Pentecost -- Ordinary Time -- Prayer

Sacred land, Sacred Lives:

Prayer for Indigenous Peoples’ Day

 

God, the Holy Spirit, we come to you:

            strengthen us as we journey through this life.

 

We of the Mandan and Hidatsa tribes have, through time,

            acknowledged the sacredness of the earth.

 

We acknowledge the earth in prayer in all the directions of the earth:

            To the north. To the south. To the east. To the west.

 

The sacredness of all the plants and those we harvest

            are treated as living beings.

 

Our grandfather river is sacred to us

            and we benefit from and respect our river.

 

Our ancestors taught us to respect the earth

            and use its gifts with care.

 

We are saddened by those who exploit

            the resources of the earth only for profit.

 

Our river was destroyed, our land was stolen

            and we know the promise that our government

            would leave us on the land we loved

            “as long as the grass shall grow”

                        was a lie,

            as were the government’s promises to all native people.

 

Although we seem helpless as this exploitation continues

            we continue to use our influence

            to protect the small portion of the earth

            which has been our home for centuries.

 

We ask that the Spirit give us the strength and grace

            to continue to protect our land and our life.

 

 

 

Sacred Land, Sacred Lives: Prayer for Indigenous Peoples’ Day was written by Reba Walker of the Mandan and Hidatsa Tribe.  Ms. Walker is a member of Independence Congregational Church located on the Fort Berthold Reservation;  Northern Plains Conference, UCC.

Copyright 2009 Local Church Ministries, Congregational Vitality and Discipleship Ministry Team, United Church of Christ, 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH  44115-1100.  Permission granted to reproduce or adapt this material for use in services of worship or church education.  All publishing rights reserved.

 

 

 

 

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Rev. Susan A. Blain
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