Words are simply not sufficient for the sorrow and lament as we are reminded once again of the long history of system injustice and racism in Canada against Indigenous communities. While the media spotlights 215 children buried in an unmarked grave in Kamloops near a former residential boarding school, this is not a new story for Indigenous communities who have borne horrific and painful losses for generations. While flags are flying at half-mast across the country to express national mourning and show solidarity with families and communities most directly affected by these losses, we lament that it takes such events to wake up the general public, including our own church communities, to the truth told by Indigenous communities. We are reminded once again of the sad legacy of our society to minimize and push aside Indigenous people and their legitimate stories.
World Renew Canada appeals to all our supporters and citizens in Canada to stand in solidarity and support of Indigenous families who have been mourning for many generations for the loss of their children. We lament the history of tragedies of senseless killing, disease, starvation, forced relocation and cultural genocide of Indigenous people.
“When even one of us made in the beautiful image of God–which each indigenous child was so designed–is dehumanized and crushed, we all are less than God created us to be.”
We confess the history of neglect to listen and care for the people first living on the lands we now call Canada. We encourage all citizens to hold political leaders accountable for implementing the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Report, including investigating other residential schools across Canada where similar atrocities have happened.
Please join other churches and concerned members of the CRCNA in this time of lament and reflection. Please join every effort for addressing systemic racism in our churches, organizations and society. Please consider supporting World Renew’s work with your gifts for the programmes where we support Indigenous communities around the world. To assist you in a journey of greater understanding and care, here is a prayer as well as some other resources compiled by the CRCNA’s Canadian Indigenous Ministry Committee.
May God have mercy and heal this land for we are a broken people. When even one of us made in the beautiful image of God–which each indigenous child was so designed–is dehumanized and crushed, we all are less than God created us to be.
In Christ and his pursuit of justice and mercy,
World Renew Director, Canada