RIGHT RELATIONS

We are honoured to reside on the traditional lands of Indigenous peoples.  These lands are held as sacred by many peoples, including the nations of the Iyarhe Nakoda (Bearspaw, Chiniki and Goodstoney), Blackfoot Confederacy (Kainai, Piikani, Siksika), Tsuut’ina, Secwepemc, Ktunaxa, Dene, Mountain Cree, and Metis (Alberta Region 3).

The discoveries in the summer of 2021 at the Kamloops Residential School remind us of the ongoing, important work of Reconciliation.
This work begins with taking seriously the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission,
which include specific Calls to the Churches.   Included within these calls are four calls pertaining to gravesites at former IRS locations.

We focused on these calls in our Friday newsletters, from June 2021 to April 2022, to raise awareness of the work that is ours to do, and continue to engage in thoughtful communication and action with our Indigenous hosts on this land.   We are also accumulating books to include in an Indigenous Library at the Church (with the intention of these books being signed out and widely read throughout the congregation).  An annotated list of titles is here: https://ralphconnor.ca/indigenous-library/

To see the 1986 and 1998 Apologies issued by the United Church of Canada to Indigenous Persons, click here.

We remember with sorrow all children who died at Canada’s 139 Residential Schools, and all people and families traumatized by this system. As an Affirming Ministry of the United Church of Canada, on Treaty 7 lands, we recommit ourselves to love, justice and reconciliation.

In solemn remembrance of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and Two-Spirit persons, a “Red Dress Day” Commemorative Service was held on May 5, 2022 at Rundle Memorial United Church in Banff. 
The service was recorded, and has been posted here

 

Gloria Snow – Red Dress Day, Banff May 5 2022

We strive to live into right relations with our First Nations sisters and brothers.  We respect the apologies offered by the United Church of Canada to the Indigenous peoples of this land, and have held a number of workshops to help us take seriously the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). We acknowledge that each time we gather, whether we meet or Worship in Banff or Canmore, we do so on the traditional lands of the Stoney Nakoda and other signatories of Treaty 7, and celebrate the relationships that are growing as we seek reconciliation and friendship.

 

 

AFFIRMING VISION STATEMENT of Ralph Connor Memorial United Church, Canmore – a community of faith on the traditional lands of the Stoney Nakoda First Peoples:

We affirm Christ’s love and desire for justice, inclusion, and affirmation for all, and Christ’s identification with those who have been marginalized.

  • We strive to be a community of faith in which all persons are fully included in all aspects of our life and work. We strive to publicly and explicitly welcome, care for, and learn from all persons, regardless of ethnicity, gender, age, ability, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, social or economic circumstance.

We affirm the present RCMUC Mission Statement, which shapes the choices and priorities of this community of faith:

  • “Ralph Connor Memorial United Church’s Mission as a Church Community is:
  • to nurture the spiritual exploration and growth of all our members and adherents;
  • to be an intentionally inviting Christian community that seeks, welcomes and embraces new members;
  • to reach out and become an agent for social justice in our neighbourhood and in the global community”.

We affirm our need to connect and align with other communities, within and beyond our faith tradition, who desire to actively work for inclusion and justice.

  • We will continue to engage in study, education and dialogue through workshops, advocacy, events and broader partnerships as we continue our journey.

We understand that these commitments are essential for a thriving, healthy Affirming Ministry.

 

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