Indigenous Allyship

 

 

“It is absolutely incumbent on every follower of Christ to know the stories of injustice and pain that their closest neighbors continue to endure. And beyond just Christians, there is a responsibility for every person to know the story of the land they are privileged to call home.”

The Church Has Ignored the Grief of First Nation Peoples Too Long by Jennifer Singh

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation – 2021

Thursday September 30th, is the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. A day that honours the lost children and Survivors of residential schools, their families and communities. We know that many of you are finding ways to engage in this day of reflection, learning, mourning and committing to change. And as a community, we want to point out just two opportunities within our own local community to listen, learn and engage.

The Healing of the Seven Generations, an indigenous-led local community organization, is hosting a community walk to spread awareness of and reflect on the tragedies experienced by Indigenous peoples across Turtle Island as a result of the country’s former residential school system. The walk will begin at 10AM from 300 Frederick St in Kitchener and lead to Victoria Park’s Clock Tower where there will be a number of guest speakers and drumming to follow. All are welcome and encouraged to wear orange!

In the evening on the 30th at 7pm, we are partnering with UNA church in Kitchener to host an online screening of the documentary Trick or Treaty. A zoom link for the event was included in the community email on Tuesday this week. Please plan to join the zoom call at 7pm for a brief introduction. For those who wish to watch the film on their own (outside of the zoom call) a link will be provided at that time. We will then join back on the Zoom call at 8:45pm for a short time of discussion. Please reach out if you have any questions or have trouble finding the link. (melissa.burke@elevationwaterloo.org)

Resources to Educate

At the end of 2011, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada submitted a report on the
history, purpose, operation, and supervision of the residential school system, the effect and
consequences of the system, and its ongoing legacy. The publication of this report can be found here.

In 2015 the Truth and Reconciliation Commission released a call to action to redress the legacy of residential schools and advance the process of Canadian reconciliation. The publication of these 94 calls to action can be found here. Although all of these calls to action are incredibly important, some of the most applicable for our context are in the section titled “Church apologies and Reconciliation” (58-61).

A website has been formed to monitor the progress of the journey towards reconciliation, based on these 94 calls to action. You can follow along in this journey here.

There has been a National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls in Canada. You can find the Executive Summary of the Final Report of this Inquiry here.

The University of Alberta offers a free course on Indigenous History in Canada. This course has 12 lessons and can be completed at your own pace. You can find more information and register for this course here.

The First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada has created a guide to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada in a format that is written especially for children. You can access this guide here.