TRR News: The Light is Returning

By Paula Palmer

Solstice Greetings! The Light is Returning

On this Winter Solstice, it is wonderful to celebrate the returning light! For ancient and contemporary Indigenous peoples alike, this astronomical turning from darkness toward light is a time of ceremony and celebration. Indigenous elders counsel that this is time for thanksgiving, reflection, and story-telling. The Solstice unites all the peoples of the world in wonder and gratitude for the cosmic dance of the Sun and the Earth, and their gift of life to us all.

This year, one of darkness of many kinds, the Solstice brings rays of hope for an end to the pandemic and the dawn of a more responsible, responsive, and compassionate administration. The best news in Indian Country is Joe Biden’s nomination of Representative Deb Haaland for Secretary of the Interior. For 170 years, since Interior Secretary Alexander H. H. Stuart set out to “civilize or exterminate” the Indigenous peoples, the tribes have suffered enormous injustices. This year we saw how their chronic mistreatment made them tragically vulnerable to Covid-19. Representative Haaland will bring the voices of Indigenous peoples into the Cabinet for the first time ever, and we hope her progressive policies on all environmental issues will bring healing to the land.

Please support TRR with an end-of-year donation

We are grateful to the growing numbers of trained TRR workshop facilitators and tech team members who will be carrying our programs far and wide next year via Zoom. And we are grateful to all of you who participate in our programs, recommend them to others, and support them with your donations. Please consider making a tax-deductible end-of-year gift online here (select Toward Right Relationship) or by check to: Friends Peace Teams-TRR, 1001 Park Ave., St. Louis MO 63104. Thank you!

Recommended Resources: Excellent Opportunities for Learning

The Pendle Hill webinars, co-sponsored by TRR and featuring TRR workshop facilitators Jerilyn DeCoteau (Turtle Mountain Chippewa) and Elicia Goodsolder (Dine/Spirit Lake Dakota), presented in July-October, are now posted online. Learn from Indigenous speakers about tribal-government relations in Canada and the U.S, the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, cultural appropriation, how to be an ally, Indigenous programs for healing from multi-generational trauma, and more.

The National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition has posted its 3-part webinar, “Truth in History: Examining Indian Boarding Schools in California” on its youtube channel.

Dawnland Signals Radio Show on weru.org are broadcast on third Thursdays of the month at 5 pm Eastern time. These programs feature Indigenous leaders in New England speaking about critical issues, working for change.

Wishing you the blessings of love and peace this holiday season, and our best wishes to you in the coming year.
Paula Palmer and Jerilyn DeCoteau