Category Archives: Current Happenings

Congregational Meeting – September 29

Plan to attend the Sept 29 congregational meeting at 2 pm in the sanctuary.  There will be no potluck meal before this congregational meeting.   A draft policy for the “Care and Accountability for Sexual Offenders” will be presented at this meeting.  After opportunities for discussion September 2019  through April 2020, there will be opportunities for a congregational decision at the April 26 congregational meeting.


Peace Sunday is September 15

BCMC will observe Peace Sunday on September 15 by welcoming Karin Kaufman Wall as our guest speaker.  Karin is the Peace and Justice Education Coordinator at Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Central States.  Following our morning worship service, Karin will join us in the sanctuary for a second hour alternative to answer questions and help educate our congregation on issues of social justice and the role MCC is currently playing in these issues.



Welcome to new Bethel College students!

New students at Bethel College will join BCMC for the worship service Sunday morning, August 18, followed by a brunch for them in the Fellowship Hall at 10:45 am.

A special welcome to Bethel College students with us this morning.  We are glad for your presence with us and hope you enjoy the student brunch served in the Fellowship Hall following the service!


Welcome to Renee Reimer!

BCMC’s new Associate Pastor for Faith Formation, Renee Reimer, began work at BCMC on August 5. Sunday, August 11 is  the installation of  Renee Reimer.  Following worship (at 12 noon) there will be a potluck in the Fellowship Hall to welcome Pastor Renee.


Western District Conference Annual Assembly to be at Bethel College

Friday, July 26 — 7:00 pm     Western District Conference Assembly Worship in the BCMC Sanctuary.   All are invited to this worship!   

Saturday, July 27 — 8:30-9:30 am – Worship/Keynote Address by Glen Guyton, Executive Director of Mennonite Church USA, in the Bethel College Memorial Hall  (OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, NO REGISTRATION REQUIRED)

If you haven’t registered yet for Western District Conference Annual Assembly, you can still register, but you will have to make your own meal arrangements, as the catering headcount has been finalized.  Please join us July 26-27 at Bethel College, for “We Are Witnesses!”.  For more information, go to   Everyone is invited to the WDC Assembly Friday night worship service, July 26, 7 pm in the BCMC sanctuary.

The Resource Library will be OPEN, July 27 during Annual Assembly from 2:30-5:30 pm.  Everyone  is invited (whether attending assembly or not) to stop by for a scoop of ice cream and to tour the library.  It’s also a great opportunity to check out the beautiful artwork on loan from WDC congregations!

There will be a Family Festival on the Saturday evening of the Western District Conference (WDC) Annual Assembly, July 26-27 on the Bethel College campus, North Newton with a hamburger/hotdog picnic, an inflatable bouncy house, a coffee house concert at MoJo’s and more.  It’s open to the public!  (Donations welcome at the event.)  For more information, go to



The Psalms: Honest Conversation with God – Summer Worship 2019

Throughout the summer we will be venturing together into the song and prayer book of the Bible that has come to be known as “the Psalms” (or in Hebrew, tehellim).  Composed over a period of five centuries, the Psalms were central to the worship life of ancient Israel, as they were read as scripture, recited as prayers, and sung as hymns in the temple and synagogues.

As ancient as these texts may be, they continue to speak into our lives and our worship.  In the words of Walter Brueggemann, “They are the voice of our own common humanity…They speak about life the way it really is.”  In them we find honest conversation with God:  joyous exclamations of praise, gut-wrenching cries of lament, heart-felt prayers of confession, songs of thanksgiving.  They help us “add a voice to the common elation, shared grief, and communal rage that beset us all.”   (Brueggemann, in Praying the Psalms, Saint Mary’s Press: Winona, MN, 1993).

As we move into this season, her a a number of ways to engage the Psalms at home throughout the week:

  • Begin and/or end your day by reading a psalm. Consider dwelling with the same psalm throughout the whole week.
  • Spend some time recalling memories of particular psalms and their significance to you at various points in your life. Write about it and/or share your reflections with a friend.
  • Rewrite a psalm. Put it in your own words as you allow it to connect with your own experience.


Candidating Weekend Schedule for Nathan Koontz—June 22-23, 2019

Saturday, June 22

8:30 a.m.-noon Meet with adult Sunday school classes BCMC Gathering Place

  • 8:30-9:30 am Sojourners
  • 9:30-10:30 am Catacombs
  • (10:30-11 am) (break)
  • 11 am -noon Fine Arts and Open Circle

Noon-1:30 pm       Lunch with Deacon Commission

2:30-5:30 pm     Meet with adult Sunday school classes  BCMC Gathering Place

  • 2:30-3:30 pm Issues & Christianity and Bible Study
  • 3:30-4:30 pm Fellowship, Mosaic, and Agape
  • 4:30-5:30 pm Seekers and anyone not affiliated with another group

Sunday, June 23—Candidating Sunday with Nathan Koontz

9:30-10:30 am     Worship —Sermon by Nathan Koontz

10:45-11:45 am   Sunday school elective  “Pastoral care for people of all ages”

Nathan will share his faith journey, followed by Q&A session, with a suggested focus on pastoral care for people of all ages, though any questions will be welcomed.

Noon                    Lunch with Church Board—Fellowship Hall

4 pm                     Time with Kidron Bethel residents Menno Hall

in Assisted Living and Health Care, at Kidron Bethel or other

residents unable to attend church in the morning

6 pm                     Supper with Search Committee



The congregation will vote on the recommendation to retain Pastor Dawn Yoder Harms,  after worship next Sunday, June 16.

Western District  Conference consultant Keith Harder reported on Sunday, June 9, on Pastor Dawn Yoder Harms’ three-year review.

Keith Harder reported to the Church Board on June 6, and the board affirmed the following SCRC recommendation:

“The BCMC Staff Congregation Relations Committee affirms the ministry of Lead Pastor Dawn Yoder Harms, acknowledges the unusual challenges she has faced since coming to BCMC and commends her for effectively pastoring staff and the congregation during that time, and affirms her continued prayerful ministry at BCMC.

“SCRC therefore recommends to the Church Board and to the congregation that Dawn’s term as Lead Pastor be renewed for another three years, with the understanding that she be granted a sabbatical sometime in 2020 with exact details and dates to be worked out with BCMC staff, SCRC and the Church Board.”

The congregation will vote on the recommendation after worship next Sunday, June 16.

Vacation Bible School is Coming!

What do smelly camels, a big fish, and detectives have in common?! They’re all part of this year’s Vacation Bible School,  May 28-31 from 8:45-11:45 am at BCMC! We will be “Detectives of Divinity,” looking for God in the world as we read Bible stories of God’s work!  There is still time to register!   See Mary Hodge or Megan Kohlman with any questions!