Day 2 – National Indigenous Sacred Circle

Sacred circle cross

Here is the report from the second day of the National Indigenous Sacred Circle. You can find day one’s report here.

Sacred circle cross
A cross set up as part of the Sacred Circle

Sacred Circle Daily Report — Day Two

Music and Prayers: The morning opened with music and prayers from the Indigenous Spiritual Ministry of Mishamikoweesh in Oji-Cree including prayers for the fires in the area.

Gospel Based Discipleship: Bishop Mark MacDonald explained the development of Gospel Based Discipleship. It has been especially successful in indigenous communities and in urban settings where the traditional form of church is foreign to people. Bishop Mark offered support to those that walk in this pledge of discipleship to care for people’s spiritual needs. He asked members to put the gospel in the center of their circles and put Jesus in the center of their hearts. The memory keepers felt that hearing about the history behind GBD was helpful. “It is a really important way to connect and talk about what people feel as opposed to the head approach.” In Acts we are told that where people meet, that is where the church is.”

PWRDF: Judith Moses and Will Postma explained the work of the Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund. They will be creating a new 5 year strategic plan and would like to have a greater emphasis on reconciliation and indigenous healing. There were many questions and comments from members expressing the numerous areas where help is required in indigenous communities. The memory keepers had much respect and appreciation for the work of PWRDF. “It might have been helpful to have some images of the work currently being done.” There is a need for a much more focused relationship addressing the many crises in indigenous communities.”

A Way Forward: Danielle Black and Aaron Sault presented the document, “A Confederacy of Indigenous Anglican Lands in Circle with the Primal Elements”. The PowerPoint presentation examined a way forward to an Indigenous Anglican Spiritual Ministry in a journey with the Anglican Church of Canada. The Diocese of the Artic sang and offered grace in Inuktitut before lunch.

Focus Groups: During the afternoon, members broke up into 6 focus groups based on areas of interest. They included the following topics. Opiod Crisis, Resource Extraction/Climate Change, Governance for Self-determination: Canon 22 and a Constitution, MMIW and G, Marriage Canon, Suicide Prevention

The memory keepers both attended the Suicide Prevention group and were impressed with the factual, inspiring and ground level presentation. “We have a major key to help in this crisis – faith and hope in Jesus. It is our responsibility to help.” “Yolanda Bird and Jeffrey Stanley with mentoring from The Rev. Norm Casey are doing really important and life giving work.” “The focus of traditional indigenous and Christian teachings are a powerful way of dealing with grief.”

God’s Vision of Globalization: The Rev. Malcolm Chun from the Diocese of Hawai’i discussed God’s vision of globalization, which was defined as the bringing of distant people closer together. He noted this was the dream of the United Nations and the dream of the Anglican Church of Canada and the dream of Sacred Circle. The memory keepers enjoyed the presentation. “It was refreshing to hear a talk on globalization from a divine perspective.” “I appreciated his enthusiasm.”

Episcopal Church Greetings: The Rev. Brad Hauff, Indigenous Minister of the Episcopal Church extended greetings from the Episcopal Church and Archbishop Michael Curry. He described his personal calling and the work of the Ethnic Ministries Department. The memory keepers had the following comments.