Indigenous Reconciliation 

 

 

 

REFLECTIONS

“We now stand at a crucial time in the life of the church, and the history of Canada, when we can see the journey through. For more than thirty years, the United Church and Indigenous peoples have been on a journey towards mutuality, respect and equity. Towards reconciliation. Towards justice.” United Church of Canada Reconciliation and Indigenous Justice.

We, at Merging Waters United Church have decided to embark on a journey of learning and unlearning what it means to works towards reconciliation, justice and allyship.

 

Starting our worship services with a land acknowledgement that includes an educational component, has allowed our community to have a better understanding and glimpses of the harmful history and impact of colonization of the First Peoples that was never in our history books.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ACTIVITIES

In the fall of 2023, we participated in the Kairos Blanket Exercise led by Elder Tom Dearhouse and facilitator Pastor Lisa Byer-de Wever. Learning the history of the land is the first part of our unlearning and relearning.

 

Some of our members then embarked on watching “Bones of Crows”, a psychological drama told through the eyes of Cree Matriarch, Aline Spears, as she survives Canada's residential school system. Each episode was followed by a talking circles to unpack, process and map a way forward.

 

The next steps on our path will include a workshop on Land Acknowledgements, a visit and learning visit to Kahnawake and Kanesatake. Continuing to learn about the covenants that were made by the settlers and First Peoples of this area and our ongoing workshops on intercultural and anti-racism will also contribute to our learning path.

LINKS

 

Living Into Right Relations Nakonh:aka Region webpage 

 

The Respect & Kanoronhkwátshera intitiative brings together resources related to Indigenous justice initiatives in the Montreal / Quebec area.

 

 

Truth and reconciliation 

The General Council of the United Church of Canada has recognized the long history of the Church in colonization and assimilation of Indigenous Peoples. In 1986 the Church made its first formal, public apology for the harms done and pledged reconciliation. The apology and the path since are described on the UCC Apologies website.

 

 

 

 Calls to the Church: The Calls to the Church document articulates the Indigenous Church’s vision for the ongoing development of Indigenous Peoples’ mission and ministry and communities of faith within The United Church of Canada. It outlines pathways for the whole church to continue to walk in the Spirit of Christ toward justice, healing, and reconciliation.

 

 

United Nation’s Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

 

21 things you may not have known about the Indian Act 

 

Our Home on Native Land Interactive Global Map

 

KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives Indigenous Rights Program 

 

UCC Website repudiating the Doctrine of Discovery 

 

Bring the Children Home:  A program of the UCC to support Indigenous communities in their work on unmarked graves.