Healing & reconciliation


Bulletin back cover, May 22, 2016. Text by Vivian Ketchum

Last Sunday, May 22, was Healing & Reconciliation Sunday. This phrase describes the phase of relationship with our First Nations sisters and brothers in a time after the 94 calls to action  of the recently concluded Truth & Reconciliation Commission, led by esteemed justice and senator Murray Sinclair. It’s a phase that’s just beginning.

I was delighted to see on the back of our bulletin last week a reflection by our friend Vivian Ketchum. Vivian is a member of Place of Hope Presbyterian Church in Winnipeg, a First Nations woman with family roots in Kenora, Ont. She has many gifts, writing, photography and storytelling among them. Those who know Vivian view her as more than the sum of those gifts – perhaps one of her most dynamic traits is her relentless advocacy of underprivileged people of every description everywhere. When Vivian writes about sitting still, that’s a considered deliberate action for her. As it should be for all of us. Her reflection is brilliantly short and sweet. I’m including a screen capture of it her so that we can all have a chance to re-read it.

I’ll be visiting our friends at Winnipeg Inner City Missions, where Place of Hope Church is housed,  next week to help with some office work. I’m taking along one of the prayer shawls from our vibrant shawl ministry, a healing hug from Knox Acton as we step into this new phase of relationship with our First Nations brothers and sisters.


Bulletin front cover, May 22, 2016. Healing & Reconcilation Sunday.



Latest Pres Record column by Vivian Ketchum

Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 4.05.54 PMSeveral years ago youth mission teams went from Halton Hills to help with the work of Winnipeg Inner City Missions, which is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church in Canada. Knox Georgetown sent a team of teens in 2010 and Norval Presbyterian sent a team in 2012. The teams helped with the work of supporting the city’s inner city aboriginal community, and was a transforming eye-opener for local teens  (and adults) on the  difficulties, past and present, faced by Canada’s First Nations people. Teams became very attached to the Mission’s Executive Director, the Rev. Margaret Mullin, and Parish Nurse Susan Currie, elders Stella Blackbird and Audrey Bone, along with  other wonderful staff and folk connected to the organization.

Another person who became near and dear to the hearts of the teams is Vivian Ketchum. Vivian has been a key player in the truth and reconciliation work of the PCC. She is currently writing a monthly column for the Presbyterian Record. Vivian  writes powerfully and from the heart. She stares the truth boldly in the face. Her writings  are a blessing to those seeking to make the most of the truth and reconciliation process undergone in recent years by the Pres Church and this country.

Click HERE for Vivian’s February installment in the Pres Record.