Announcements for December 18-25, 2020

Lessons and Carols Christmas Eve tradition continues at BCMC this year!  The service will be pre-recorded and made available for you to watch at your convenience on Christmas Eve.  If you would like to have a DVD of the service, contact the church office.

Worship on Sunday December 27 will include ample time for Christmas carols throughout the service (30 minutes to be exact)!
Service of Remembrance, January 3
The Deacons will be hosting our traditional Service of Remembrance on January 3, at 4 pm.  This service is a way of remembering those who have passed away in 2020.  If you would like to attend the service in order to light a candle for your loved one, or if you have someone you would like us to remember please contact Nathan Koontz at  Due to COVID 19 restrictions, each loved one will only be allowed to have two people in attendance.  RSVP to Nathan is necessary so that we can make proper safety arrangements for all who wish to attend. This service will be live-streamed and also available to watch via YouTube at a later time.     

As Christmas approaches we are provided an opportunity to be generous and exhibit care to those around us.   One of the ways BCMC provides help for those in need is through the Caring Fund, administered by the Deacon Commission. In the past year we have sent funds to 5 different agencies, and several individuals.  This is an opportunity for you to help replenish the Caring Fund as more needs are expected to become apparent to us. Please help us provide funds for those individuals that need food, rent, utilities,  and for organizations that provide shelter, assistance and care for those in this community, this country, and around the world.  Please contribute by earmarking your contribution for the Caring Fund. Thanks, Jim Robb, Deacon Chair
The Witness Commission has chosen two Advent gift projects for our congregation this year, both addressing COVID 19 related needs:  
The Covid 19 Congregational Relief Fund provides grants to help Anabaptist-related churches  meet their congregational financial needs (such as rent, mortgage, utilities, staff salaries, etc.) or to assist families and individuals in their midst in recovering from COVID-19 hardships.  Priority is given to racially and ethnically diverse churches serving in historically under-resourced communities.   To contribute to this fund, click here. 
The Harvest of Love is a support program managed by the Newton Ministerial Alliance (NMA). When the program started, it was originally to provide food assistance to those who were in need. By now the Harvest of Love also provides support for people in need of rent, utility, and other types of financial assistance. The Harvest of Love is run out of the Salvation Army food pantry. During COVID-19, the need for assistance has been on the rise. To help our community, the Harvest of Love has removed restrictions on how often a family can receive food and financial assistance. 
You can contribute to the Harvest of Love in two ways. You can drop off material donations at 208 W 6th St, Newton. For monetary donations please make your check payable to Harvest of Love. You can mail your monetary donation to Newton Ministerial Alliance, PO Box 1084, Newton, KS 67114

Financial Update
Great news!  December has been a terrific month for contributions, and the church should end the year with a surplus!  Thank you to everyone for your contributions during this fiscally difficult year, and to the commissions and committees that curtailed their spending.  If you are still planning to send in a contribution intended for 2020, please keep in mind that all contributions received by December 31 will be categorized as being for 2020.  Any received after December 31 will go toward 2021 intents.  If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know by email ( or telephone (316-283-2660).  ~  Mike Claassen, Finance Manager
Church Office Holiday Closings
The church office will be closed in the afternoons from now until December 23 due to staff vacation time
.  Whether the office is open or not, you can always be in touch with pastors by giving them a call on their cell phones (listed in church directory).
The church office will be closed Dec 25 – Jan 3 for staff vacation.  Pastor Dawn will be working from home and available by phone or email.

Kauffman Museum at Bethel College is partnering with Humanities Kansas to host the Smithsonian traveling exhibit “Crossroads: Change in Rural America” through Jan. 17. Accompanying it is a local companion exhibit, “Of Land and People: Our Community at the Crossroads,” created from the museum’s permanent exhibit “Of Land and People.” The museum is open 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Tues.-Fri (early close at 1 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 24, and Thursday, Dec. 31); 1:30-4:30 p.m., Sat.-Sunday; and closed Mondays and major holidays (Friday, Dec. 25, Friday, Jan. 1). Admission to the “Crossroads” exhibit is free on Saturdays.
Western District Conference  announcement

The WDC office and Resource Library remains closed due to Covid-19 precautions, and staff members are working from their homes.  Note that staff will take holiday and vacation time December 24 through January 3, 2021, and will be available beginning January 4. 

Camp Mennoscah announcements
1. A Christmas full of light and love to all of you!  The Camp Mennoscah staff and Board of Directors prays for you to find Christ’s love and joy during this not-as-usual Christmas season.  May you find hope, joy, and peace in your celebrations.
2. Camp Mennoscah is a wonderful space for families and groups needing space to spread out!  Facilities for differently sized groups are available with a variety of gathering areas.  Trails and fields are waiting to be hiked and used for fun activities, too!  Contact Camp Mennoscah at 620-297-3290 or to reserve!  You are invited to enjoy this sacred space!
3. A few extra Camp Mennoscah hoodies are available!  (Adult sizes only.)  Contact Camp Mennoscah at 620-297-3290 or  Grab yours before they’re gone!
Mennonite Mission Network Prayer Request:  Join Mennonite Mission Network in praying for the peace witness of the Meserete Kristos Church in Ethiopia amid the conflict between the government of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and the Northern Tigray region.

Western District Conference Prayer Request:  As we celebrate Christmas, give thanks for the gift of multicultural diversity within WDC, and the many different ways congregations embody the presence of Christ.

 Merry Christmas from Mennonite Mission Network
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A Christmas blessingThe Lord bless you and keep you…and give you peace.
Numbers 6:24-26 (NIV) The blessing that God told Moses to give the Israelites is the same one that we send to you today. May the Lord bless you and keep you in this holiday season, and may God’s peace be with you this coming year. ​Work on “The Blessing” started when six-year-old Aliyah Wigginton-Bravo in Ecuador, told her parents Peter Wigginton and Delicia Bravo that she thought it would be fun to ask Mission Network people in different countries to make a video together. Peter coordinated the project with Josh Garber in Spain working on the audio. Mission Network workers and partners in six countries participated with their voices and instruments.  The blessing of your prayers and support make it possible for our workers to be the presence of Christ around the world. This music video comes to you today as a Christmas blessing with heartfelt thanks for your partnership with Mennonite Mission Network.”The Blessing” was written by Chris Brown, Cody Carnes, Kari Jobe and Steven Furtick. 
Merry Christmas! 
Joe Sawatzky

Mennonite Mission Network Church Relations Representative