Calls To Action…
Of all the social/political issues that Canada has dealt with in my lifetime, the one that most certainly ranks as the most pernicious (as in long-suffering/long unresolved) and seemingly impossible to get a handle on, is that of the relationship between Canada’s first peoples and those of us whose life on this land has a much shorter history.
It goes without saying that as settlers or colonists (or whatever term you prefer) we are heirs to a history of treating Canada’s Indigenous people with behaviour that ranges from out-right hate & cultural genocide through to all sorts of unconsciously racist prejudices. I will confess that I myself left Regina just as the realities of all those years of trauma and social chaos were cresting and have not often found myself having to confront my own ignorances (in the true sense of that word) in my calls previous to now returning to Regina. “Conveniently” the issue has always been more in someone else’s neighbourhood than mine. In these last months however, I have found myself ready to engage in both education and action for a whole myriad of reasons.
Truthfully, for us to even begin to make a dint in the years of stuff that has done its best to alienate us from each other.. education is where we ALL have to begin – education that opens our eyes to the full ramifications of what history has left us to deal with.. AND education that helps us become more sensitive and compassionate.
With such education as a goal.. the Living Spirit Centre Clergy Group (MAP – Ministry At this Place) are planning a special Sunday of recognition for National Indigenous Peoples Day. June 23rd will begin with a joint LSC service at 9:30 that will welcome a special guest preacher (TBA) and incorporate some of the gifts of Indigenous Christian Spirituality. This will be followed by the offering of a BLANKET EXERCISE for anyone who wishes to participate or observe. (If you have never been part of a Blanket Exercise it is a very powerful experience – our youth all participated in the 2nd largest ever at the CLAY gathering last summer.) We will then round off the morning with a pot-luck lunch.
To be active in the healing process and committed to building relationships of compassion and trust among all people is the core of what we are called to be as disciples of Christ. And so I strongly encourage everyone to mark their calendars and make attending this Sunday a priority for you and your people/family. Guests are most welcome as always!!!
- Pastor Stewart Miller – May 16/19
(Also this coming summer the National ELCIC convention (here in Regina) will centre on the theme of “Journey Toward Reconciliation” as a reflection of our church’s commitment to the “Calls to Action” from the Truth & Reconciliation Report.)