Hello everyone on this “can- you- believe –it- is the last day of August?”!
I along with 33 others are processing the last intense 4 days spent at the Anishnabe Spiritual Centre at Espanola discovering how the Doctrine of Discovery is operative in our lives and in the United Church, and beginning to develop resources that might help others to do likewise. It bore much fruit – there were many commitments made to continue the journey of faith to decolonize. So watch for various education and worship resources and ways to build right relations to unfold over the next 3 years. You could take a look at the facebook page to catch some glimpses of the workshop, as Sara Stratton, my new colleague has taken up her position as of August 10 and is now posting! Our facilitators, Cynthia Wesley-Esquimault, Peter Noteboom, Shallen Murray, and Natalie Abdou were terrific.
BLOG ON THE ROLLING JUSTICE BUS IN BC
Read all about the experiences of a group travelling Aug. 24-31 through BC from Vancouver to Fort St. John, and encountering people in places where injustice is happening and requiring take actions in solidarity, particularly with indigenous peoples. On Sunday evening, in Kamloops, they were taking part in a conversation with Indigenous leader Arthur Manuel, former Chief of the Neskonlith Band in British Columbia and one of the most forceful advocates for Aboriginal title and rights in Canada.
‘LIVING THE 8TH FIRE’ WORKSHOP SERIES
Based on CBC’s 8th Fire series, 7 group sessions learning to walk the road of reconciliation with Indigenous neighbours, prepared by the Christian Reformed Centre for Public Dialogue Full facilitator’s guide can be downloaded at:
PROJECT OF HEART: EDUCATION FOR RECONCILIATION
The BC Teachers Federation has just released an excellent eBook “Project of Heart: Illuminating the hidden history of Indian residential schools in BC.” It is intended to be an interactive resource leading educators from the story to the ‘back story’ utilizing links on each page to offer related resources. Throughout this book you will find Project of Heart tiles with an ‘aura’ which indicates that this is a link. Click on each of these tiles to find additional resources including films, videos, documents, articles, activities and more. Even though the illustrations are from BC, most of the main content is useful in any Canadian classroom. Download here: http://www.bctf.ca/HiddenHistory/
On page 35, past ANCC Leading Elder Lorna Standingready is pictured in the Rideau Hall “Heart Garden” (bottom left)
CHRISTIAN PEACEMAKERS TEAM at GRASSY NARROWS
Alllan Reeve wrote a series of blog posts based on participation in an international delegation to Grassy Narrows with a Christian Peacemaker’s Team. I particularly appreciated the one entitled “Blinded by Privilege” – the question Larry Morrisette posed to the group is “what privileges are you prepared to risk and lose in order to be a part of the de-colonized solution?”
FIRST NATIONS CHALLENGING FINANCIAL TRANSPARENCY ACT – BILL C-27
In Federal Court last week, Onion Lake Cree Nation supported by Thunderchild, Ochapowace, Athabasca Chipewyan and Sawridge First Nations have requested a stay on Minister Valcourt’s motion that seeks to force compliance to implement the First Nations Financial Transparency Act (FNFTA) – it requires the First Nations to publish their Consolidated Financial Audits. “The Minister is imposing this legislation on First Nations even though its constitutionality is in question before the courts. “ Bill Erasmus, Dene National Chief, spoke in court in support of this stay as well: “The most compelling information shared in court was that monies First Nations receive is not from taxpayer’s – they are “Indian monies” allocated by Treasury Board dating back to Confederation. The Federal government has a legal obligation under Treaty to provide these monies to us”.
Reconciliation and Indigenous Justice Animator
General Council Office: Committee on Indigenous Justice and Residential Schools
780-676-0562 (office cell)
780-675-7753 (Athabasca, AB home office)