. Let’s not just finish the M&M Project strong – let’s finish the year strong! Thank you for being a part of Camp Mennoscah! 75 years – There is still so much ahead!

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! 


Get busy giving on Giving Tuesday at an Evening of Service at MCC! Nov. 28 from 6:30-8 p.m. at MCC in North Newton, KS. Bring new dark colored hand towels with you to pack hygiene kits (the more towels you bring, the more kits we can pack!). MCC partner Offender Victim Ministries will be here with supplies to write holiday greetings to prisoners, we’ll have comforters to tie and delicious snacks to enjoy. What a great way to give on Giving Tuesday!

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 or 316.283.2720. A full list of MCC kit contents can be found at

Driving through Kansas on your way south this winter? Are you heading to South Texas? If so, MCC Central States in North Newton, KS is looking for your help! We need to transport 25 boxes of kits to a partner in McAllen, TX. Please contact Kate Mast at with any questions or interest. Thanks!

BETHEL COLLEGE announcements

All bakers and craft makers are invited to make items for 5 Places of Christmas on Saturday, December 2, at Goerz House, Bethel College. Bethel College Women’s Association (BCWA) will again be selling baked goods, candy, craft items and poinsettias.  Your home-baked cookies, zwiebach, cinnamon rolls, peppernuts and poppyseed rolls are always great sellers. This year we are especially asking for homemade candies such as peanut clusters, peanut butter balls, peanut brittle or fudge. Please bring your items to Goerz House on Friday, December 1, from 1:00-4:00 pm or on Saturday from 9:00-10:00 am. This event is a fundraiser for the many ways BCWA supports students at Bethel College. Thank you for your support of Bethel College.


  • Monday, November 27  –  Noon to 6:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, November 28  –  11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, November 29  –  7 a.m. to 1 p.m.

First Presbyterian Church

201 E Sherman

Hutchinson, KS 67501

Chili served daily and cinnamon rolls on Wednesday morning!

Schedule an appointment: 1-800-RED CROSS |

Sponsor Code: Hutchinson