Skip to content
This week at FMC

THIS WEEK @ FMC – September 14, 2022

Table of Contents

“But God …”  As I mentioned in my sermon this past Sunday, these two little words always catch my attention in scripture.  They signal God taking initiative, doing something far beyond any human capacity or attempts to control, manipulate, win or prove.

We read it in Genesis 8:1 after reading of a flood covering the earth for 150 days: But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and all the domestic animals that were with him in the ark.”

And, we read it again in Ephesians 2.  I quoted just a brief excerpt from Ephesians 2:4 on Sunday, and want to offer here the entirety of Ephesians 2:1-10 because its such good news of who God is, who we are, and what our purpose is in the world (which in many ways parallels the questions asked and answered in Genesis 1-11):

You were dead through the trespasses and sins 2in which you once lived, following the course of this world, following the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work among those who are disobedient. 3All of us once lived among them in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of flesh and senses, and we were by nature children of wrath, like everyone else. 4But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us 5even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— 6and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7so that in the ages to come he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness towards us in Christ Jesus. 8For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God— 9not the result of works, so that no one may boast. 10For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life.  (Ephesians 2:1-10 NRSV)

I love the New Jerusalem Bible’s translation of the beginning of that last verse… “For we are God’s work of art…” which, as I think about it, again takes us back to our wildly creative God at work in Genesis 1.  It appears Paul is pushing a sort of ‘re-set’ button on the implications of our origin in God, creator of the world and now, too, of the gifts of Christ Jesus breathing new life into a people once dead. 

In Ephesians 5:1-2 Paul offers these words of guidance, pointing us toward the kind of good gifts God has prepared for us to be and to do as our way of life:   Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children, and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us… (Ephesians 5:1-2 NIV)

May it be so for each of us, and for First Mennonite Church in Hutchinson KS!!

    Pastor Tonya

SUNDAY MORNING Worship at 9:30am 

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

COVID-19 safety suggestions for ourselves and others

CMT affirms these recommendations offered by the CDC:  Stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines. Get tested if you have symptoms. Wear a mask if you have symptoms, a positive test, or exposure to someone with COVID-19. Wear a mask on public transportation. You may choose to wear a mask at any time as an additional precaution to protect yourself and others. If you are at high risk for severe illness, consider wearing a mask indoors in public and taking additional precautions.

FELLOWSHIP TIME with drinks following the worship service each Sunday

This Sunday, enjoy drinks and cookies during our fellowship time following the worship service, and then make your way directly to the fellowship hall for a time to hear from Eldon and Jane Wagler about their work with Mennonite Central Committee.

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 18:  Mission & Peace Sunday – Mennonite Central Committee

(Amos 5:21-24, Matthew 5:3-12, Philippians 1:1-9)

  • Preacher: Eldon Wagler
  • Worship Leader: Carol Moore
  • Children’s Time: Pastor Tonya
  • Scripture Readers:  Pastor Tonya, Eldon Wagler
  • Organist: Pauline Buller
  • Ushers: Don Wiens & Russell Goering
  • Nursery Attendant: Diane Ziemer
  • Sound Tech: Earl Ediger & Allen Yoder
  • Live Stream Tech: Jay Gehring


We will be taking an offering this coming Sunday, Sept 18, to support the work of Mennonite Central Committee (MCC).  All offerings will go to MCC unless otherwise designated. 


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 (beginning around 9:25) and after the worship service.  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 plate is placed at the back of the sanctuary for your Sunday morning donations.  You are also welcome to send a check to 52 Rambler Rd Hutchinson KS 67502. 


  • September 13 – Congregational Ministry Team – 7:00pm
  • September 18 – Guess Who’s Coming to the Yard?  5:30pm (for those signed up)
  • September 18 – MISSION & PEACE SUNDAY with Eldon & Jane Wagler
  • September 24 – FMC serves at the Soup Ministry (sign up to help on the “Sign Up” board)
  • September 25 – M&Ms 11:00am
  • September 25 – CROP HUNGER WALK (Reno County)


As we prepare for our church’s 100-year celebration (Oct 22-23), we are wanting to set up a display of FMC Memorabilia. Please check your closets, bookshelves, filing cabinets, drawers, attics, etc. for items that highlight life at FMC over the years! Treasures may include (but are not limited to): caps, t-shirts, hymnals, pictorial directories, wedding attire (if you were married at FMC), bulletins, Sunday school materials, etc. We plan to have these items on display throughout the celebration weekend. Please contact Marlene Thode or Jean Gaeddert if you have items available for this Memory Museum display. Thank you. 

FMC CENTENNIAL . . . LightHouse Service Day and Giving Opportunities

To date, the total raised for the LightHouse project is $26,875, which exceeds the goal we set of raising $22,000! Thank you for your tremendous generosity!  The $22,000 will be used for construction costs and furnishings for the apartments. But we are not finished! More dollars are needed for ongoing maintenance needs, so your donations are still very much appreciated from now until October and beyond.  As contractors complete their work, we anticipate inviting volunteers for painting, trim work, cabinet installation, floor work, etc.  Interfaith’s goal is to have the building finished by sometime this winter.


OCT 5  Dale Schrag: Anabaptist Streams Converging in Central KS

  • 5:30-6:15pm Dinner
  • 6:20-7:20pm Program

OCT 9 (Sunday) LeRoy Esau and John Esau: Hymn Sing-Along

  • 3:30pm Sing-Along in the sanctuary
  • Refreshments following

OCT 12  June Galle Krehbiel, Bonnie Swenson & Delon Martens, reflecting on the making of our 100th anniversary history book: Arms Wide Open

  • 5:30-6:15pm Dinner
  • 6:20-7:20pm Program
  • 7:30-8:39pm Choir Rehearsal (for Oct 23 Centennial Worship Service)

OCT 19  In-person conversation with former FMC Pastors: Marlin & Betta Kym, Debbie Schmidt, LaVerle Schrag, Miles Reimer, Nathan Koontz

  • 5:30-6:15pm Dinner
  • 6:20-7:20pm Program
  • 7:30-8:39pm Choir Rehearsal (for Oct 23 Centennial Worship Service)



Questions? Email or call the church office 620-662-9385


2:00-3:30  Open House at LightHouse (1005 N Washington Hutchinson KS)

2:30 Dedication & Blessing at LightHouse:  In honor of our 100th anniversary, we have raised over

$26,000 (and counting) to support the construction and ministry of LightHouse. LightHouse is a house being renovated into 8 one bedroom apartments, intended to address the growing need for transitional housing for youth 18-21 years old in our community.

3:00-5:00pm Cookies/Refreshments and Activities for All Ages at First Mennonite (52 Rambler Rd)

Outside: games and activities for the young and young at heart

Inside: Memorabilia Museum of historical items to peruse; purchase your copy of the new 100th anniversary history book; sit and visit with old and new friends; and more!

5:30pm Borscht Supper begins in the basement fellowship hall (RSVP by Oct 1)


8:30am Choir Rehearsal in the Sanctuary

9:30am WORSHIP Arms Wide Open – Set Free to Serve & Love One Another (Gal 5:13-14)

                   Former and present pastors will share a scripture and prayer of blessing for First Mennonite

                 Centennial Choir sings

11:00am Fellowship & Transition to Potluck Lunch in the basement fellowship hall

11:30am Potluck Lunch begins  (RSVP by Oct 1)

                  Meat provided; local participants, please bring large side dishes and desserts to share

REMINDER:  If you are last one out of the church building, be SURE the doors lock behind you when you leave.  Go out, watch the doors latch, give both door handles a tug, and make sure they are locked!  Thank you.

DEEPENING in Christ…


September 18 – MISSION & PEACE SUNDAY with Eldon & Jane Wagler (Mennonite Central

Committee).  Eldon and Jane will share in worship and Sunday School.  This is in place of our usual November “Mission Fest.”   Refreshments will be served during fellowship time. A Zoom link to join the Sunday School hour will be sent in Pastor Tonya’s Friday email.

September 25: Re-Member: ABRAHAM FORGETS (Genesis 12:1-17)

October 2: Re-Member: A MEMORABLE DAY AT THE BEACH (Exodus 14:5-7, 10-14, 21-29)

and World Communion Sunday

October 9: Re-Member: MOSES REMINDS OTHERS (Exodus 19:1-9; Leviticus 26:40-45)

October 16: Re-Member: IT WILL BE EASY TO FORGET (Deuteronomy 8:11-19)


  • 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.     

FALL WEEKLY SUNDAY SCHOOL  @ 11:00AM (no Sunday School on the 5th Sundays)

Preschool-5th Grade: SHINE! Curriculum:  Fall of a Kingdom

  • Preschool-Kindergarten (basement – rooms 1&2)
  • 1st-5th (basement – rooms 5&6)

6th-8th (upstairs to the right)

Senior Youth: 9th-12th grade (upstairs to the left)


Bible Study using the Salt & Light study guide meets in the Prayer Room in the basement. Copies are available in the classroom.

The Adult Discussion/Study class meeting in the fellowship hall and on Zoom (contact Pastor Tonya for the zoom link or watch for the link in the Friday email from her)

“Younger Adults” Class meets in the adult education room in the basement.

**Sunday September 18 all adults will gather in the fellowship hall for further discussion with Eldon and Jane.  You may also join on Zoom – the link will be sent out in Pastor Tonya’s Friday email.

UPPER ROOM and REJOICE! devotional magazines

REJOICE! and UPPER ROOM . . . new issues for September are available above the mailboxes.  Please let us know if you would like a copy mailed to you.                

LPC: Listening-Prayer-Conversation Groups BEGINNING January 2023

Pastor Tonya will be offering something new beginning January 2023 … an opportunity to participate in a monthly LPC group:  Listening. Prayer. Conversation.  The plan is for a once/month simply structured hour of listening to scripture and Spirit, praying with and without words, and conversation with God and others.
A fair number of folks responded positively to an initial email inquiry/announcement about this.  More details will be determined this fall, so stayed tuned!! Likely the group will be in person with the possibility of making it hybrid to accommodate some Zoom participants.  And Pastor Tonya is also open to doing a second group just on Zoom if there is enough interest.

STRENGTHENING Community Connections…


Mentors & Mentees will gather together on Sept 25 during the Sunday School hour and for lunch.  Those who are able will also participate in the CROP walk that afternoon at 2:00pm.  Info about the CROP walk is below, along with information about how to donate.  A portion of the funds raised stays right here in Reno County with organizations working to support those experiencing food insecurity and more.  Another portion of the funds supports organizations around the world though Church World Service. 


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


  • Monday: Sabbath Day
  • 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)

STRETCHING to Serve as Christ Served…


Help is needed on September 24 to cook (starting around 2:00pm), to deliver meals around 4:00pm, and to serve the meal at 5:00pm. Donations of applesauce and salad greens are also requested. Bring to the church the Sunday before, or to the soup kitchen on the 24th. A signup sheet is posted on the “Sign Up” bulletin board in the church foyer. Questions? Contact Kevin Martin Nisly or Sadie Nisly.

SUNDAY MORNING DONATIONS FOR RENO COUNTY FOOD BANK:                                         

SEPTEMBER: 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, tooth paste and tooth brushes.  Travel size – new & unopened – are desirable.


You are invited to support the Reno County CROP Hunger Walk!  One quarter of funds donated will be shared by The Reno County Food Bank and the Christian Soup Ministry. Last year, each agency received
$1080! Church World Service (CWS) will use the rest globally, helping people start small livestock farms or dig wells for their communities. CWS also assists refugees from Ukraine and other nations.   Some from our Mentor & Mentee group will be walking @ 2:00pm at Rice Park, and anyone is welcome to join us! On site registration begins at 1:30pm and you can also register online. 

If you would like to support this effort with a financial donation, you can:

  1. Write a check to “CWS/CROP” and put our church’s name on the memo line.  Either put it in our offering at church by September 25 or send it by October 1 to Emanuel Lutheran Church, 140 E. 39th Avenue, Hutchinson, KS 67502!
  2. OR donate securely on-line at the Crop Hunger Walk website.  Click “donate,” then “General.”

CAMP MENNOSCAH announcements

Camp Mennoscah Annual Meeting and Dedication of the Renovated Campfire Amphitheater

Will be held on September 18 at 6:30pm!  Join us for an evening of song, popcorn, and generic pop, as well as updates and information on the year at Camp Mennoscah.  (It’s like a mini-Camp Sing! Bring your friends for a happy sing-along.)

Fall Scrapbook and Crafts Retreat on Oct. 28-30!   

Crafters and scrapbookers are all invited to come for a weekend of creativity and friends.  Lodging will be in the Retreat Center and cropping/crafting will be in the Main Camp dining hall.  Space heaters will be available for both areas since the repairs for the furnaces will not be completed.  Register here!

Work and Play Day on October 15!  

