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Journey Of Faith Adapting To America

Special section - Part two

When Spokane’s Russian refugees traded life in their homelands for religious freedom, they took on a new set of challenges and problems.

They now must figure out how to support their large families while trying to learn English. Uncle Sam offers a monthly welfare check with one hand. His other hand wags a scolding finger for taking it.

When they go to work, they must learn the caprices of capitalism: layoffs and competition for jobs. Meanwhile, they watch their youngest children forget the Russian language and their teenagers adopt the customs of a freer society.

The thousands of immigrants from the former Soviet Union making their home in Spokane face a growing stereotype. Some Americans say they are ungrateful and too willing to take handouts.

Please turn to section H for the second part of a two-part special report called Journey of Faith. The first part ran in last Sunday’s Spokesman-Review.

A Russian translation of the special report will be available Monday. Please see page H3 for information on receiving a copy of the translation.

Also today, please see our editorial board’s challenge to the Russian community in an editorial on page A18.

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