Congregational Profile: West Swamp Mennonite Church

Photo credit: Lynne Rush

West Swamp has a rich and long history, celebrating 300 years as a congregation in 2017. Now we strive for a vibrant present and fruitful future as we “reflect God in our living, loving and serving” in Upper Bucks County.

This year we went through a leadership transition as our pastor of almost 10 years retired. While we were looking for the next pastor God had in store for us, we heard from many guest preachers and also had people from our congregation fill the pulpit for half of those Sundays. This reinforced for us the Anabaptist idea of “the priesthood of believers.” Our new pastor, Michael Howes, began on October 1 and we look forward to partnering with him in God’s mission for West Swamp.

Our worship services include scripture and song, prayer and preaching. Music is important to us—we were the first Mennonite church in America to install an organ! Our services use a blend of traditional, contemporary and culturally diverse songs for a rich worship experience, further enhanced by our adult and children’s choirs and Chimin’ In, a tone chime ensemble.

All ages took part in our Comforter Blitz. Photo credit: Madison Mood

We take seriously our call to be the hands and feet of Jesus, supporting local ministries like Code Blue Emergency Shelter for the homeless and the Salvation Army Christmas Carnival. We have people who volunteer weekly at the Care & Share Shoppes of Souderton, quarterly at the Ten Thousand Villages warehouse in Brownstown, and every other year with SWAP (Sharing With Appalachian People). We have vibrant knotting and quilting groups that meet regularly, making comforters for MCC and quilting to raise money for missions. We just recently had a 2-day Comforter Blitz for MCC’s Great Winter Warm-Up.

Interactive worship service at Camp Men-O-Lan with Solidarity & Harmony Church. Photo credit: Marsha High

We work to build strong relationships within our church family and with all who come through our doors, as we seek to draw more people into God’s kingdom by his love and grace. One outcome of our transition time is our Fellowship Prayer Breakfast on the first Sunday of each month. We have been blessed through the years to build strong ties with Crossroads Community Center of Philadelphia and more recently, Solidarity & Harmony Church, a Haitian congregation of Philadelphia.

Prayer requests:

  • Pray that we can be bolder and more intentional in going out into the community to be witnesses of God’s love and grace.
  • Pray that we can grow our Sunday School so that more people are gaining a deeper knowledge of God and his Word.
  • Pray that God will make available the right house in the right place for our new pastor, Michael Howes, and his wife, Sue—in good proximity to the church and in a good area for community ministry.