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Archive 2017

December 2017

Recovery and rebuilding are still underway from wildfire disasters in the 2014 Carleton Complex Fire and 2015 Okanogan Complex Fire.

Homeless Connect is one-day opportunity for people experiencing homelessness to access many resources in one place.
Editor’s friend visits home in Puerto Rico, reports on the conditions, takes solar kits.

Spokane Symphony conductor Eckart Preu chose churches for baroque concerts because they are fit that music genre.

Tyler Wiley, who overcame addiction at Oxford House, is starting an Oxford House in Lewiston.

Sheryl Kinder-Pyle, presbytery executive, introduces churches and region to ‘missional transformation.’

Teacher honored by NAACP Spokane said teachers need to teach curriculum so it is relevant to students of all races.

NAACP Spokane honors Pastor C.W. Andrews for 44 years of leadership at Calvary Baptist and in the community.

World Relief celebrates its welcoming the 10,000th refugee in the Inland Northwest since the office opened in 1989.


Fr. Solanus Casey, a Capuchan monk, was recently beatified in ceremony in Detroit.

Editorial We are meant to live in community, be good neighbors, not be armed to kill

As women gain voice in raising challenge for sexual harassment in the workplace, will it change the culture?


November 2017

To educate people on their goals to preserve resources—land, water, fish, wildlife and culture—for future generations, the Upper Columbia United Tribes produced a film, “United by Water.”

Christ Kitchen is a ministry that does a business that supports its work
Article North Central Washington United distributes resources to immigrants
Catholic and Lutheran leaders discuss documents prepared for Reformation 500th out of 50 years of dialogue

University of Idaho historian Bill Smith tells how sport can foster development

Playright-director gives girls platform to usevoices as tool for change

Retired nurse promotes social justice through NAACP and other groups

Jobs and education are key concerns for Fran Hammond.

Churches learn about agencies serving homeless people downtown
Two speakers share on Engaging Communities for Justice at Gonzaga Institute for Hate Studies Conference
Article Shannon Polson helps start small Methow Valley Episcopal worshiping community that relies on members
We can find our niche for action when we know what others are doing

Seasonal wisdom suggests letting anger go makes space for what we value


October 2017

The Arc both serves and advocates for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Interfaith leader creates opportunities for people to learn about the many faiths in Spokane.
Ministry of Benedictine Sister Meg Sass out of Monastery of St. Gertrude has had impact on area outreach centers.
The commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in 2017 invites reflection on church life and Christian unity

Baha’is mark 200th anniversary of the birth of their founder, Bahá’u’lláh, in 2017

Jolie Monasterio's ministries are rooted in her faith that now draws her to serve The Women's Hearth.

Camp for childhood cancer survivors engages them in typical activities as Ross Point in Post Falls.

Greater Spokane Substance Abuse Council facilitates substance abuse education and prevention to save lives


Area Lutherans mark Reformation’s 500th anniversary with hymn festival

Editorial Media reports on disasters may overwhelm, but we need to keep attentive so we can act


September 2017

Eclipse moments of awe call us to take responsibility for God’s creation.

In gratitude, food bank recipients often become donors and volunteers.
Kristen Kuempel will be installed Sept. 16 as Eastern Washington Idaho Lutheran synod’s next bishop.
Unity in the Community celebrates racial, cultural and ethnic diversity of the region for 23rd year.
Woman who was helped by hearing the story of another woman who experienced abuse, now finds healing in sharing her story.

Community Partners Program raises more than $9,000 to support Resource Directory.

March for Justice gathers speakers and nearly 300 to invite the community to begin a 'journey for justice.'


Gonzaga University and community fall events engage people for justice and to address hate.

Local Feed My Starving Children recruits volunteers to fill MannaPacks

Article Mill Canyon residents organize to protect air and water.
Editorial How do we live in these times? We need to be a good story

This is a time to find possibilities even when the worst has happened

June 2017

Union Gospel Mission camps draw children from churches' neighborhoods.

New Habitat staff in North Idaho learn need for flexibility in constructing Habitat homes; Habitat-Spokane Blitz Build is June 5-16
The region’s summer camps offer varied programs for connecting kids to faith. Camp Cross program integratesinto year-round diocesan education program
Camp Twinlow's mission projectsdraw youth groups from churches around the U.S.


To grow, Camp Spalding recruitstwo-thirds of campers from outside denomination.
Despite summer options to do other activities, record number come to camp at Lutherhaven.
Camp life at Camp Gifford motivatescampers to stretch faith lives and commitment

N-Sid-Sen donates used mattresses to Family Promise of Spokane

Tibetan student appreciated learning about cultures, faiths at Whitworth


Philanthropist, mountain climber uses foundation gifts to change lives

Demands on food banks are the greatest during summer months

Community rallies yet again to graffiti in solidarity with Salish School

Eastern Washington Idaho Synod elects woman pastor as next bishop












Fig Tree starts Community Partners program to build circulation and underwriting for Resource Directory

Unity in the Community activities celebrate the region’s many cultures

Editorial During the summer, faith community needs to remain alert, speak
Editorial Loving neighbors includes being prepared to help in natural disasters

May 2017

Holden co-directors use art to build relationships, stir people’s creativity

Attorney Norm Gissel’s commitment to civil rights frames his life of advocacy, promoting literacy
Rockford United Methodist pastor brings insights from global connections, refugee resettlement to her ministry and World Relief Benefit.
Catholic Charities' Rising Strong program will heal families together in the former Holy Names Convent
Holy Names Article

County Conservation Futures buys Holy Names Sisters’ Spokane convent, campus to preserve it's ecological and environmental attributes.

