Aaniin-Hello in Ojibwe! I can't remember my first actual experience with Native American culture. I guess growing up in the St. Paul Public school system was probably my first time in the classrooms or pow wow events we attended.
Going to UMM was probably the most significant educational-cultural impact. UMM has roots of this unique culture as there was a Catholic Indian School before this campus. In fact, one can tell with the names around the college campus: Turtle Mountain Cafe (Student Center's cafeteria), Oyate Hall, etc... Also, the Cultural Native Indian American (UMM student organization) group sponsors an annual Pow-Wow each spring, which other area Indian reservations participate.
I've been to camps that has focus on reaching out to the Native American people with Morris Community Church, which I've been able to pull up some of the following resources down below. For example, I went to Hungry Horse-Glacier National Park in Montana in the summer of 2002, which I learned more of other tribes (eg. Black Feet) other than the familiar ones in Minnesota (Ojibwe, Dakotah, etc...).
I've talk to some Native American Indian Christians, which they share the importance of not condemning ancient cultural customs (eg. pow wows). They can be a "vessel" in relating-reaching to these people. One I met at the "Ethnic Harvest 03" conference told me we need to embrace the different ethnic cultural heritage:
Ethnic/Indigenous Music is a pwerful tool in reaching a group of people
-ex. drum at the boys and girls club in contrast to the popularity of rap
*Above is some text I got from a worksheet that got passed at a workshop on "Ethnic/Indigenous Music" by David Innerebner (Native American Indian Christian, who travels all over to speak on this topic) at "Ethnic Harvest 2003" in the Twin Cities.
-Otter Tail County Museum in Fergus Falls, MN
-Current News Coverage
Seeking answers in shooting rampage John McIntyre, Star Tribune March 22, 2005 REDLAKE0323
"The shooting ramapage by Jeff Weise, a 17-year-old student at Red Lake High School, on Monday killed his grandfather and his grandfather's wife and seven more people, at the school. "
-Red Lake Nation's History
F.B.I. says “foul play suspected” in Red Lake shooting death (12/01 Maquah, )
School Shooting Map
A Time Line of Recent Worldwide School Shootings, not just a problem in the U.S. (from infoplease.com)
Below is a shared experience that I thought was an awesome personal testimony from Wiconi's founder:
Background & History of First Nations Ministry Christianity -- The White Man' s Religion For many Native people, the gospel of Jesus Christ has not been good news, but bad. It is tragic that Christianity is seen as a threat to their cultural identity and traditional way of life. Jesus Christ Breaks Barriers As a Lakota born on South Dakota's Rosebud Reservation, Richard Twiss knows first-hand the hatred toward white people many Native people feel. He even went so far as to participate with the American Indian Movement (AIM) in the 1972 militant takeover and forced occupation of the offices of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, in Washington D.C. Today, however, Richard Twiss is a different person. "I am grateful to God that, like you, I have also experienced the inner transformation Jesus Christ produces in those who love him. As a Native man, I know the Spirit of God can break through the strongest lies that still keep our people separated from Christ." Challenges In the midst of the rich heritage and potential for First Nations people, there exist centuries-old obstacles and challenges. Less than 5% of Native people have a vital relationship with Christ. Many of our people suffer an alcoholism rate 10 times that of all other ethnic groups in the U.S. combined, teen suicide six times the national average, highest rates of unemployment in the land, severe economic hardships, and an average life expectancy for Native men of 47.
Broken Walls: Sing to the Mountains
"Brucko", by Bruce Olson
I had the privilege to read this for a missions class thay my local church held each Sunday morning before church service one year when I was still in college (1999?)
Pocahontas: The True Story of an American Hero and Her Christian Faith
Andy Holmes,James Conaway / Hardcover / Ballantine Books, Inc. /
MOVIES: Wounded Knee, Squanto, Dances with Wolves, Runner-Native American, Smoke Signals