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Feature Articles 2016


December 2016

Covenant United Methodist community folded more than 1,400 origami cranes for a peace prayer center.

Community leaders speak out and plan events to counteract hate.
Talibah Adeeba prepares children to be good citizens.
Amy Levad, Flannery Lecturer at GU, challenges people to think of mass incarceration in terms of racial justice.
Spokane couple and son are among 10,000 who have gone to Standing Rock out of concern about the environment and tribal rights.
Neal Schindler spends time with people and addresses their needs at Jewish Family Services.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters from Los Angeles challenges NAACP Spokane to speak up and protest

As the Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane (PJALS) celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2015 and 2016, it focused events around its values.

Two are among many from Inland Northwest challenging Dakota Access Pipeline

Pat McCormick, Gonzaga, invites people to gather in post-election vigil on “Welcome, Not Walls”
Sounding Board Community leaders speak out: The recent hate activities in Spokane County are acts of intimidation and cruelty and will not be ignored.
Editorial The cycle of giving circles in the faith and nonprofit world to strengthen all

As campaign rhetoric turns into hate crimes, community is ready to act


November 2016

Contacts with Nepali crafters through Far East Handicrafts led to support of a village school.

Providence Health Care begins program to help patients and families have care discussions
Gregg Sealey, new Inland District Superintendent, comes alongside congregations to listen, provoke transformation.
Lutheran Community Services will resettle 30 unaccompanied refugee minors in coming year.

Diversity of Whitworth University faculty, staff and students has increased in Roberta Wilburn’s nearly 10 years at the School of Education

Model United Nations program introduces Gonzaga University students to global issues.

Through Baha’i faith, David Gregory and Pat Sanders find ways to make their footprints in the world.

Retired peacemakers continue their commitment to build just, peaceful world

Article Area tribes, local groups, national denominations express solidarity

Human rights advocate Maxine Waters will speak at the Spokane NAACP’s Banquet Nov. 12

Editorial Struggling in divisive times to celebrate the diversity that enriches our lives

‘Spin Room’ in living rooms can reflect respect for relationships


October 2016

By meeting and sharing stories, tenants organize to act together on common concerns.

Blessings under the Bridges blesses both volunteers and homeless people
Professor raises questions to help people participate in forming policy on genome editing
Family Promise of Spokane joins in Community Housing and Human Services 24/7 shelter program and adds another day center.

Along with leading the procession, vergers do behind-the-scenes preparations

Coeur d’Alene Glass Recycling, a nonprofit, recycles glass in Kootenai County.

Compassion Week and World Peace Day events uplift call for justice and compassion in bringing peace


September 2016

Project Hope involved 50 West Central youth in summer 2016 gardens, lawn care.

New director of Gonzaga Institute for Hate Studies brings insights on media
Powwows are a time for celebration, healing and connection with roots.

Franciscan sisters close St. Joseph Family Center, several stay in Spokane area

Phil Tyler, new NAACP Spokane president, connects with issues in the wider community

Partnering for Progress provides education and community development for people in southwest Kenya

YWCA Spokane partners with Women’s Healing and Empowerment Network and other nonprofits to educate congregations on domestic violence


June 2016

Book inspires small group at Faith Lutheran Church in Leavenworth  to embark on a community solar project.

The power of art to communicate is key to “The Bridge” exhibit that stirs interfaith understanding and reconciliation.
Recent discussion on “Media and Racism” looks at how media portray Muslim, immigrant and African-American communities.

Many elements behind summer experiences faith communities provide at camps.

Camp N-Sid-Sen buys new mattresses, prepares for fire safety.

Lutherhaven celebrates its 70th year of providing summer camps on Lake Coeur d’Alene

Additional camps at Camp Cross means campers can attend more than one session.

Ross Point addresses campers’ fears in its program theme and in fire safety

Twinlow camps are multi-age, plus specialty camps, including a service camp

Camp Spalding adds nature program so campers learn to appreciate creation

Forty walkers raised more than $6,366 in the 2016 CROP Hunger Walk in Spokane.

Cuts to Domestic Violence programs affect clients in two programs in Spokane - the YWCA and Transitions.

Local team starts Jesuit Volunteer EnCorps program for retirees in Spokane
Editorial Understanding propaganda helps peoplediscern truth and falsehood
Sounding Board Faith, environment groups align in solidarity with indigenous people






May 2016

Couple retire from long careers in ministry, development to apply skills in Botswana with Peace Corps.