Coeur d’Alene Tribe honored as watershed hero for management of Lake Coeur d’Alene Basin
Water Warrior Award

Women recognized by the Sierra Club Spokane group for clean-up advocacy in the Silver Valley and Coeur d'Alene Lake.

Sounding Board

Excerpts from students' essays for Holocaust Remembrance (Yom Hashoah) challenge people today to be aware of attitudes that led to the Holocaust.


Faith leaders back science, challenge climate change, heal local lands, waters


April 2017

Salish School of Spokane continues to grow, teaching children by immersion.

Cameron Conner finds that relationships make a difference in effectiveness of humanitarian aid.
Observance of the Holocaust, Yom Hashoah, educates people to prevent genocide

Spokane Hindu Society introduces basics of their faith in Meet the Neighbors gathering in March.

Episcopal Diocese of Spokane consecrates and ordains its first woman bishop in festive service.

To conserve energy, St. Mark’s Lutheran Church removed its old incandescent lighting and installed new LED lighting.

Habitat-Spokane over 30 years has drawn people out of poverty as it built 270 houses.
Sounding Board

Speakers at 2017 Benefit events share how The Fig Tree moved beyond news to reveal community.

March 2017

Fig Tree editor Mary Stamp and American Bosnian Muslim refugee Admir Rasic shared their perspectives on propaganda

Rally for Refugees and Benefit Concert raise $10,000 for local World Relief office.
Three generations of the Morris family will help Temple Beth Shalom set up and clean up for the 75th annual Kosher Dinner on Sunday, March 5.
Annual Legislative Conference speakers pray for vision, call to listed and share attitudes and experiences crucial to understanding people who become poor.

Advocates from FAN and Earth Ministry, representatives in legislature and city council member present information on priorities and bills before 2017 legislature.

Two people who work with at-risk youth seek to help them succeed in school to graduate and have opportunities in life.

Workshop speakers present insight on criminal justice, racial justice and police accountability.

Spokane Low Income Housing Consortium keeps community, legislature informed on issues of affordable housing.

Immigration initiative workshop addresses how Spokane can be a welcoming and compassionate city.

Senior home offers workshop on resources for aging people called 'P.E.A.C.E. of Mind'
Michele Vazquez is one of several Peace Corps returnees sharing their experiences of living and serving in another culture and country.

Anastasia Wendlinder of Gonzaga University invites attendees to pursue solutions.

Lutheran Bishop Martin Wells reflects on the need for advocates and activists to engage in self care so they can persevere.

Editorial Superlatives used to confuse and stymie us are rhetorical, meaningless exaggerations
Editorial Sharing and savoring each others stories is a way to health in these times

February 2017

Thousands of MLK marchers honor work of past and ongoing work for civil rights and overcoming discrimination.

Churches form Leavenworth ReSettles with the goal of connecting with refugees and Muslims.
Community Living Connections finds resources to help keep seniors, disabled in homes

Whitworth President Beck Taylor says an ally is in solidarity to own his power, show up, speak out and be counted for justice.

Students, ad exec share the role Spokane’s MLK Center has played in their successes.

Post Falls Food Bank operates like a supermarket for its clients.

Chinese students, who are 20 percent of St. George's 8th to 12th graders, add to the school's diversity and cultural awareness.
American Guild of Organists connects 42 organists in the region

Gordon Jackson, a retired Whitworth University professor of journalism, recently published two books, one in print and one online.

Editorial Trust is essential to our living together as a society and nation

Spending time with elders we can find their wisdom ‘wisdoms’ us

Sounding Board

Excerpts and summaries of stories, comments from Spokane’s Women’s March

January 2017

Fawn Schott works through VOA shelters and programs to meet people’s basic needs.

Pastor works through The Grove Community to expand housing in West Central Spokane and bring economic justice.
Scott Cooper is responsible at Catholic Charities for outreach, advocacy, Catholic social teaching, and emergency financial assistance.

To help feed hungry people, Steven Brashears rescues quality food from hotels, restaurants and grocery stores.

Pastor called to serve church and community has been involved with food bank, teen center, veterans’ retreats and praying for small churches.

Grandmother is storyteller in Coeur d’Alene schools, dispelling cultural stereotypes of American Indians.

Speakers define ‘gracism’ and consider ways to challenge racism as God intersects with racism.

Jerry Sittser of Whitworth Universityoffers retreat on overcoming adversity and finding redemption.

Sounding Board Newsletter excerpts and letters to the editor

Anxieties rekindle, reigniting proactive quest for equality and equity

Editorial Media can inform and inspire or can numb and overwhelm as info-tainment.


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