A Spectrum of Faith: World Religions in America's Heartland Drake Community Press, Writing "with" the community.

Since its debut April 6th, A Spectrum of Faith has received praise from readers, families, community leaders, and educators. Our goal is to circulate A Spectrum of Faith classroom sets across Iowa school districts this year. Teachers may borrow sets of 25 books via their local Area Education Agency, school library, or through DMARC (an interfaith organization that responds to basic human needs and provides a context for interfaith dialogue).

A Spectrum of Faith: World Religions of the Heartland Book Trailer 

When the Bhutanese Refugees brought their Hindu beliefs to Iowa, they had no official place for them to celebrate. Instead, they make do with gathering in their homes. It’s a tight squeeze, but the sense of community makes it easier for the Bhutanese to breath. To live. But today, the Bhutanese Hindus are one of 15 different faith communities in Des Moines featured in the Drake Community Press’ latest book, A Spectrum of Faith: Religions in the World of in America’s Heartland.

One goal of this book is simply to make Iowans more aware of the rich diversity of religion in their state and how that diversity is a function of Iowa’s rich history of welcoming refugees and immigrants - Tim Knepper

After the fall of Saigon, the Tai Dam, an ethnic minority group from Laos and Vietnam, fled to Thailand for refuge. After facing the threat of displacement once again, the Tai Dam came together and wrote letters to each and every U.S. state governor.

The first to respond to the Tai Dam’s crisis? Iowa’s former Governor

Robert D. Ray. Not only was he the first to respond to the Tai Dam’s letters, but he made Iowa first to welcome the refugees to America.

Since then, Iowa has been a haven for most refugees: Vietnamese, Somalians, Bosnians, and Bhutanese. Each group brings relatively little with them, save for their religious beliefs. These communities welcome us to their places of worship, from a Hindu temple in a corn field to a basilica in the middle of Iowa’s capital city.

And now it’s our turn to share with readers their stories.

A Spectrum of Faith invites readers on a vivid journey through words and pictures into the diverse religious communities of greater Des Moines. From exploring the faith traditions of recent immigrants to a closer look at forms of worship familiar to most, this collection provides a rich glimpse into the scared practices and spaces among us.

With your help, many students will gain access to this unique tool for cultural learning. Your contribution of any number of A Spectrum of Faith books is greatly appreciated!

Donate Today!

Each donation helps in three ways: 1. The books you donate will circulate among Iowa classrooms, noting your company name* 2. Teachers using the books will receive a free A Spectrum of Faith Teacher's Resource Education Supplement for grade K-12. 3. 100% of profits from A Spectrum of Faith: Religions of the World in the Heartland go to DMARC.

A Spectrum of Faith Book Sponsorship Opportunities:

Individual book donations: $30 Small Reading Group, set of 5: $100 Study set, 10 books: $200 Classroom set, 25 books: $500 Multiple Schools/Libraries, 50 books: $1,000

Click the "donate" button below but if you would like to write a check, please make checks payable to DMARC, noting "A Spectrum of Faith" in the memo line.

Mail to: Des Moines Area Religious Council | 1435 Mulberry Street, Des Moines, IA 50309

A Spectrum of Faith: Religions of the World in America's Heartland is an ALL-IOWA BOOK: From the faith communities who practice in Iowa, to the authors who wrote A Spectrum of Faith as a service project, its Des Moines-based publisher—even the printing was done in Iowa!

Thank you for supporting cultural learning in our state.


Bob Blanchard

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