Patrick and Connie Copeland-Malone (LVC ’91) shared their LVC story with us, and we’re sharing it with you below.
We joined LVC in 1990 as the oldest and only one of two married couples. We served in Chicago through the Greater Chicago Food Depository (Connie) and the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless (Patrick). Our residence was Casa Esperanza along with three other wonderful roommates (Vicki, Sonvy and Lisa). We choose Chicago specifically because of its rich history in community organizing and were not disappointed as one of the nations most exciting faith-based organizing efforts occurred that year with the formation of the Christian Community Development Association (CCDA – an organization we would actively support and work with over the following decade).
Looking back some thirty years now it is difficult to pin out any one or two trainings, events or experiences that shaped or altered our Christian faith or commitment to social justice ministry. But between our housemates, our fellow LVCers in Chicago and Milwaukee, our work site placement co-workers, the many gracious volunteers and guests at various homeless shelters and street ministries and of course Chris and David Bekemeier we were profoundly touched in ways that would shape the next twenty years of urban ministry back in Eugene OR and then later in Spokane WA.
One very specific and tangible way LVC influenced us was our choice to create and live in intentional Christian community for nearly a dozen years. This type of incarnational ministry inspired us to then create a series of neighborhood-based nonprofits to address the need for safe, decent and affordable housing (Jubilee Community & Housing Ministries) and then economic empowerment (Christ Kitchen) and then a gang intervention and at-risk youth ministry (called Project HOPE Spokane).
CCDA and the likes of Robert Lupton, John Perkins, Ray Bakke, Fr. Greg Boyle and Van Jones who were all introduced to us through the expanse of LVC would be invaluable mentors along our journey, especially as a mid-aged family raising young boys in very impoverished inner-city neighborhoods.
We greatly treasure our time and experience with LVC and what its meant to our family and faith. We encourage old and young alike to explore LVC as a highly recommended service year. Our financial giving is evidence of our desire for other singles and couples to grow in their sense of call.
Interested in seeing what a lifetime of ministry, nonprofit leadership, and community organizing looks like? See the links below of Patrick and Connie’s work and advocacy.
Project Hope OLD VIDEOS (2008-2012):
(Cob Oven by Jan Shaddy)
(Riverfront Farm – Seeds of Change through KSPS Northwest Profile, July 23, 2009)
(Riverfront Farm featuring Connie Malone, September 29, 2010)
Project Hope NEW VIDEOS (2014-17):
(most recent PHS, now River City Youth Ops promo video, August 10, 2017)
(March 22, 2017)
(Monicea Brown interview)
(KXLY September 2016)
WEST CENTRAL VIDEOS
(STCU commercial with Kate Burke)
(STCU commercial with Kate Burke on PH and Edible Tree Project)
(West Central driveabout with Pastor Kris Christensen from Holy Trinity Episcopal)
(WC evictions and lack of affordable housing)
(Spokane Urban Farm Tour 2016 featuring Swagerty farm in West Central)
(Keith Kelley profile through STCU; commitment to reneighboring concept)
(Bobby Enslow of Indaba Coffeehouse; a building project Project HOPE helped inspire)
(STCU video features West Central neighbors transforming their neighborhood)
(STCU video featuring Mika with Batch Bakery)