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This week at FMC

THIS WEEK @ FMC – October 18-24, 2023

Table of Contents

Hear again, to be both strengthened and challenged, by the Benediction Joel Iwashige sent us with this past Sunday (written by Neil and Gerlinde Kennedy-Jones and Andrew M. Seddon, found in the Northumbria Community Celtic Daily Prayer Book 2.):

May you always be

            a strong arm to the weak;

And may you always be

            a comfort to the crying;

            a smile to the lonely

            a blessing to the grieving;

And may you always be

            a haven for the anxious.

May your life to full of Jesus

            and his love;

May you be God-driven by the

            Father and the Spirit;

And may you be His hands

And smile

And be His arms of comfort

And may you always be

His blessing to the world.


SUNDAY MORNING Worship at 9:30am 

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


On Wednesday 9/27/2023 the church had an inspection with the Hutchinson Fire Inspector Jerry Dowling. Results of this inspection included the requirement that we no longer use door chocks (stoppers) with fire rated doors. These doors include: the library door, bathroom doors, Common Grounds doors, nursery door, basement adult classroom doors, and all other doors rated as “Fire Doors”.  For any questions or clarifications please contact the Faithful Stewardship Coordination Team – Allen Yoder, Dohn Fast or Jay Gehring.


2 Samuel 5:1-5; 6:1-5; Psalm 150; (Mark 11:8-10)

PRAYER OF THE DAY: Holy One of Israel, King David worked hard to return the Ark of the Covenant to Israel so that the people could honor you in your house of worship. Receive our praise in this house of worship, as we rejoice in your presence. Amen.

  • Preacher: Pastor Tonya Ramer Wenger
  • Worship Leader: Maggie Pounds
  • Scripture Reader: Russell Goering
  • Children’s Time: Diane Ziemer
  • Pianists: Shelley Kauffman
  • Song Leader: TBD
  • Ushers: Glenda & Rick Hooper
  • Nursery Attendant: Stephanie Gehring
  • 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. 


  • Oct 18 – WNAF (Wednesday Night @ First) – see details in STRENGTHENING section below
  • Oct 29 – FMC’s Budget Meeting (beginning 10:55am in the fellowship hall)
  • Oct 31 – Donuts on the Lawn
  • 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

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 will be guided by the Narrative Lectionary.  Between now and the end of November, we’ll move through the stories of Israel’s early history, the exodus, the kings, prophets, exile and return.  After Advent/Christmas, we’ll take a deep dive into the Gospel of Mark.


Our own Heidi Unruh is our Mission Festival speaker this year! Mark your calendars and plan to attend for worship, Sunday School, and a potluck lunch together. 


  • 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) or MennoCon23.  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)
  • 4th Wednesdays** (8-5pm) set aside as “Day Apart with God” for silence, reading, prayer &             journaling – will NOT be checking email or responding to texts/calls (except for emergencies) **NEXT “Day Apart” is Wednesday October 25.

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 – October 18. 

  • 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 two speakers: Annette Willson from Emanuel Lutheran Church and Marrietta King from Hands of Christ and The Village.  The rest of the schedule is as follows:

  • October 25 (still being confirmed)
  • November 1 – Hallie Cable with Care Portal and Margi Nisly with YouthThrive
  • 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.   

CONGREGATIONAL BUDGET MEETING . . . Sunday, October 29 at 10:55am – fellowship hall

An email sent to the FMC list on October 12 includes attachments with the proposed 2023-24 budget and our treasurer’s notes. Copies of these documents are available in the foyer.

The budget meeting on October 29 will include information about the following:

  • Financial reports of the 2022-2023 fiscal year
  • Presentation of and vote on the proposed budget for the 2023-2024 fiscal year
  • Brief presentation describing how our budget supports FMC’s four priorities of DEEPENING, STENGTHENING, STRETCHING and STEWARDING
  • Update from the Faithful Stewardship Coordination Team; presentation re: solar panels

All are invited to move to the fellowship hall immediately following the worship service. Beverages and snacks will be available in the fellowship hall. The meeting will begin promptly at 10:55 and is expected to adjourn by 12 noon or shortly after. All FMC attendees are encouraged to attend and participate in the discussion. FMC’s bylaws require that only members and associate members may vote. Your participation is an important way to learn about and share in decisions about FMC’s vision and mission. Thank you!

ANNUAL CONGREGATIONAL MEETING . . . Sunday, December 3 (details will be coming)

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.


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.


An AED unit has been installed in the foyer. AED stands for Automated External Defibrillator. In the event of sudden cardiac arrest, an AED analyzes the victim’s heart rhythm and tells a first aid provider whether to deliver a shock to the heart. This shock, called defibrillation, may help the heart reestablish an effective rhythm. Studies have shown that early defibrillation increases a victim’s chances for survival. You may want to take a few minutes this week to learn about the function of the AED and consider how your ability to use an AED could save someone’s life. If you have questions about the AED, please talk with Carol Moore.

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…


October: Canned Soup (especially tomato & cream of mushroom); (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.

MCC MEAT CANNER . . . October 30-31 in N. Newton

The Mennonite Central Committee Meat Canner will be at the Central States MCC office and is inviting volunteers from FMC to work on October 30-31. Call the church office if you would like to help. Contributions are also invited to cover the cost of the meat. Designate your contribution for “MCC Meat Canner” and donate online or by check by October 25.


Come join the fun and find out why we’re known to some as “the donut church!”  Help is needed beginning at 4:00pm that afternoon and then throughout the evening (till about 8:00pm) to assist with: setting up tables and skillets outside, rolling and cutting donuts, taking donuts outside to be fried, frying and serving donuts to the 100’s of trick-or-treaters who come to our neighborhood, and of course, clean up.  Many hands are needed to make this happen! Talk to Jonathan Wenger with questions, or to let him know you plan to help.

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.


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!


We continue to wait to be paired with another family resettling in the United States. Stay tuned!!


Sun., Oct. 29 & Mon., Oct. 30 – Annual Menno Simons Lectures, “The Mennonites in Revolutionary Ukraine,” with Dr. Aileen Friesen, professor of Mennonite studies at the University of Winnipeg, 7 p.m. Sunday, 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. MondayKrehbiel Auditorium in Luyken Fine Arts Center at Bethel College. Lecture 1: “Violence Among Neighbors: Revolution and Tragedy in Southern Ukraine”; Lecture 2: “Beyond the Red Gate: Mennonites and Emigration from Soviet Ukraine”; Lecture 3: “In Love, We Remain: Family and Loss under Stalin.”


Hoffnungsau Mennonite Church, 43 13th Avenue, Inman, will hold its annual Sausage Mission Supper on Saturday, October 21, 5:00 – 6:30.  This will be a curbside pick up meal featuring our traditional menu of German sausage, mashed potatoes with gravy, creamed peas, zwiebach, applesauce and pie.  This year we will have picnic tables out for anyone wanting to stay and eat their meal!  Cost will be a free will offering with all proceeds going to support Camp Mennoscah M & M project.  Call or text Barb (620-543-6863) or Eric (620-899-6972) to order meals.  

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: