This Week @ FMC

Oct 16-22, 2019

As I look toward next Sunday’s worship service which will focus on our STRETCHING into the world priority, this poem by Naomi Shihab Nye seems appropriate, and a beautiful expression of love. Perhaps it also has something to say about who we are in community and how we show up for each other. Blessings to you this beautiful day!!


A man crosses the street in rain, stepping gently, looking two times north and south, because his son is asleep on his shoulder. No car must splash him. No car drive too near to his shadow. This man carries the world's most sensitive cargo, but he's not marked. Nowhere does his jacket say FRAGILE, HANDLE WITH CARE. His ear fills up with breathing. He hears the hum of a boy's dream deep inside him. We're not going to be able to live in this world if we're not willing to do what he's doing with one another. The road will only be wide. The rain will never stop falling.

CALENDAR for this week

Wed 10-16 Quilting 9am-Noon WNAF (Wednesday Night @ First) - IT’S STORY TIME!! This week’s focus on “Forks in the Road” Dinner 5:30-6:30pm Conversation 6:30-7:30pm

NOTE: Senior Youth will meet on October 23

Thurs 10-17 Prayer Group 10:00am Centering Prayer Noon Congregational Ministry Team 5:15pm

Fri 10-18 Visitation with the family of Dale Schrag, 5-7pm at FMC

Sat 10-19 Dale Schrag memorial service 11:00 at FMC

Sun 10-20 October Worship Series - THRIVAL: Survival with a Purpose! Thrival: STRETCH Wide in the World, Ephesians 5 Preaching: Tonya Ramer Wenger Worship Leader: Delon Martens Ushers: Steve Schrag, Russ Wedel, Cheryl Warkentin, Diane Zeimer Greeters: Lona Willems Pianist: Peggy Stucky Scripture Reader: Delon Martens Nursery: Russell & Julie Goering Fellowship Host: Allen Yoder

M&M’s fundraiser lunch FMC’s Business/Budget meeting

Mon 10-21

Tue 10-22 Women’s Bible Study 10:00-11:30am Faithful Community Coordination Team 2:30pm Faith Formation 5:15pm Pastor Congregation Relations Committee 6:30pm

DEEPENING in Christ...

OCTOBER WORSHIP – THRIVAL: Survival with a Purpose!

It was Chuck Neufeld who introduced this word, “thrival” when he met in January 2019 with our Coordination Teams and Congregational Ministry Team. The point is, we’re not here to survive: we’re here to thrive, with a purpose. And we DO have a purpose! Its rooted in scripture and our Anabaptist tradition and has the potential to help guide us into our future. We have said we exist to:

-invite people into a deep, growing relationship with Jesus, -become strongly connected in the body of Christ, -be equipped and encouraged to stretch wide to live out faith in the world -and to steward faithfully every resource in support of all of this!

Our worship series in October will invite us to remember and renew our commitments to this purpose as disciples of Jesus. We’ll be listening in to Paul’s letter to the church in Ephesus as a guide. These worship services will also help to shape our thinking and planning for the Future of First. What bold experiments might we try? What questions do we need to ask? What changes might we make? What risks are you willing to take to nurture seeds that will grow into First Mennonite’s next 100 years in Hutchinson KS?


We’ll be experimenting with some changes to the order of worship in October, including moving the ANNOUNCEMENT time to the beginning of the worship service, at 9:30am. Most all announcements are included in the weekly email (also available in hard copy in the rack next to the mailboxes at the church). The announcement time in worship will still include opportunity for you to verbally share announcements, but do let us know in the church office if you have an announcement you’d like to be included in our print materials.


Our study together will continue on Tuesdays at 10:00am through November 19. It’s not too late to join! Let Pastor Tonya know if you need a book.


The Adult Discussion Class begins a discussion of this book this Sunday!. Please join us in the fellowship hall at 11:00am. Books are available for $13.50. One reviewer of this book says this: “I’m so very thankful for this book by Meghan Larissa Good! ‘The Bible Unwrapped’ is a book about the BOOK that will lead you to the person who will change our life.” We anticipate a lively and meaningful study, continuing approximately 3 months. For this coming Sunday read Chapters 1-4 and the “Storytime.”........ Call the church office or call Pauline directly if you would like to pick up a copy of the book before Sunday.


Children’s classes for all ages - Shine: Stories of God’s People Senior Youth - Living the Anabaptist Story Adult Uniform Lesson Study - Responding to God’s Grace (Harold Kroeker, teacher - Room 102) Adult Discussion Class - The Bible Unwrapped book read & discussion - meets in the fellowship hall

UPPER ROOM devotional magazine

November-December issues are available above the mailboxes.

STRENGTHENING Community Connections


Thank you to all of you who were able to complete and return a survey. Please plan to attend our Business Meeting THIS SUNDAY October 20 after Sunday School for further discussion.. Childcare will be provided during the meeting. A budget proposal is in your mailbox at church, or can be found on the table outside the sanctuary. Please also put December 8 on your calendars for the FMC Annual Meeting and Senior Youth Fundraiser Lunch. (Russ Wedel, Delon Martens, Julie Esau, Kevin Martin Nisly, Mike Dirks, Pastor Tonya)


FMC Business Meeting - OCTOBER 20 … lunch and meeting following Sunday School (childcare provided)

Agenda will include the following: --- 2019-2020 Budget --- Future of First: Pastoral Staffing and Prioritizing Pastoral Tasks

Lunch will be served by the Mentors & Mentees as a fundraiser for the M&M Fund.

Mission Festival (and Potluck Meal) November 3, 2019 … we’re excited to welcome Paul Yoder with Hands of Christ as our speaker in worship and Sunday School

FMC Annual Meeting - December 8, 2019


Fall WNAF (Wednesday Nights at First) sessions continue. On Wednesday October 16, we will focus on the topic of “FORKS in the ROAD.” Dinner will be served between 5:30-6:30pm, and the conversation will be from 6:30-7:30pm. Some questions for reflection are below, and you are also invited to bring pictures, objects, scriptures, poems, etc. that illustrate for you something of this theme. Conversations will be intergenerational - we are looking forward to strengthening the bonds between us as we share our stories. Our plan is that each evening will include sharing from someone who has prepared a story in advance, scripture reflection, time for your personal reflection on the questions of the day, and sharing around tables.


Reflect on and tell of a time when you had a ‘fork in the road’ in front of you … What were the questions and considerations before you? How did you process the ‘fork in the road’ … alone, with others, in prayer, with scripture, etc.? Is there a story or teaching in scripture that spoke to you then, or speaks to you now as you remember? What or who helped you come to a decision? If it was a difficult decision, how did you hold and live with that discomfort? If it was an easy decision, what contributed to the ease you experienced?

Reflect on your experience of God during the moments when: … the ‘fork’ was far in the distance, but you were aware of it … the ‘fork’ got closer and closer and a decision was required … a decision was made … you actually turned in the way you felt led, and left the other option behind

In what ways did the ‘fork in the road’ you are reflecting on change you and the course of your life? Do you carry any lingering ‘what if’s’? What do you do with those? For what are you most grateful in that experience? What have you learned through your life about how God is present in discernment and decision making?


A Celebration of Life for Dale will be on Saturday, October 19 at 11am at First Mennonite Church followed by lunch and a time of sharing. Visitation with the family will be Friday, October 18 from 5-7pm at FMC.


After a way too long hiatus, the Hymn Sing and Potluck at our house is back!! Saturday October 26 beginning at 5:30pm. Come for the food (bring a dish to share if you can), the fellowship, and the healing balm of our songs of faith!! You don't have to be a 'good' singer …just come and listen if you prefer. You are all welcome!


Join us in the kitchen and on the lawn Halloween evening to make and serve around 500 donuts to trick-or-treaters who flood this neighborhood! Talk to Jonathan Wenger if you can help.


Save the Date: Faith and Life will be bringing the Christmas Pop Up shop to First Mennonite on Saturday, Nov. 23rd. They bring all kinds of gifts as well as books for your Christmas shopping. Please put this on your calendar now, so we can have a good sale. This is a fundraiser for our Library as she gives us a percentage of her sales. More information will be coming.


Please send your contact changes to the church office as soon as possible.


We invite you to sign up to serve as hospitality host, preparing juice and coffee on Sunday mornings. This is a wonderful way to serve each other and to welcome those who may be visiting on a Sunday morning. There is a sheet on the signup board. Thank you!


This year the banquet features Patricia Goering Smith, a graduate of Moundridge High School, who will talk about her book, Revolution Revisited: Behind the Scenes in East Germany, 1989. It tells the inspiring story of East Germany’s non-violent revolution in 1989 and features a handful of mostly young activists in Leipzig, East Germany. The organization and actions of this small group of activists mobilized the movement for democratic reforms and ultimately brought down the East German state and the Berlin Wall and changed the world.

The banquet will be held at the Pine Village Wellness Center in Moundridge on November 7, starting at 6:00 p.m.. The cost of the meal is $20 per plate payable at the door. RSVP by texting or calling Nancy Stucky, 620-532-5693, by November 2.

STRETCHING to Serve as Christ Served


MCC MEAT CANNER - November 7 is FMC’s day at the canner, from 3:30 pm to close at Cedar Crest Church in Pleasantview. FMC is expected to have at least 6 people there. See Eldon Wagler for details.

Volunteer with SWAP: Sharing With Appalachian People (SWAP) is a program of MCC Great Lakes, addressing multiple challenges of low-income families in Appalachia, including home repair and personal need. Groups of all ages are an essential component of SWAP's ministry and can now sign up for 2020. Please consider forming a group, large or small, to come and experience a week at one of the locations in West Virginia or Kentucky. For more information go to or call Angela Maggard at 606-633-5065.

Infant Care Bundles are available in the foyer . . . the shopping has been done for you! Your payment of $25 will purchase a bundle to be donated to MCC for families displaced by war or disaster and are used in a number of other settings to help support mothers who lack the supplies they need for a new baby. These bundles will be dedicated on Christmas Eve.


Hoffnungsau Mennonite Church’s annual mission supper is just around the corner!! On Saturday, October 19, from 5-7, we will be serving our traditional sausage meal with mashed potatoes, gravy, creamed peas, zwiebach and homemade pie. All proceeds raised this year will go to support Mobility Worldwide - an organization that provides Personal Energy Transportation (PET) carts to some of the world’s most vulnerable people. Moundridge is home to one of many PET workshops across the nation. For more information, call (620)585-6733 or visit Hoffnungsau Mennonite Church (43 13th Avenue, Inman) on Facebook. Come one, come all! We’d love to serve you supper on the 19th and together raise funds for God’s Kingdom work!


Volunteers are needed for two work days in Eureka, KS, Saturday October 26th and November 2nd. Let's plan to meet at First Mennonite Church in Newton at 6:00 am in the East gravel parking lot. We will plan to be back in Newton between 5:00 and 6:00 PM. We will be completing several roofs that were damaged in the 2018 tornado there. Transportation, tools, water and lunch will be provided. Please text, email or call Jordan Miller with any questions! 316-217-4570


FMC will once again be joining area churches in ‘leaving our lights on’ to collect food for the Food Bank. This year’s date is Wed November 20, and we will be having a soup dinner that evening as well that we’ll invite our neighbors to. Be thinking of what kind of soup you will bring, and plan to attend!!


SAVE THE DATE—IBA BENEFIT DINNER: The annual Instituto Bíblico Anabautista (IBA) benefit dinner will take place Friday, October 18 at 6 pm at First Mennonite Church in Newton, Kansas. A smothered pork burrito dinner will be prepared and served by Chef Carlos Lujano. (Chicken and Meatless burritos available by request.) A short program with some words and greetings from Marco Güete, Director. Dinner is by donation. IBA is a program of Mennonite Education Agency’s Hispanic Ministries for Leadership Development and Pastoral Education. For any inquires contact Violeta Ajquejay Suastegui at: or call 316-281-4342.


Everence Medicare workshops scheduled for Hutchinson

Everence will hold an informative Medicare workshop at its office in Hutchinson in October. Attendees will learn about the various Medicare plans and what they cover; plans that supplement Medicare; and enrollment details and deadlines. The Hutchinson presentation will be held at 524 E. 30th Ave. on Thursday, Oct. 17 (6:30 p.m.). Space is limited. Reserve your spot soon by contacting Michelle Ramer at (316) 283-3800; (877) 467-7294 or


Scrapbook and Crafts Retreats at Camp Mennoscah happening soon!

The Fall Retreats are November 1-3 and November 15-17. Register online at!


Art by Kathleen Schroeder ‘77 will be on display Oct 4-25, in the Robert W. Regier Art Gallery. The show is titled, “Read the Pictures: Notes from a Visual Learner.”

Newton-Bethel Performing Arts presents the Donald Sinta Quintet. Fri., Oct. 18, 7:30 p.m. Memorial Hall. Ticket purchase required

Menno Simons Lectures by Alain Epp Weaver (all in Krehbiel Auditorium in Luyken Fine Arts Center

“Constructing Christian Service: Landscapes of MCC,” looking at Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), which turns 100 in 2020, in a missiological context. Sun., Oct. 27, 7 p.m.

“Listening and Waiting: MCC and Shifting Understandings of Christian Service.” Mon., Oct. 28, 11 a.m.

“First to the Household of Faith?: MCC, Humanitarianism and the Church.” Mon., Oct. 28, 7 p.m

“Accompanying, Connecting, Measuring, Dismantling: Missiologies in Tension within MCC.” Tues., Oct. 29, 7 p.m.

5th biennial Worship & the Arts Symposium, Nov. 21-23

“Many Cultures, One Worship: A Foretaste of a Reconciled Heaven in a Broken World,” with David M. Bailey and Urban Doxology of Richmond, Va. Fee reduction when 3 or more members of one congregation register as a group. See for more information and online registration.