Saint Martin’s Celebrates 125 Years

Saint Martin’s University and Saint Martin’s Abbey are celebrating their joint 125th anniversary throughout this year.  The university plans to  host a virtual celebration to commemorate this milestone anniversary on Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020: The Saint Martin’s University 125th Anniversary Celebration. Alumni, friends of the university and community members are welcome and encouraged to participate in the online festivities.

For this year only, the 125th anniversary virtual event will replace the annual Saint Martin’s Gala, the University’s major fundraiser for student scholarships, which was to be held on that same date. Jacques Pépin, the French celebrity chef was scheduled to headline the 2020 Gala but suspended his travel this fall because of the possible ongoing implications due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). While he will not be here this November, chef Pépin and his daughter Claudine have committed to joining us next fall to host the 2021 Gala.

The program for the 125th Anniversary Celebration will feature videos highlighting Saint Martin’s rich history. Featured videos will look into its future; stories from current students and alumni; blessings from the newly elected abbot and monks of Saint Martin’s Abbey; a celebratory toast; and an opportunity for attendees to support students by helping Saint Martin’s University raise critical funds for student scholarships.

“The Saint Martin’s Gala is one of our favorite annual traditions at Saint Martin’s. While we had hoped to combine our 125th anniversary with Gala this year, the safety and health of our family, friends and community remains our top priority. We are looking forward to seeing everyone next year, including Jacques Pépin and his daughter, Claudine, who have committed to hosting our 2021 event. ” shared Saint Martin’s University President Roy Heynderickx, Ph.D.

In addition to celebrating Saint Martin’s past, the event will also focus on recent success and shine a light on it’s bright future. For more information about the anniversary and the virtual celebration, visit

Giving Back in Thurston Co.

A great way to quickly learn about your new community and meet new friends is to get involved with a nonprofit organization. Every community offers numerous opportunities to support these worthwhile causes. Finding organizations that are meaningful to you will make the experience most rewarding.

These four questions can help you find your perfect nonprofit match:

  • Do you have a passion? By identifying what motivates you, such as sports or outdoor pursuits, environmental or conservation issues, working with children, or assisting the elderly, you’ll start to narrow down the list.
  • How much time can you give? Figure out how many hours per week or month you’d like to contribute to an organization. If you have schedule limitations, check to see if the organization can work around those.
  • What do you bring or want to acquire? It’s important to know how you’d like to contribute to an organization. Are you interested in providing leadership, planning events, or being a social media guru? Volunteering is also a way to get practical training and experience to help your career.
  • How do you want to serve? Consider whether you prefer working one-on-one, such as mentoring a teen or helping an adult learn to read, or working in a group, such as helping to renovate a home or coordinating fundraising activities.

Once you’ve had a chance to consider your ideal organization, start exploring what’s available. If you worked with a nonprofit in your previous community, there’s a good chance you’ll find a local chapter in Thurston County too. Three consortiums support a variety of community nonprofits and the lists of their member organizations are a good resource.

Want to get involved but don’t feel you have the time as you get settled? Consider attending a fundraising event. Events are a fun way to meet like-minded people, raise funds for the cause, and give you a feel for the organization.