Sign Spells Collaboration


Photo by Pastor John Weston of Sky Prairie Church captures Pastor Ron Hessel and Wade Zaharie from Summit Northwest fastening the 5 by 16 sign for the United Methodist Church.

POST FALLS, Idaho, November 12, 2014  -  (Sometimes when you least expect it, you end up on the front page of the local newspaper. Here a story from  the Coeur d'Alene Press by Brian Walker.)

What do you get when you cross a United Methodist with a Seventh-day Adventist?

Getting the job done.

When a member of Sky Prairie,a United Methodist church, became ill and couldn't complete a sign for the church's newest home in the Harbor Ridge plaza across Seltice Way from Trading Co. Store, Pastor John Weston presented the need at a monthly meeting of local pastors.

From there, members of Summit Northwest Ministries, a Seventh-day Adventist church, and the Coeur d'Alene Seventh-day Adventist church went into action to help make the lighted 5-by-16 sign a reality.

"This sort of thing is not done often in the church community, especially across denominational lines, because we tend to be territorial and competitive rather than cooperative," said Gary Miller, a member of Summit Northwest Ministries. "We don't need to be on islands by ourselves in this stormy sea."

Weston said the project included construction of the lighted sign box and erecting the sign on the side of Harbor Ridge. He said the collaboration saved his church thousands of dollars.

He said his church is appreciative of the helping hands.

"(Summit Northwest Pastor Ron Hessel) really took our need to heart and went back to his church," Weston said.

Bill Dick, of the Coeur d'Alene Seventh-day Adventist church, owns a welding and fabrication firm in Coeur d'Alene called Mobile Service Technologies and helped construct the sign.

"This is friends helping friends," Hessel said, adding that his church is familiar with moving to a new location and facing the associated logistical hurdles. "We've been here, done that."

Weston said the project, while it didn't come off as originally designed, was done on "God's timing."

"This will be nice to help let people know we are here and that we are putting our best foot forward," he said.

Wade Zaharie, a member of Summit Northwest and a volunteer for the project, called the effort "community." A forklift from Ace Hardware next door was used to erect the sign.

"We need to recognize what we can do at home," Zaharie said. "Churches should take care of people more as government gets bigger."

Sky Prairie moved into Harbor Ridge in April after being located in the former Post Falls movie theater, the former Steve's Sports Dugout and, most recently, at Red Lion Templin's Hotel.