Native American Ministry Council
The Native American Ministry Council of Christ Church Cathedral has been active since 1984, as the result of a bequest from Nina F. Lansley. The Council’s early work included support for social work with the poor and elderly in the backcountry of the Navajo reservation and summer mission trips to Good Shepherd Mission in Fort Defiance, Arizona.
In 2010, the mission was broadened to include:
- Provide hands-on outreach by witnessing for, and building awareness of, the contemporary needs, values, and traditions of Native American cultures in the US and Canada.
- Contribute to the education and theological development of leadership within Native American communities.
- Support initiatives to empower Native American societies and ministries related to life needs, cultural sustainability, and spiritual growth within Native American values.
Starting in 2011, the Native American Ministry Council has conducted an annual workshop and Sunday service to celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day. By honoring the customs, traditions and developing a greater understanding of the impact of the history of the Doctrine of Discovery on present day Native Americans we inform our congregation and the larger community we serve. Native American leadership has been integral to these events. This year’s Native American Weekend will focus on the Care of Creation and the impact of governmental policies on our planet.
The Council is active with the Economic Development Corporation (EDC) of the Episcopal Church in Navajoland and helps underwrite its activities through direct donations and fundraising by selling Shima soaps, honey and blue corn meal that are produced by the enterprises of EDC.
Some of our other initiatives and activities are included below.
- Collaborate with other agencies in providing support to the needy on reservations.
- Involve Cathedral and Native American youth and adults in activities, such as, mission trips, interchanges and youth gatherings.
- Build awareness in the city of Native American issues, problems and opportunities.
- Collaborate and partner with other institutions, e.g., the Episcopal Indigenous Ministry, Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition, Native Americans in Philanthropy, the Miami Valley Council of Native Americans and the Greater Cincinnati Native American Coalition.
Education and Leadership Development
- Support lay and seminary theological education through grants to Navajoland Area Mission, Department of Indian Works of the Diocese of Minnesota and the Bishops Native Collaborative.
- Explore and act on scholarship needs on reservations and community colleges that lead to service to the church
- Contribute to scholarship needs through organizations, e.g., Supported Diocese, Episcopal Youth Events, United Nations Women’s Conference and education activities of the Greater Cincinnati Native American Collaborative.
- Promote Native American childhood education through adopt-a-school activities.
Native American Empowerment Initiatives Working Group
- Enable grassroots leadership within the Episcopal Church community, e.g., Anglican Indigenous Women’s Network.
- Provide Native American empowerment grants for environmental sustainability, arts and culture.
- Collaborate with other Episcopal congregations and Diocese on empowerment initiatives and projects that have the promise of lifting persons from poverty.
- Support initiatives related to environment, drug and alcohol addiction, and youth.