News and Information

March 1, 2011

Franciscan Is Lead Sponsor Of Nobel Peace Prize Winner’s Tacoma Visit

Franciscan Health System is the lead sponsor of one of the most anticipated events of the year in Pierce County – a public presentation at the Tacoma Dome by Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu on Friday, May 13.

The event, called "Be the Spark," signals the beginning of a movement designed to make the South Sound region a healthier and more caring place to live. Franciscan joins the Greater Tacoma Community Foundation, Pacific Lutheran University, University of Puget Sound, and others in this initiative.

Archbishop TuTu"We are honored to have a leading role in bringing Archbishop Tutu to Tacoma," said Dianna Kielian, senior vice president of mission for Franciscan. "Our mission calls us to emphasize human dignity and social justice as we create healthier communities. Bridging cultural gaps is essential to the Franciscan tradition.

"The archbishop is a disciple of peace and a beacon of hope for people around the globe," she added. "The Order of the Sisters of St. Francis, who founded St. Joseph Medical Center in Tacoma 120 years ago, were also peacemakers. Our organization’s mission, healing ministry and traditions are very much aligned with Archbishop TuTu’s advocacy for justice."

Franciscan is affiliated with Catholic Health Initiatives, one of the largest non-profit health systems in the nation.

Tickets for the archbishop’s presentation are available online at and by phone (1-800-745-3000) or in person at the Tacoma Dome box office (Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.) Prices range from $24 to $42 for adults and from $9 to $15 for students (with student identification cards).

"It is gratifying to be involved in this community-wide effort that Tacoma and Pierce County have embarked upon," said Archbishop Tutu, a prominent leader in the crusade for racial conciliation in South Africa who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984. "Far too often, people think of themselves as just individuals, separated from one another, whereas you are connected and what you do affects the whole world."

More information about the Tacoma event is online at

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