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Credible communication lifts voices of hope

Betsy Williams
Betsy Williams

Lifting voices of hope, the Fig Tree is that inspirational voice that brings the drumbeat of hope, health, healing, inspiration, celebration, commitment, education, challenge, action and change. It advocates, and brings the chance of new beginnings to our communities. An article on “Christ Clinic and Christ Kitchen tells of turning around the culture of poverty.”  Imagine changing a community from poverty.

Will you be that voice that is captured, to connect people, explore issues, build understanding and stir up passions? Will you volunteer or donate to lend a voice? For such a time as this, we need to extend our sincere gratitude, resources, trust and love to the Fig Tree that has informed, inspired, and involved us.

The Fig Tree lifts up voices of hope to all who have an ear to hear the stories of faith, commitment, outreach and dedication.

Betsy Williams - Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church

Greg Cunningham
Greg Cunningham

Newspapers, obviously tell stories about individuals and our communities. Each newspaper, from the New York Times to your company newsletter, makes editorial decisions about what stories to tell.

Big newspapers tell big stories, and if all we had were big newspapers, many small stories would not be told. The Fig Tree tells stories that need to be told but are not in larger publications .

It tells stories of good works, people making a difference in the world, and blessings in our communities.

One of the most important stories published in the Fig Tree last year was not a happy story, but was one that needed to be told.

It was a story told in other publications in this state, yet but for the Fig Tree, and the Catholic Inland Register, it would not have been told here: An Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) I-9 audit threw 550 workers, one-fourth of Brewster in Okanogan County out of work.

An audit arises when workers’ names do not match social security numbers and ICE tells a company it can rectify that situation, let the people go or be fined for each incidence.

What do we value when such a story goes untold?  By telling this story, The Fig Tree gave meaning to this tragedy, which was one small salvo in the ongoing immigration debate, but to the 550 people who lost their jobs, it was huge, and it happened in our backyard.

The story needed to be told, and if it wasn’t for the Fig Tree it would not have been. There are countless stories that need to be told and thanks to The Fig Tree more are being told.

Greg Cunningham - Immigration and Refugee Resettlement - Catholic Charities

Freda Gandy
Freda Gandy

The Fig Tree is a source of news and information that connects people from various backgrounds. When we read about churches, nonprofits, and universities striving to make an impact on this community, it gives a sense of hope and inspiration.

What touches my heart the most are the personal stories shared by individuals in the community. Their stories take us on a journey through their lives and tell us how their faith helped them deal with life’s struggles and challenges, and how they overcame them.

We also learn about their passions, their dreams, their hopes to improve life and relationships. So let’s continue to go on these journeys and be inspired by real life stories that touch us.

Let’s stay connected to people and let’s do whatever we can to support The Fig Tree and it’s mission.

Frieda Gandy - Martin Luther King Jr. Family Outreach Center

The thing I love about The Fig Tree is that it goes out and seeks positive stories. You can’t look at a newspaper or any media without getting depressed.  That’s when to look at the Fig Tree. I’ve worked for the Institute for Action Against Hate for 10 years and The Fig Tree has done just an amazing job of covering our work.

Jerri Shepard - Institute for Hate Studies at Gonzaga University

Anastasia Wendlinder
Anastasia Wendlinder

Teaching an inter-Christian dialogue class, brought me to Mary Stamp.  Since Vatican II, the Catholic Church has seen the urgent need for ecumenical and interfaith relationships—that we all be one as Jesus prayed.

The Christian churches and religion in general is in a crisis of credibility because we do not have unity.  We are strengthened in our Catholic and other identities to see unity in our diversity. 

Mary has spoken to my classes on how her life and her family’s lives have intersected with the ecumenical movement, and how that brings us in this region the unique publication of The Fig Tree.

Anastasia Wendlinder - Gonzaga University Religious Studies

Gordon Jackson
Gordon Jackson

I have been grateful for years that the Fig Tree is a model for students to aspire to rather than mainstream media.  There are other venues for their talents and skills.

Our students come from a faith background and seek ways to blend their faith and journalism talents.

The Fig Tree is committed to justice.  We want students to think beyond their own needs and think of the big picture.

There’s a tie to St. George who slew dragons.  As The Fig Tree “slays dragons,” it forces us to consider the past and the days ahead.

Gordon Jackson - professor of journalism at Whitworth University

The Fig Tree helps frame the way we think of life, ourselves and our perspectives.  Our donations are making the witness and ministry we share possible.  They are continuing a voice of hope in a time that feels hopeless.

The Very Rev. Bill Ellis - dean of the Episcopal Cathedral of St. John