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March 2015 News Events

Jeannine Hill Fletcher gives Flannery Lecture

Jeannine Hill Fletcher, professor of theology at Fordham University in Bronx, N.Y., is the 2015 Flannery Lecturer for the Religious Studies Department at Gonzaga University. 

She will speak at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, March 19, at Cataldo Hall at Gonzaga University on “Love in a Weighted World: The Broken Heart of Catholic Identity.”

The presentation looks at Catholic identity in a fractured world and at disagreement in the Catholic community on what should bind it. 

In the wider world, competing forces of religious diversity and secularization sometimes lead people to question whether holding particular religious commitments is useful, especially when they see how religious identities can create divisions and perpetuate injustice.

Using research in interfaith studies, feminist theology, critical theory and Catholic tradition, Jeannine proposes the possibility of “cosmopolitan religious identities” and considers the broken-heart at the heart of Catholic identity.

Her books include Monopoly on Salvation? A Feminist Approach to Religious Pluralism (2005) and Motherhood as Metaphor: Engendering Interreligious Dialogue (2013).

She has served two terms as co-chair of the Roman Catholic Studies group of the American Academy of Religion.  Her current work is on the relationship between religious diversity and racism, and the need for actively anti-racist theologies.

Jeannine is faculty director of the service-learning program with Fordham’s Dorothy Day Center for Service and Justice, and works with the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition, a grassroots social justice collaborative program. 

For information, call 313-6782.

Journalist speaks on war, world issues

Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Chris Hedges will speak at 7 p.m., Tuesday, March 10, at the Bing Crosby Theatre, 901 W. Sprague.  His presentation is sponsored by the Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane (PJALS).  Chris, a graduate of Harvard Divinity School and a war correspondent for 20 years, is author of several bestselling books including War Is a Force that Gives Us Meaning and Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt.

Now an ordained Presbyterian minister, he writes for the Truthdig website. For information, call 838-7870.

Center plans March retreats, gatherings

Andi McGoran, who has been a pilgrim to Taizé Community in France four times, will lead the Coffee and Contemplation ecumenical spiritual discussion and prayer from 9 to 11 a.m., Wednesday, March 18, at the Immaculate Heart Retreat Center (IHRC), 6910 S. Ben Burr Rd.

Her topic is “Taizé Prayer: An Invitation to Intimacy.”  A high school teacher for 30 years and spiritual director for three, she met the late Brother Roger at Taizé.

Fr. David Kuttner, pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Tekoa and St. Catherine of Alexandria Parish in Oakesdale, and a spiritual director at IHRC, will lead an Evening of Prayer on “The Paschal Mystery: “I Thirst’” from 5 to 8:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 10 at the center.

Beginning at 9 a.m., Wednesday, March 25, IHRC will host a Day of Prayer on “Mary, Model of Perfect Discipleship,” led by Fr. Jeff Lewis of parishes in Chewelah, Springdale and Valley, and St. Joseph Mission at Jump Off Joe Lake.  Ordained in 2011, he was parochial vicar at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Lourdes.

Bishop Emeritus William Skylstad will lead 2015 Holy Week Retreats.  The Women’s Retreat is from 4:30 p.m., Monday, March 30 to 1 p.m., Wednesday, April 1.  The Men’s Retreat is from 2:30 p.m., Thursday, April 2 to 1 p.m., Saturday, April 4.  Participants will reflect on God’s love and the meaning of Divine Presence.

For information, call 448-1224, ext 102 or email

Parent Project classes build healthy families

The Parent Project is an initiative of St. Joseph Family Center to support building healthy families.  It is a 10-week series of classes beginning at 7 p.m., Thursday, March 12, and meeting on consecutive Thursdays through May 14. Parents may wonder what to do as their teens deal with substance abuse, school and behavioral issues, brushes with the law.   The project provides parents with the skills and strategies to bring about healthy changes in their teens. For information, call 483-6495.

