Thursday, September 21, 2006

Morning Prayers After First Snow Leave a Tingle at Indigenous Meeting

'God gives trust to indigenous people, who find gifts in gospel culture'

Karasjok has perhaps never received such a diversity of indigenous nations' representatives.

Some of them try to warm up in the hall of the cultural house of this Arctic Circle town, on a frisky morning after the first snow has fallen. An Australian Aboriginal woman steps behind the microphone and starts to pray. It's the first Morning Prayer of the multicultural conference.

"Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, be content with what you have; for He Himself has said." Hebrews 13:5, reads Rachelle McIvor introducing the interactive morning devotion and bible study. Interactive, because she explains, she is thinking with the help of the prayers written on the spot by the other participants.

She also emphasizes the importance of self-determination, which should not be controlled by money. "God trusts in us," she underlines, "otherwise we wouldn't have been given free will". Therefore indigenous people can find their own gifts through challenges and gospel culture. White, black, indigenous or aboriginal: there is a constant struggle in how we use these words, because humanity tends to say these with innuendo.

McIvor appeals to the indigenous communion, which has carried on independent of governmental policies, to believe in each other as God does, and to have more faith, because these are the pledges of surviving. She encourages the indigenous youth to hope and feel responsibility towards their community, as its future depends on them.

La prière du matin frisonne après la première neige

Rachelle McIvor, jeune femme aborigène, a ouvert la première journée de la conférence par un temps de prière et d'étude biblique. S'appuyant sur l'Épître aux Hébreux ("Ne vous livrez pas à l'amour de l'argent; contentez- vous de ce que vous avez.", Héb. 13,5) elle a insisté sur la liberté que Dieu a donné à l'Homme. "Dieu nous fait confiance, trouvons nos propres dons."

Elle a aussi appeler à une communion indigène qui, en-dehors des politiques gouvernementales, pousse à croire les uns dans les autres, comme Dieu le fait. Rappelant que le futur dépend d'eux, elle a conclu en encourageant les jeunes indigènes à espérer et à se sentir responsables vis-à-vis de leur communauté.

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