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Reflections from Program Participants

Reconciliation is everyone’s responsibility; all must unlearn the racist narrative of colonialism. All of these measures are good-intentioned enough, but as Saint John Paul II said in 1988, “a change of structures is linked to a change of hearts.”

Chandra BehrenzContemporary Effects of Colonization
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It is important to be mindful that First Nations people had an established relationship with the Creator God as they understood God to be well before European contact. Being respectful of Native Spirituality and implementing it where appropriate in Catholic practices is a good way to blend two cultures.

Chandra BehrenzIndigenous Settler Relationships
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All Medicine Wheels are tools for teaching people about their place in the universe and their relationship to all things created by the Sacred Mystery.

Marcelle MarionMy Progress Through the Gifts of the Medicine Wheel
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Métis Discipleship needs to be nurtured in the Church today. It involves recognizing their early martyrs and their uniqueness as a People of God.

Marcelle MarionMétis Discipleship
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I deeply believe that the first step towards reconciliation is the gift of freedom of passing through the different layers of things, that either Indigenous Canadians and non-Indigenous Canadians have learned from colonial society and (the) need to go back.

Sr. Marta PianoMy Medicine Wheel
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I am shocked and frankly embarrassed by how much I did not know about the treatment of Indigenous people through history. I assure you that I am not the only one. That is why this course is so vitally important.

Cheryl UnruhIPL Course 2 Reflection
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While I began this reflection with thoughts of frustration and anger toward those who prejudge and misjudge my own children, I now reflect on some of the Indigenous teachings that for all our flaws, differences and peculiarities, we are mutually important parts of Creation, coming from the Creator. We are all connected. This brings me peace.

Cheryl UnruhIPL Course1 Reflection
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With every reading, every video, every discussion that I participate in, I realize that the learning I have done up to this point has barely scratched the surface, and that there is so, so, so much more learning to do.

Darcie LichIPL Course 2 Reflection
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I am so very grateful for this opportunity to learn about the history, culture, and spirituality of my Indigenous friends and neighbours, but even more importantly, I am grateful for the opportunity to learn from and with them. This has been such an enriching experience.

Darcie LichIPL Course 1 Reflection
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In the west, I am thinking about my role as an usher/greeter in my parish. New knowledge helps me to gain a better understanding not only of my ancestors, but also a new respect for the overlap in traditional First Nations spirituality and Roman Catholicism. It is here I realize that faith was already deeply embedded in the First Nations culture well before the introduction of Christianity.

Chandra BehrenzReflections on the Medicine Wheel
Read More: Reflections on the Medicine Wheel