Nearly 300 volunteers, donors and faith and community leaders gathered early on October 25 at Mount Zion Temple for Interfaith Action’s annual “Bringing Faith to Life” breakfast. Energy and commitment best described the mood in the room!

Joyce Ester from Normandale Community College (and a member of Interfaith’s board of directors) welcomed the group and introduced “Mr. D.,” also known as the beloved Mr. Thomas Draskovic, Hunkpapa Lakota from Standing Rock Reservation in South Dakota and a Lakota culture teacher at American Indian Magnet School. He read a beautiful blessing in Lakota and then translated it into English.

“The Community Gets to Choose” was the title of Interfaith Action executive director Randi Ilyse Roth’s inspiring message to the crowd. Her talk reinforced Interfaith’s belief that if we harness the untapped volunteer power of faith and spiritual communities, we can make major progress building economic opportunity in Greater Saint Paul — we just must choose to do so.

Breakfast attendees got to see the premiere of Interfaith’s new video and to hear from two program participants: Victoria Abraham, who works with Interfaith Action’s Department of Indian Work (DIW), shared her story of getting assistance and then work at DIW. Sage Demarce shared his thanks for the stability Project Home offered him and his family. They now are living in their own apartment.

The morning concluded with Louis André Fischer, an Interfaith Action board member, encouraging the crowd to share their resources to advance the mission and vision of the organization — and they did! We were thrilled by the generosity of our community.

Thank you to all who shared this truly special morning and made an investment in the work of Interfaith Action.