Coeur d'Alene real estate agent reflects on years of human rights activism through Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations.
Parish minister finds outlets for her commitment to justice and peace
Living in two worlds, Sikh woman guides organizations to value diversity

Unity in the Community celebrates the myriad of cultures in the area

Native Non-Native Talking Circle creates understanding and healing
Exhibit stirs reflection on King’s dream of equality and justice for all

Goodwill Industries recognizes former client with Graduate of the Year Award.


St. Joseph Family Center in Spokane will close its doors Sept. 30.


Faith Action Network said poor fared well in 2016 state budget


Respecting diversity paves the way for peace in organizations, society


Evangelicalism, like the Dry Falls, may be diverted in this election season


April 2016

Food for All nurtures plants, farmers' markets and access to food for low income people.

Ghanan who benefited from Catholic Relief Services food and school shares his story in U.S.
Admir Rasic, a Bosnian Muslim, uplifts recognition of contemporary genocide at the annual Yom Hashaoh service.

Sandra Nokes builds safe, faith-filled educational environment at Trinity School

Women Leading Together promotes relationships and self-awareness.
Parish nurse in Post Falls addresses emotional, physical and spiritual health.

Unity pastor offers Alternatives to Violence training programs in prisons.

New partnership helps Habitat double home building

Benefit speakers uplift ways Fig Tree reflects diversity to build understanding

New human rights task force advocates for and brings justice to vulnerable people

March 2016

Preparation for ministry has shifted from primarily theology and Bible to include organizing and leadership for outreach.

Episcopal Diocese 'repurposes' Holy Trinity Church to become the West Central Episcopal Mission to heal neighborhood divisions.
Holy Names Sister Linda Haydock says when religion and politics come together, there is need to keep perspectives in balance.

Jessie Dye and John Sirois discuss toxics, clean energy, climate change, fish passage, Columbia River and more.

Gonzaga education professor reviews roots of education and issued of education today

Workshop addresses criminal justice issues at Eastern Washington Legislative Conference.

Skyler Oberst promotes Charter for Compassion and supports City of Spokane becoming Compassionate City.

Habitat-Spokane moves office and store, builds relationships among neighbors.

Jewish community shares traditions of music and food at Kosher Dinner.

Couple plan Jewish and non-Jewish visit to Israel, including visit to Hadassah Hospitals.

Communication scholar tells Gonzaga about hope he sees for dialogue and peace in Israel and Palestine.


Leaders offer prayers and theological reflections at Eastern Washington Legislative Conference.


Speakers at annual benefits tell impact of The Fig Tree’s coverage of diversity


We must let our faith inspire us to continue to pursue racial equality and justice.

February 2016

About 350 people learn about and make new friends at the Spokane Islamic Center

Walter Kendricks brings a lesson of hope to Spokane, connecting the community as president of the Spokane Ministers’ Fellowship.
Barbara Miller organizes Silver Valley to persist in cleaning up mining contamination.

Gonzaga professor and rabbi builds bridges of understanding among people of different faiths and perspectives.

Supermarket CEO sees giving back as part of his obligation in life, faith and work

Life Center encourages participants to be involved in community outreach and global partnerships.


Women in Spokane partner with women in El Salvador to educate children.

Sounding board

Dean of Cathedral of St. John explains background of recent dynamics in Anglican Communion

Editorial Faith calls us to rise up out of the swamps of life and be God’s family

Debate is ongoing about what the relationship of religion and politics should be


January 2016

MLK Outreach Center launches capital campaign to double its capacity in two-story facility.

The 100-year-old Fellowship of Reconciliation recognizes the 40-year-old Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane.
FAN honors imam from Tri-Cities for interfaith leadership

Dale Soden’s 20 years of research compiled in book on Northwest religious activists as outsiders

Bishop Thomas Daly helps Catholics find hope, focuses on priestly formation, Catholic education and spiritual growth

Intercommunity Peace and Justice Center challenges corporations, advocates for sustainability and justice, and empowers women and young adults.

Alex Jackson sees role as CEO at Providence as a ministry of caring, stewardship and justice.

Our Place served vulnerable people in West Central Spokane helping provide food, bus passes, utilities, toiletries, housing and more.

Hearth Homes helps mothers recover from substance abuse, domestic violence and trauma

Speakers and workshops at the 2016 Eastern Washington Legislative Conference will explore “Our Responsibility for the Common Good

Editorial Media education can help us discern our responsibility and media’s role

Guns and weapons harm, kill and destroy through use and through diverting funds that would be spent to help people.


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