Wednesday, January 16, 2013

John Bird Catches Up

Sent to all on The United Church of Canada's Living Into Right Relations email list. Please circulate as widely as you can.

Hello again Friends:

Having been under the weather during the weekend and beginning of this week, I now (no surprise) find a big backlog in material I want to share with you. So here's a round-up of things I have missed sending out. Sorry to dump so much at once; as always, feel free to pick and choose what you wish to read/watch.

A link to a National Film Board film by well-known Aboriginal filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin about Attawapiskat. It is called The People of The Kattawapiskak River and is apparently only available online until Friday, so if you wish to watch it, you'll have to hurry:

A blog from The United Church of Canada Moderator Gary Patterson, written on the morning of the Jan. 11 meeting between Prime Minister Stephen Harper and First Nations leaders:

A public message from Assembly of First Nations national Chief Shawn Atleo, after the Jan. 11 meeting:

We have wondered ourselves, and have had others ask us, where is the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in all these events around Idle No More and Chief Spence's spiritual fast? My colleague, Cecile Fausak, just found this statement on the TRC website, which I share below, along with a Winnipeg Free Press article that says Chief TRC Commissioner Justice Murray Sinclair has asked Chief Spence to end her fast (in a facebook statement, apparently):,%20AFN.pdf

An article by J.R. Miller in the Ottawa Citizen, explaining some of how and why First Nations view the role of the Governor-General and the Crown differently than settler Canadians do:

A letter from World Council of Churches General Secretary Olav Fykse Tveit to Prime Minister Harper. When Olav visited Canada last March, he participated in an ecumenical gathering with national Aboriginal Anglican Bishop Mark Macdonald, Andrew Wesley, and Truth and Reconciliation Commissioner Wilton Littlechild at Toronto Council Fire. During the event and afterwards, he expressed how important it was that WCC continue to be in solidarity with Indigenous peoples.

Article from the Globe and Mail by Anishnaabe writer Hayden King talking about the diversity among First Nations:

Reflections by Anishnaabe writer Leanne Simpson on the meaning of Chief (Ogichidaakwe ) Spence's fast:

We have so much to learn as we struggle to decolonize ourselves.

Blessings to all,

John Bird, Program Coordinator
Aboriginal Justice and Right Relations
United Church of Canada

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