Spotlight on Outreach

Compiled by John Wallingford

The Cathedral reached out to our community in some new ways these last few months, in addition to long-time outreach endeavors such as volunteering at Crosswalk, West Central Episcopal Mission, or the Windfall. Have you heard about these new opportunities? Here is a wrap up and a hint of things to come.

  • We answered phones during the KSPS fund drive. Chatting with callers in kindness made me think about Meals on Wheels, where the kindness of conversation is worth as much as the food. Or crisis hotlines where conversation can be a life saver. One elderly man living 80 miles north of Calgary bought tickets for a concert in Calgary as a Christmas present for his wife. We talked about when he’d spring the surprise. It was lovely, listening to his talk about the love he had for his life’s partner.
  • We joined Lands Council for the 15th annual Spokane river clean up, working the edge of the river to fetch beer cans and such, lulled by the rhythmic chatter of water over rapids. Not much more than a mile from the center of the city, you could hardly see evidence of development. This river is a treasure, clear and clean.
  • The visit to Hutton Settlement was described in the Chimes. There are a number of people who were not able to go then, but who would like to tour. Hutton’s Program Director David Milliken was one of the panelists at the Empty Bowls fundraiser for West Central Episcopal Mission on Sept 28th as was Bishop Rehberg, speaking to the importance of partnerships in Outreach. If you are interested in touring Hutton, let me, Gretchen Ramey or Mike Leiserson know and we’ll keep you informed as we set up the next tour.
  • Chapter submitted a resolution to Convention for our Diocese to plant Paris Groves of trees, respecting the Paris Climate accord. Our research established new relations with the Finch Arboretum, the Spokane Soil Conservation District, Lands Council and Spokane Ponderosa, each of whom has recommended sites for Groves. One possibly overseen by the WA Dept of Transportation is alongside the North/South corridor. Imagine a Cathedral Grove there! We expect to work through the winter to refine plans for spring planting season.
  • The Cathedral was invited to join Spokane 350, a new interfaith group for environmental concerns. This group offers a collective voice for environmental issues, stay tuned to learn of opportunities for involvement.
  • We have reached out to the League of Women voters to see how the Cathedral can help their efforts to educate and encourage participation in voting. September’s Episcopal Journal‘s lead story was on the responsibility Episcopalians have to vote! Our via media tradition positions us well to help the process, holding our personal political perspectives in check. It is getting late for the current election, but we hopefully have started a long-term relationship.

We expect to begin a new phase of Outreach activity by convening regular Committee meetings. Watch for the announcement of a meeting in early November.

Finally, let me invite you to propose outreach activities.  I’d love to see every parishioner active in at least one reach out into our community. What activity would you invite your fellow parishioners– or folks who are not yet a part of our faith community– to join you to do?

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