Author Archives: bcmc

Harvest of Love

It’s time for the Harvest of Love!  The Harvest of Love is an annual campaign in our local community (Newton and surrounding Harvey County) to raise funds and food to stock the food pantry located at Salvation Army, 208 W. 6th Street in Newton.

The Harvest of Love campaign runs during November and December, and is co-sponsored by the Salvation Army and the Newton Ministerial Alliance. Local congregations, individuals, schools, businesses and other organizations are encouraged to contribute financial contributions and non-perishable food to support the pantry.  These food supplies provide groceries for hungry families and individuals in our community.

At Bethel College Mennonite Church, we support the food pantry throughout the year, by collecting non-perishable food items on the first Sunday of the month.  (Just bring items to worship, and put them on the front pew under the balcony in the sanctuary, and a member of the congregation will take them to Salvation Army).  During the season of Advent (November 30 – December 28) food items will be collected weekly at BCMC as our Advent giving project.  Financial contributions should be made out to “Harvest of Love” and sent to Salvation Army at 208 W. 6th St., Newton, KS 67114.

Let’s all join in the Harvest of Love!

Menno Simons Lectures at Bethel College

Walter Sawatsky will present the Menno Simons Lectures at Bethel College October 26-28 on the theme Going Global with God in the Third Millennium.  All are invited to the lectures which will take place in Krehbiel Auditorium on the Bethel College campus:

Sunday, Oct. 26 – 7:00 p.m. – Pluralities of Mennonite History: Why Russian Mennonites as Paradigm?

Monday, Oct. 27 – 11 a.m. (Bethel College convocation) – Reconciling Free Churches to Two Millennia of Global Christianity

Monday, Oct. 27 – 8:00 p.m. – After 500 Years: Pressing Issues on Globalization of Mennonite Witness

Tuesday, Oct. 28 – 7:00 p.m. – Full-Orbed Integration of Worship, Ethics, Nonviolence and Public Theology for the 21st Century

 Walter W. SawatskyWalter Sawatsky is professor emeritus of church history and mission at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminar in Elkhart, IN.  He is a former research scholar with Mennonite Central Committee and edited two journals, Religion in Eastern Europe and Mission Focus: Annual Review.   He was coordinator of the 33-volume Russian Bible Commentary translation project (1978-93); a member of the Global Mennonite History Project Organizing Committee (1997-2011); and convener of the conference “Mirror on the Globalization of Mennonite Witness,” November 2011 at AMBS.  Sawatsky has continued to teach periodically since retiring from AMBS in 2012, as well as working on numerous writing projects.

Pastor’s Post

We are blessed at BCMC with an abundance of wonderful youth. A good portion of my energy over the past six weeks has been spent getting to know them: their names, families, passions, hopes, dreams, and struggles.

1724262_1470628393201239_498726110_nEach and every participant in BCMC’s youth program is involved in numerous activities on top of school – from football to school newspaper to youth orchestra to tennis and cross-country. In the midst of an endless flurry of activity, I am constantly humbled when they all show up to be together on Wednesday nights and even Sunday mornings – laughing, sharing, and sometimes venting about odd teachers and boring classes. I hope that BCMC can be a true space of Sabbath for our busy youth.

The season of life we call “youth” is a roller-coaster ride. Contrary to popular belief, teenage years are probably not the “best years of your life.” Youth cope with immense challenges and stressors far beyond choosing where to attend college or how to navigate relationships with parents and teachers. Youth sponsors, David and Karen Levan and Ben Lichti, and I wonder about how to best be a supportive and life-giving relational presence for youth as they navigate their growing sense of independence and identity formation. How do we as a congregation continue to communicate how a life modeled after Jesus is relevant in this stage of life?



During a recent time of sharing, a couple of our youth group members who spent two months with their family on a bike trip to Alaska talked about how their eyes were opened to the vast landscapes, diversity, and possibilities of God’s creation. The same can be said about the life of faith, and the same can be said for our youth as well – vast, diverse, full of possibility, and created by God.

– John Tyson