- Location: Manhattan, Kansas
- Organization Date: December 11th, 2013
- Pastor: Jonathan Haney
- Ruling Elders: Will Mann, Mike Stewart, Joel Wallace
- Deacon: Nate Butter
If you’re looking for a church with impressive numbers, a beautiful building, and great coffee, you can cross Manhattan Reformed Presbyterian Church off your list. (The coffee is good most days, but not great). You can also cross it off your list if you’re church-hunting in New York. We’d love to have you, but it’s a bit of a drive.
Still interested? Here’s a taste of what to expect, should you worship with our church family on a given week:
If you pull up to the parking lot expecting a church-building, you won’t find one! We currently meet in a community Senior Center. Each week, the set-up team transforms the dining room into a sanctuary, then back to a dining room again after evening service.
If you try to sneak through the doors of the senior center unnoticed…you’ll probably fail! If the kids don’t give you a hug or petition you for a piggy-back ride, an adult will probably notice you and come say “Hi,” or offer you some of the aforementioned coffee. We are a small congregation, and we are always excited to have new visitors—but we see you! Don’t expect to avoid meeting us if you come!
If you stick around for service, you may notice people from several nations worshipping with us! One of the wonderful aspects of living in a college town is that students from China, Iceland, India, Paraguay, Japan, and numerous other countries are brought to our back door! Pray that we would make the most of these opportunities to share the gospel with all nations.
If you want to get involved mid-week, you might decide to join our midweek fellowship gatherings that meet on Wednesday nights. The aim of these small groups is to not merely spend time together on Sunday mornings, but to share our lives with one another. Or, if you’re a lady, you can attend ladies fellowship and enjoy food, Bible Study, and the occasional craft party or cookie exchange.
If you want to be involved in evangelism, you could join the jail study! At jail study, you might meet anywhere between 1 and 17 inmates to study the Bible with them on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month as you discuss the book of Mathew. You could also join some of our college students as they participate in campus evangelism at Kansas State University.
If you are a college student, you can meet other likeminded college students at KSURF—Kansas State University Reformed Fellowship. Your Friday nights could be full of social events ranging from lip-sync battles to radio theater events, as well as a monthly Bible study led by Pastor Haney. You could even join a discipleship group, where you will be mentored by a more mature believer.
If you keep coming back, it won’t take you long to notice that there are lots of goodbyes in our congregation—some, very hard. One of the unique aspects of worshipping in a college town and a military town is that our population is very transient. We’ve welcomed many college students and military families into our midst, and waved goodbye to these same dear brothers and sisters a few years later. While we are grateful for the opportunity to know so many people, please pray for perseverance for those here who remain at MRPC, that we would love whomever God brings to us for the time He gives us with them. And, if you are looking for a church, please consider joining us! We need more laborers, and many in the congregation are praying for more families to join our midst.
If you are thinking right now that MRPC has a lot of exciting things happening, you are right. God is showing His kindness to us in a variety of ways. If, however, you are thinking that our congregation is without flaws, discouragement, and challenges, then you are wrong. Sharing life with people means sharing their burdens, hardships, and sins. There are interruptions. There is the exhaustion that accompanies having plenty of needs and less people than desired to meet them all. There is the sin in our own hearts that tempts us to live for ourselves. There is the frustration that marks ministry in which efforts are expensive and visible results are not always immediate. So dear reader, please pray for us!
Pray for strength to fight the sin that remains in us and for protection from the evil one. Pray for spiritual growth in our hearts and visible growth in our congregation. Pray for our ministries, our homes, and our lives, that God would use them to bring glory to His great name.
And, while you’re praying, praise God for the work that He’s doing here! It is an amazing thing when the God of the universe chooses to use weak people like us to build His kingdom. May His kingdom advance here in Manhattan, Kansas!