The Image Above:
THE BENTWOOD BOX: CARVED BY COAST SALISH ARTIST LUKE MARSTON, THE TRC BENTWOOD BOX IS A LASTING TRIBUTE TO ALL INDIAN RESIDENTIAL SCHOOL SURVIVORS. THE BOX TRAVELLED WITH THE TRC TO ALL OF ITS OFFICIAL EVENTS.
This Saturday, April 27th, a group of people will be gathering in our church hall to journey through what is called "The Blanket Exercise". This is an experiential learning tool to help us understand the journey our Indigenous sisters and brothers have taken, through the centuries, on this land we now call Canada. Thank you to our own Truth and Reconciliation Group for the work they have done and continue to do - and for bringing this experience into our community.
Our soon to be retiring Primate, Fred Hiltz, has worked tirelessly to keep the pathways of Reconciliation and Healing front and centre for the Anglican Church of Canada. Many of us are very grateful for his leadership in this way.
Recently he wrote:
Years before there was a Residential Schools Settlement Agreement, there was the Healing Fund. Long after the legal requirements of that agreement have been met, there will be a Healing Fund. We are in, as I and others have said so often, 'for the long haul'.
The Healing Fund of which he speaks is the Anglican Healing Fund. Some of you may have received a letter from the campaign called "Giving with Grace". If you would like to contribute to this fund now or in the future, please visit this link for more information:
In the meantime, let us support our own local group as they continue to guide our parish in the ways of reconciliation.
Let me conclude with the prayer Primate Fred Hiltz invites us all to pray.
Remembering the Children Prayer
God of our Ancestors, who holds the spirits of our grandmothers and grandfathers and the spirits of our grandchildren:
Remembering the Children, we now pledge ourselves to speak the Truth, and with our hearts and our souls to act upon the Truth we have heard of the injustices lived, of the sufferings inflicted, of the tears cried, of the misguided intentions imposed, and of the power of prejudice and racism which were allowed to smother the sounds and laughter of the forgotten children.
Hear our cries of lament for what was allowed to happen, and for what will never be. In speaking and hearing and acting upon the Truth may we as individuals and as a nation meet the hope of a new beginning.
Great Creator God, who desires that all creation live in harmony and peace:
Remembering the Children we dare to dream of a Path of Reconciliation where apology from the heart leads to healing of the heart and the chance of restoring the circle, where justice walks with all, where respect leads to true partnership, where the power to change comes from each heart. Hear our prayer of hope, and guide this country of Canada on a new and different path. Amen