Our Story

Have you ever received an incredible gift?

Salt House is birthed out of incredible generosity and a vision to provide a community for emerging adults on the Eastside of Seattle to belong to and sort out questions of life and faith.

Our building was built in the 1950's and housed Trinity Lutheran Church for 60 years of ministry. In 2013 Trinity closed their doors and generously donated their property to Holy Spirit Lutheran Church (HSLC), a thriving church community in the Juanita neighborhood. Did you hear that? Generosity!

What to do with this gift?

The community at HSLC gathered groups of people together to pray and dream about the bold, beautiful possibilities of this gift be used for. Approximately 250 ideas were written down – from low-income housing to low-cost childcare to a school of the arts to a community garden. What bubbled to the top was the longing for young adults to have a faith family where they can grow in relationship with God, deepen connections and friendships with others, and discern ways to engage in the needs of the world. To be the “church” in fresh ways; a community that embodies the compelling life of Jesus, welcoming in all kinds of young folks. 
In the spring of 2014, Pastor Sara Wolbrecht was called (hired) to be the pastor of this ministry! Given her deep love of the Eastside (having grown up in Redmond) and her experiences with discipling others, the hiring team felt she was the best fit! She and her husband, Jason Bendickson, began gathering together small groups of young adults to share in a weekly meal – to encounter the generosity of God that meets us in the food we share, in the company of one another, in the time spent in prayer. This small community was the seed for what eventually became Salt House.
The name “Salt House” emerged out of this group – “salt” names how Jesus invites us to live in ways that bring out the flavors of God in the world (Matthew 5:13-16) just as salt enhances flavor. “House” names that this is a community where you can come and belong – find a home here.

A small-scale renovation got underway in November 2014 at Salt House to make necessary ADA updates and a few fun ones (garage doors in the sanctuary)! And on March 29, 2015 Salt House held it's first public worship service. With a creative, engaging worship and an experimental approach to what it means to live faithful lives following Jesus, it has been a wonderful journey since then...and it continues!

Engaging with Homelessness

In December of 2015, the emerging community at Salt House said "yes" to the big, bold adventure of partnering with the New Bethlehem Project and Catholic Community Services to help fulfill their vision for a Day Center for families experiencing homelessness on the Eastside of Seattle. And on November 6, 2016 that vision became a reality as the Day Center opened it's doors for the first time. Located in the basement of Salt House, the New Bethlehem Day Center is reaching and meeting the real needs of those experiencing homeless.
The next faithful step for Salt House and our community comes in the form of another partnership to address issues of homelessness in our area. After a season of intentional consideration and discernment, the community at Salt House said "yes" to selling a portion of our land to the city of Kirkland to be used for a permanent, 24-hour shelter for women and families experiencing homelessness. The land sale was completed in spring 2010. Construction began in 2019 and Kirkland Place for Families and Women was opened in August of 2020.

Be a part of our story...

Join us every Sunday as we gather to worship together a 10:00am