End of August, End of the World

30 Aug

For most of us, the end of August spells the end of summer. A hundred years ago, it looked like the end of the world.

So begins historian James Bratt’s reminders and reflections on 100 years since World War I, August in particular. You may read his entire post at The Twelve here.



27 Aug

Bill John Baker, principal chief of the Cherokee Nation, announces a new book published by the Cherokee Nation. You can read about it here.

Omaha tribe works to save historic Walthill hospital built by first Native American doctor

26 Aug

Susan LaFlesche Picotte Memorial Hospital

Dolly A. Butz has a report in the Sioux City Journal about efforts to fundraise and restore a historical hospital on the Omaha Reservation in Walthill, NE. Dr. Susan LaFlesche Picotte, a Presbyterian, built it in 1912. You can read more about it all here.

Also, see my earlier post on Susan LaFlesche Picotte.

Denominations repent for Native American land grabs

23 Aug

WOODSTOCK, Ill. (RNS) — “You cannot understand our history as a country until you understand the history of the church.”

That’s how Mark Charles — a Navajo pastor, speaker and author — began his presentation to a room full of missionaries in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, gathered this summer for their annual meeting.

He was laying out the origins of the Doctrine of Discovery, the idea first expressed in a series of 15th-century papal edicts and, later, royal charters and court rulings, that justifies the discovery and domination by European Christians of lands already inhabited by indigenous peoples.

In recent years, a number of mainline Protestant Christian denominations have passed resolutions repudiating the Doctrine of Discovery. Now they’re considering how to act on those denunciations.

So begins Emily McFarlan Miller’s report at Religion News Service. My friend Mark Charles is featured. You may read the entire story here.

Libraries and Archives: A Humanities Take on Discovery

22 Aug

maughan library

Studying libraries and archives historically as knowledge producers? Yes, says historian Karin Wulf. Read her concise piece at the Scholarly Kitchen here.

Sainthood for Black Elk?

22 Aug

Nicholas Black Elk, left, with daughter Lucy Black Elk and wife, Anna Brings White, photographed in their home in Manderson, S.D., circa 1910. Black Elk wears a suit, his wife wears a long dress decorated with elk’s teeth and a hair pipe necklace. Photo courtesy of Denver Public Library/Creative Commons

(RNS) — The Catholic Church could get its second Native American saint if a Vatican research trip to South Dakota this month leads to confirmation of two miracles performed by Nicholas Black Elk, a Lakota Sioux medicine man born in the Civil War era.

So begins a Religion News Service report by Kirk Petersen. You may read the entire report here.

Where to Find God

11 Aug

Northwest Iowa Center for Regional Studies

I grew up in Rapid City, South Dakota, near the edge of the Black Hills. Just behind my home was a church building that housed a number of different congregations over the years – a white evangelical church, a Native Christian church, a Lutheran church, and now, the last I checked, an Orthodox church.

As I grew up, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit met me in conversations with my parents, in an Evangelical Free basement after Awana, during an Assemblies of God worship service, and at youth group meetings at Hope Christian Reformed Church. While the Reformed tradition has a hold on me, these other traditions (and more) also play a role in how I see God at work.

So begins Northwestern College alum Keith Starkenburg’s reflections on “place” and the sacred. You may read his entire piece at The Twelve here.

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