Share a few hours of your time for the satisfaction of improving camp grounds and some free time wandering the trails, fishing, or whatever your favorite camp activity is.  The day starts at 8:30am at the maintenance shed.  If you are coming from a distance, ask about an overnight stay.  Let us know you’re coming, so we can plan for you and your friends.  Call 620-297-3290 or


We’re taking out the dam on October 16 at approx. 2:30pm!  

Everyone is welcome to join in or to watch.  Gather at the shelter.  (The actual removal of the boards is not for young ages.)  The event will go forward, whatever the weather, unless deemed unsafe.  Call Camp Mennoscah at 620-297-3290, if uncertain.

BETHEL COLLEGE announcements

Sun., Sept. 18 – “Decommissioned Missile Silo Sites: Reminders of Our Past and Future,” a program by Nate Hofer, Overland Park, Kan., 3 p.m.Kauffman Museum. Following the museum’s brief annual business meeting, Hofer, a “Peace Photo Award” winner, will discuss making photographs of decommissioned nuclear missile silos. The project included finding and traveling to the sites, talking with landowners and considering why he takes the photos and whether he considers himself a legitimate photographer.  Hofer’s exhibit of photos, “One and a Half Acres: Images from America’s Decommissioned Missile Silos,” is currently on display in Bethel College’s Regier Art Gallery in Luyken Fine Arts Center, Mon.-Fri., 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun 2-4 p.m., through Sept. 22.

Fri., Sept. 16 – Bethel College guest recital, Spencer Myer, piano, 7 p.m., Administration Building chapel

Mon., Sept. 19 – Bethel College Wind Ensemble concert, directed by Joel Boettger, 7 p.m.Krehbiel Auditorium in Luyken Fine Arts Center

Bethel College Women’s Association will appreciate donations of homemade baked goods for Market-in-the-Round at Fall Festival. Zwieback, cinnamon rolls, fruit pies, and poppyseed roll are especially needed. Please bring to Room 141 in Luyken Fine Arts Center 2-5pm on Friday Oct 7, or 7-9am on Saturday Oct 8. Email with questions.

Bethel College Fall Festival October 6-9, 2022:  For more than 50 years, Bethel College has celebrated education, diverse cultural traditions, special foods, fine arts, crafts and friendship at its annual Fall Festival, held each year on an extended weekend in late September or early October. More than 5,000 people come to Newton and the Bethel campus to enjoy an array of activities.  Features include music, food, class reunions, football, the play Quiet in the Land by Anne Chislett and the STEM Symposium honoring Professor Emeritus of Psychology Paul Lewis. See for the complete schedule.

Check out our Fall Festival 2022 event on Facebook at Bethel College Kansas Alumni Association ( or follow us on Twitter: @ThresherAlumni

SAVE THE DATE: Thursday, Oct. 13, KIPCOR celebrates 50 years of Peace Lectures with Dr. Fania Davis, a leading national voice on Restorative Justice, speaking in Bethel College’s Memorial Hall.

SAVE THE DATE: Oct. 16-17, well-known Reformation scholar Brad Gregory from the University of Notre Dame will give the annual Menno Simons Lectures at Bethel College.

SAVE THE DATE: Nov. 4-5, “The Contemporary Relevance of Erasmus for Today: A Symposium,” with a keynote address by Dr. Greta Kroeker, University of Waterloo, Ontario, on Nov. 4, at Bethel College.


Faith & Life Bookstore in Newton will be selling in our building on Saturday, November 19. This is a great opportunity to shop for Christmas, birthdays, and all occasions – books, inspirational materials, and so much more for all ages. This is open to the community, so plan to bring your friends and neighbors. More details to follow.


Position openings on mfc staff:  nursing positions on all levels, maintenance technician, dietary aides. Apply at or call 620-663-7175.


Four consecutive Wednesdays at 2 and 8 p.m. Eastern time

  • Sept. 14: Women, Wealth, and Well-being. Hear how a “Financial Checkup” can help you achieve a balance of emotional, spiritual, and physical wellness around your money habits.
  • Sept. 21: The Dynamic Story of Stewardship Investing. Learn how Everence® is making a positive impact by incorporating faith and values into our investment options.
  • Sept. 28: How to “ACE” your Financial Plan. Hear how a financial plan can help you align your life purpose with decisions about money. Become more confident in your financial future and maximize your charitable giving.
  • Oct. 5: Retirement Readiness: Understanding your Income Options. You’ll hear sound ideas for generating a retirement income stream that lasts, including when to begin taking Social Security.

For information and registration, email