For many, last Monday – Columbus Day, is a day that celebrates the European discovery of the Americas. Too often it is forgotten that the land was neither empty nor undiscovered, and the bounty of resources and space upon which the American way of life is built came as a blessing to many, but at a great cost and tragedy for those who were already here – the Native Americans.
This Sunday, Oct. 18th, we open ourselves to the full story of colonization, the theology of Manifest Destiny, the taking of indigenous peoples’ lands, and the impact through the years which continues even today. We join together to find ways of justice, alleviation of suffering, and healing between white and Native peoples in this country and the native nations today.
In 2014, The 29th General Synod of the United Church of Christ approved a Resolution of Witness calling for the UCC to repudiate the Doctrine of Discovery, which authorized the genocide of native people & the theft of native lands (http://uccfiles.com/pdf/gs29minutes.pdf). In that Resolution we recognize the complicity of the Churches, including the UCC, in the perpetration of these injustices.
Join us, in the spirit of the still speaking God, in a new understanding of our relationship with God and with one another, especially our indigenous sisters and brothers.
I leave you with some quotes of wisdom:
Treat all people alike. Give them all the same law. Give them all an even chance to live and grow. All people were made by the same Great Spirit Chief. They are all brothers and sisters. The earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it. Chief Joseph (Nez Perce)
I had rather live one day and enjoy the privileges of citizenship to which I am entitled than live a thousand years and be denied them. Henry Berry Lowry (Lumbee)
There is one God looking down on us all. We are all the children of one God. The sun, the darkness, the winds are all listening to what we have to say. Geronimo (Apache)