One tribe in North America has told this story for centuries: when people “pale as birch” crossed the great water in large canoes, they brought with them “The Black Book.” However, the bringers of the physical Book could not have known what it would mean and look like to be Native and a follower of Jesus.
Today Native Americans—with many unique languages, many unique cultures—honor their heritage, and live as Jesus-followers, led by a rotation of primarily Native American pastors. Most Americans today recognize that the history following the arrival of the large canoes bore little resemblance to the one all Christians identify as Creator. That’s why the people of The United Methodist Church, Native and non-Native, are creating a new history. Through Native American Ministries Sunday, we’re able to equip and empower Native American pastors, congregations and seminary students to do what only they can do: authentically worship and serve Jesus.
As a member of The United Methodist Church, your gift, on this day, equips Native congregations—like New York’s Onondaga Nation UMC and Nebraska’s Native American Sacred Winds congregation—to worship and serve as only they can. This work, and hundreds of other ministries, are possible because you give.
When you support Native American Ministries Sunday, you equip seminary students who will honor and celebrate Native American culture in their ministries. And you empower congregations that are finding fresh new ways to minister to their communities with the love of Christ. Dr. Richard Twiss, a member of the Sicangu Lakota Oyate from the Rosebud Sioux Reservation in South Dakota, asked: “Will we be allowed to develop new ways of doing church that honor God’s purposes for the creative expression of our cultures? Will new ministry partnerships and coalitions form? Will you help be a part of this wonderful process of reconciliation, restoration and release?”
Say yes. Use the provided envelope on April 15th, mark “Native American” on your check or envelope, or use Easy Tithe to donate to this special offering.