- The Catholic Worker -

The Catholic Worker is an international movement of grass-roots communities committed to direct action for justice.  A list of over 200 Catholic Worker houses can be found on the national Catholic Worker Directory.

The movement is non-hierarchical, with no headquarters or governing body.  Each house responds to the needs of the world in its own way, based on local needs, the interests and talents of the members, and the prompting of the Spirit.

At Dandelion House we explore what it looks like to take the core elements of the Catholic Worker – hospitality, nonviolent resistance, justice-focused journalism, community, and contemplative practice – and respond to the multi-faceted crises of today’s world. 


Why dandelion house?

Dandelions embody the resilience of life.  Often regarded as a weed, homeowners wage all manner of chemical and manual warfare against them, yet they inevitably re-emerge – on lawns, city sidewalks, and in wild meadows and fields. 

A dandelion is nutritious and healing – the entire plant, from flowers to leaves to roots, can be used for food and medicine.

And, finally, we love dandelions for the beauty and joy they bring in the springtime, and the playfulness of blowing on a tuft of dandelion once they’ve gone to seed.

We hope the house will be infused with the spirit of the dandelion – the spirit of resilience, healing, beauty, and play.


Meet the People

Fumi Tosu


Fumi is the founder of Dandelion House.  He joined the Catholic Worker movement in California, learning from Catholic Worker mentors in LA, Redwood City,  and San Jose before taking on a co-leadership role at the San Jose Catholic Worker (Casa de Clara) from 2013-2018.  He is a story-teller, educator, and seeker.  He also accompanies others on their journeys as a spiritual director and retreat leader.


Julian Washio-Collette


Julian was drawn to the Catholic Worker movement through his passions for community living and integrating contemplative prayer with action for social and ecological justice. He chose the name Julian after Julian of Norwich while in monastic training with the Camaldolese Benedictine monks of Big Sur, California, and is currently a Camaldolese Benedictine Oblate. He writes about adoption, trauma, and spirituality and can often be found unicycling on the Trolley Trail.  

Lisa Washio-Collette


Lisa and her husband Julian lived with Fumi at Casa de Clara Catholic Worker in San Jose, California, from 2015 to 2018. She has been deeply shaped by the commitment to peace and community of the Mennonite tradition, as well as by her attraction to contemplative prayer and monastic spirituality. She is a Camaldolese Benedictine Oblate and is passionate about exploring and uplifting the Divine Feminine in our world today. 

Board of Directors

Sharon Oba


Sharon grew up in Tokyo, Sydney, and New York, and has been living in the U.S. for over twenty years.  She has been friends with Fumi since high school.  Currently, Sharon works as a manufacturing engineer at Nike and is involved with organizing conversations around Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Nike.  Sharon first met the Catholic Worker community in San Jose, where she regularly cooked dinner for the house.  She would love to cook again when Dandelion House is ready and is excited to be part of this team!



Dave Gregory


Dave grew up going to the Catholic Worker houses in Manhattan because his father believed that the Worker was the most prophetically powerful expression of Catholicism in modern culture.  Dave works at De La Salle North Catholic High School in NE Portland, where he is a classroom teacher and instructional coach.  He holds a master’s in biblical studies, a doctorate in curriculum and instruction, and is most interested in the liberating power of theological education.  His wife, Sarah, and baby, Jack Ignatius, allow Dave to live with them in NE Portland.



Julia Brown


Julia was first introduced to the Catholic Worker during her second year as a Jesuit Volunteer at Sisters of the Road Cafe in Portland.  It was a life-changing community and soul-enriching experience.  Since then, she has visited and stayed connected to two Catholic Worker farms.  Most of her career in social work has centered around people experiencing houselessness, addiction, and HIV/AIDS.  She is honored to help Dandelion House bloom!

Rev. Michael Ellick


Michael is currently the Director of Public Engagement for the Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon but has also served as a parish minister, a monk, a community organizer, and a public finance analyst.  Though best known in the public square for faith-based movement building work (primarily the New Sanctuary Movement and Occupy Wall Street) he is first and foremost a meditation teacher and contemplative practitioner.  Raised in the old-growth rain-forests near the southern tip of the Salish Sea, Michael considers the forest his chief teacher and spiritual community. 



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