Missoula is a town recognized for its diversity of culture, ideologies, and landscapes; this diversity applies to the various faith communities that are an integral part of the city’s identity. Within the city limits there are mainline Christian denominations, evangelical Christian congregations, Buddhist Sangha communities, Reform and Orthodox Jewish communities, and a Greek Orthodox community. Many of these faith communities come together in interdenominational and interfaith cooperatives which work together for positive support, spiritual uplift, and constructive change in our town. One example is the Missoula Interfaith Collaborative, which brings together faith communities and local organizations in collaborative efforts aimed at serving human needs and addressing community challenges. Another example is SALAM, or Standing Alongside America’s Muslims, which is an interfaith association working against the rise of Islamophobia and for the strengthening of supportive relationships between people of differing faiths.
Through these efforts and collaborations, Missoula’s faith communities work together to provide practical solutions to many of the challenges of society, including active support of the local homeless shelter, foodbank, emergency outreach measures, reintegration of formerly incarcerated individuals, and legislative initiatives aimed at supporting the marginalized.
Provided by Pastor John Daniels, First United Methodist Church.