In 2015, the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission concluded its investigation and issued its report and findings about the experiences of Native people in the Maine child welfare system.
The REACH community is reflecting on and celebrating the work of the Commission and what has occurred since the Commission delivered its recommendations. We are considering how these reflections fuel our current work and the next steps we take toward truth, healing, and change.
To support you joining us in these celebrations, reflections, considerations, and action planning, REACH’s Decolonizing Faith project has developed some resources to share with you. To learn more about the Decolonizing Faith project, visit their web page: Decolonizing Faith
Day of Prayer, Reflection, and Meditation
We call on people and communities of faith to pause on this day in gratitude for all who told their stories, for the Commission and its staff who gathered them with care, and for people across this territory who honor their stories by committing themselves to learning and promoting change.
This prayer, originally offered by Rev. Dr. Robert Grove-Markwood, then President of Bangor Theological Seminary on February 12, 2013 for the Seating of the Commission has been revised by N. White and P. Phillips-Doyle in 2020 so that it honors and celebrates the work that has been done since that seating ceremony.
You may choose to lift up this prayer on June 14, the fifth year anniversary of the conclusion of the Commissions work. Five year Celebration of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission
That same prayer was recorded by the five Commissioners and two founders of REACH and the Commission. Please view it here: https://youtu.be/vbfT2cosPsY
Maggie Edmondson, pastor of Winthrop Center Friends Church (Quaker) and member of REACH’s Decolonizing Faith project, shares another prayer that individuals or faith communities may lift up during this pandemic and on the journey of truth, healing, and change. Decolonizing Faith During the Pandemic
Rabbi Erica Asch, of Temple Beth El in Augusta, offered this prayer on Friday, June 12, 2020 on the occasion of the anniversary of the report of the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Prayer by Rabbi Erica Asch
Celebrating Truth, Healing, and Change
We know that faith communities across this territory are using online technology to gather in celebration and in worship. Members of REACH’s Decolonizing Faith project are producing recorded music, prayer, and reflections that guide our work to share with faith communities to decolonize and restore our world.
You can find this recording here: https://youtu.be/TI_U8xeg6PELINK