Young adults will lead Novena at St. Aloysius

Young adults from Spokane’s Catholic community offer reflections on “Why I Have Hope” for Nine Days of Grace, the 2015 Novena from Wednesday, March 18 to Thursday, March 26, at St. Aloysius Catholic Church, Boone & Astor.  There will be a daily prayer service at 12:15 p.m. (12:30 p.m. on Sunday) and a daily Mass at 5:15 p.m. For information, call 313-5896.

Peace and Economic Justice Conference is March 20-21

The PJALS annual Peace and Economic Justice Conference is Friday and Saturday, March 20 and 21, at the Unitarian Universalist Church, 4340 W. Ft. Wright Dr.  Keynote speaker Judith LaBlanc, a Caddo Indian from Harlem, N.Y., is an organizer at the Alliance for a Just Society.  She also coordinates Move to Money Campaign to change U.S. spending priorities from wars and weapons to jobs and public services.  The event includes three workshop sessions with a total of 24 workshop choices.  For information, call 838-7870 or visit

Beginning Experience classes offered

Two Beginning Experience events for people alone because of separation, divorce or being widowed are underway and planned for this spring.  A six-week “Coping with Being Alone Again” class continues through March 24 at 7 p.m., Tuesdays, at St. Aloysius Church’s parish center.    A Beginning Experience Weekend will be held Friday through Sunday, May 15 to 17, at Immaculate Heart Retreat Center, 6910 S. Ben Burr Rd. For information, call 534-1797.

Plans underway for Yom HaShoah April 19

Spokane’s Yom HaShoah Committee has begun plans for the commemoration at 7 p.m., Sunday, April 19, at Temple Beth Shalom. This year, there is an art competition, as well as a writing contest for middle and high school students.  The theme is “Words That Kill: Nazi Use of Propaganda to Justify Genocide.” The speaker is Bob Herschowitz, a Holocaust survivor from Seattle. For information, call 747-3304.

Whitworth Institute speakers will include Walter Brueggemann

Speakers for the Whitworth Institute of Ministry 2015, which will be held July 20 to 24 at Whitworth University, will include Bible interpreter Walter Brueggemann, Playing God author Andy Crouch and Egyptian seminary teacher Anne Zaki.

They will guide conversation on Jer. 29:7 and the theme, “Pursuing the Common Good: Engaging Culture with the Gospel.”

The week includes worship, instruction, renewal and rest for participants.

Walter, author of more than 100 books and many scholarly articles, served on the faculty of Eden Seminary from 1961 to 1986 and at Columbia Theological Seminary from 1986 to 2003.  He is currently professor emeritus of Old Testament at Columbia. 

Since 1982, Walter has been writing commentaries about the Psalms.  He just published a commentary in 2014. 

An ordained minister in the United Church of Christ, he is also known for his book, The Prophetic Imagination, published in 1978.

Andy’s book, Playing God: Redeeming the Gift of Power, was published in 2013.  His 2009 book, Recovering Our Creative Calling, won recognition by Publishers Weekly. 

In 2012, he became executive editor of Christianity Today and is also executive producer of “This Is Our City,” a multi-year documentary project on Christians seeking ways for their cities to flourish.  From 1998 to 2003, he edited re:generation quarterly.  For 10 years he was campus minister with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship at Harvard University.

Anne, who was born in Cairo where her father was a pastor, attended an international school in Western Canada focused on peace and international understanding.  At Calvin College, she learned to integrate her faith and social justice. 

Married to a Canadian-Syrian pastor and mother of four boys, she holds master’s degrees in psychology and divinity, and worked as a research and development specialist for global worship at the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship from 2003 to 2013. 

She teaches at the Evangelical Theological Seminary in Cairo and continues to serve the Calvin Institute. 

Anne is preparing for ordination in the Presbyterian Church of Egypt, and would be the first woman ordained in North Africa and the Middle East.

For information, call 777-3275 or email




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509-535-4112 / 509-535-1813

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