Happy First Nations Day!
Congratulations to Canada's First Nations on the longest day of year, the feast of the first fruits. What a welcome sight wild strawberries would be after a winter without fresh fruit. First Nations seem to be taking huge steps these days to address the wounds caused by centuries of colonization.
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission process in its final year is important, for example. Thousands of survivors told their stories--sometimes in the open, sometimes privately because the memories are so traumatic. They did their part. Now it's up to people of the dominant culture to acknowledge all that pain. Anyone with trauma in their family story knows how the echoes can ripple for generations. That's what many First Nations people are dealing with. Except it might be every family in a community affected, everyone struggling to get health at once.
The drum, the sweat lodge, the teachings of the elders, for some their Christian faith: many things help individuals and communities recover.
On Sunday, June 22, to celebrate First Nations Day, the Glen Rhodes community hears from the Rev. Maggie McLeod. She's a First Nations person from Saskatchewan (Peepeekisis FN, to be exact), and also a United Church minister. Currently she holds a position with the national church working with First Nation United Churches.
Many of us have only fleeting contact with First Nations. We need to hear often from people such as Ms. McLeod about building bonds of peace until all Canadians consider themselves treaty people.
Here's the schedule for Sunday. All welcome, of course! Hope to see you there.
10 o'clock - smudging with sage on the side lawn of the church
10:30 - worship service honouring the four colours and the four directions with
Rev. McLeod preaching