Why Should I Support Spirit in the Desert? 2018-02-22T16:02:11+00:00
Why Should I Support
Spirit in the Desert?

Read What Our Stakeholders Say …

The Stakeholders of Spirit in the Desert Retreat Center are people who provide substantial financial support for the center. Stakeholders know that Spirit in the Desert is a holy place where people experience hospitality and renew their calling in the world. They envision doubling the number of guests of all faiths who will experience renewal, reconciliation, healing, and transformation.

You can learn about some of the Stakeholders and their motivation for supporting Spirit in the Desert in their stories below.

If you would like to consider becoming a Stakeholder, one of the Stakeholders or a member of the Executive Staff would be happy to visit with you. Contact Richard Andersen, Executive Director at 480-488-5218 or Email him

ken & joyce bash

Ken & Joyce Bash, “Passion For Serving”

Joyce said, “The Center has a unique ability to make a significant difference in individual lives and in the community.” Ken added, “The Healing of Memories retreat for veterans and first responders, the Boundless Compassion retreat, and the many other programs would not be the same experience in a meeting room at the Westin. Spirit is a special place of healing and renewal for people of any background.”

randy beard

Randy says his motivation for giving to Spirit in the Desert is his desire to be a part of Spirit’s way of touching lives with healing and reconciliation. He also wants to support the retreat center’s vision of expanding the number of interdenominational, religious, and non-religious groups it serves.

mary and dennis dahlen

“Stories motivate us. When we hear the stories of transformation about people attending Spirit in the Desert, our motivation to support the Center remains strong and rewarding.”

bob and nancy hutson

Bob and Nancy Hutson, “Supporters from the Beginning”

Bob served as Chairman of the Board for six years and Nancy participated in meetings and retreats for members of their congregation. Nancy’s retired parents from Wisconsin also served as retreat center live-in hosts for several years during the busy winter months.

david and muffy tiede

The Tiede’s support Spirit in the Desert because people of all faiths and backgrounds experience hospitality in a retreat setting and find renewal, reconciliation, healing, and transformation.

howard and mary wennes

Howard and Mary Wennes, “The Original Stakeholders”

It took a great deal of effort to organize the retreat center, develop programs, and find donors for more buildings. Mary and Howard were involved every step of the way turning the gift into the reality of a retreat center.

john and eleanor yackel

John and Eleanor Yackel, “Sharing and Supporting Each Other

 John said, “Jesus was all about justice. When I attended retreats at Spirit in the Desert, I had a feeling of belonging to a community of people from all walks of life, sharing and supporting each other.”

richard andersen

“I am in awe of how God leads us to serve where we are needed. I am passionate about the hospitality and resources that Spirit in the Desert gives our guests so they can experience renewal, reconciliation, healing, and transformation.”

Stakeholders of Spirit in the Desert

Investing in and inspiring others in their generous support of Spirit in the Desert

Members of The Stakeholder Council are donors who have a heart for the mission of Spirit in the Desert and covenant to:

  • Make their own investments at the upper levels of Wings in the Desert  with an annual gift of at least $5,000.
  • Invite others to join them as Stakeholder Council Members.
  • Consider joining The Simeon & Anna Society through their legacy gifts.
  • Gather at least once each year in advance of the Annual  Meeting of the Board of Directors to be briefed and offer their counsel on the strength  and effectiveness of the ministry of Spirit in the Desert.

When you come to Spirit in the Desert, you sense this has been an indigenous “holy place” for centuries, long before land titles of “ownership.” Even now, this place is held in trust by a local, national, and inter-national network of participants, presenters, donors, board, and staff; Lutheran, ecumenical, inter-faith, and seeking.

All are stakeholders in the shared mission of renewing people’s callings in the world. The members of the Stakeholder Council advise the Board and advance the mission with annual investments of $5,000 and more.

Once again, all are welcome!
~ Pastor Ted and Marietta Johns, Co-Chairs

The Simeon & Anna Society of Spirit in the Desert

Creating a Legacy of gifts for the long-term benefit of Spirit in the Desert Ministry

Spirit in the Desert was founded through the legacy gifts of a family with a vision for the blessing this retreat center would be for generations after them.

Simeon and Anna saw God’s light to the nations beyond their years. (“My eyes have seen!” Luke 2:30).

Members of The Simeon and Anna Society have made planned gifts in and/or documented their estate commitments to sustain the mission of Spirit in the Desert for generations to come.

The Board of Directors will honor these legacy gifts for the long-term benefit of Spirit in the Desert.

The names of living and deceased members of The Simeon and Anna Society will be inscribed in the Estrem Center and published in each Annual Report of  Spirit in the Desert.

Spirit in the Desert

American Lutheran Church

Richard Andersen

Jayne Baker

Ken & Joyce Bash

Randall Beard

Breiter, Lorna

Paul & Donna Campbell

Mary Ann Chandler

Richard & Nancy Christiansen

Dennis & Mary Beth Dahlen

Paul & Louise Evenson

Grand Canyon Synod ELCA

Richard & Barbara Gunderson

Pamela Hendricks

Robert & Nancy Hutson

Ted & Marietta Johns

Lord of Life Lutheran Church

Bob & Gretchen Ravenscroft

David & Martha Tiede

Carol Toensing

Howard & Mary Wennes

West Valley Lutheran Thrift Shop

John & Eleanor Yackel