There has been many different-types of talents involved with the development of HOPE House of Tacoma. And one of the talents is Peter Vukshich, Architect, who shared a passion for prison ministry and his belief in the reduction of recidivism through a Christian process. When he heard of the development HOPE House, it immediately got involved, Growing up in Belgrade, Yugoslavia Peter’s father was a well-known architect and Peter followed in his father’s footsteps.
From remodel design concept to swimming through various building permits; through construction and to include work bees, Peter was there. What used to be a Dental Clinic Peter redesigned the remodel into a 6-room family-style residential living facility. “Peter’s continuous use of imagination both in problem solving, and artistic expression is definitely a blessing to all those involved in HOPE House., state Nelson, Chair of HOPE House. Charlie Williamson, HOPE House Director says, “Peter is a pioneer which he re-designed this facility and his efforts is greatly appreciated by everyone. We had some pretty tough scrapes with regards to the design, but Peter got us through”. And Danny Houser, Prison Ministry Chaplain and HOPE House Director stated” I was always amazed that Peter was involved in every work bee of construction work for this building. He always had a saw in his hand reconfiguring the rooms to meet his designs. He was definitely more than what you would find on paper, which he was not afraid to get his hands dirty.”
On February 23, 2021 Peter passed went to sleep and is now resting until the Jesus’ return, which Peter’s name will surely be called. Peter’s involvement with HOPE House will always serve as a reminder that God can and will us anyone for His glory and to remind us of the importance of transitional housing. Peter is survived by his spouse Branka Vukshich who currently serves on the Board of Directors.
Willard Loewen began serving as the Prison Ministries Coordinator in the Oregon Conference soon after retiring from ministry in 1999. In this capacity he combined the Good News of Jesus, the Holy Spirit's power, and Willards own unconditional love to inspire scores of inmates to turn their lives around. Many became life-long friends, and remain faithful to God upon release. Some younger inmates even called him Dad.
Willard ministered with his wife, Kathy, by his side and together they discovered a whole new mission field where they ministered to inmates on Death Row, the penitentiary, several mens' prisons, two womens' prisons, as well as youth prisons. As Prison Ministry Coordinator, Willard trained & oversaw Adventist volunteers who served in correctional institutions throughout Oregon. In addition, his gentle friendly manner made friends of countless correction officers & chaplains. What brought the most meaning to Willard, though, was teaching inmates & answering their Bible questions. Willard was saddened to finally retire from approximately 16 years of prison ministries due to his severe scoliosis & Parkinson's Disease. Washington Conference was blessed to have Willard and Kathy as members these past few years when they moved to Washington to be near family. He sadly passed away in August 2020. A memorial service will be planned in his honor in 2021. Willard was excited to hear about the soon-to-open HOPE House of Tacoma, where inmates will become acclimated to life-after-prison in a Christian setting. As a tribute to his legacy, the family invites friends to send contributions To HOPE House of Tacoma in Willard's honor, in lieu of flowers. Click on the button below to donate. If you'd like to send a note of encouragement to Kathy, please email it to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will pass it along to her.