Our church, First Mennonite, wants to tell you something about the land we live on…
the land where our church, our homes, our towns and cities and farms are.
We aren’t the first people to live here,
there were people here for thousands of years before we got here.
They are called indigenous people, and they still live here;
they have beautiful names: Anishinaabe, Haudenosauneee, Attawandaron.
Let’s say those names: Can you repeat after me? Anishinaabe. Haudenosauneee, Attawandaron.
We didn’t live up to the promises we made with them on how to share the land,
and it’s not been fair to them.
We have hurt the people with these beautiful names, the indigenous peoples.
We are trying to figure out how to make things right,
and to talk about it with them in ways that are helpful and not hurtful.
Jesus wants us to do this, and Jesus is going to help us do this.
We’re going to try hard; we want to live in peace with our neighbours,
the Anishinaabe, Haudenosauneee, Attawandaron peoples.
That’s why we do this land acknowledgement once a month to remind ourselves
to think about this, and figure out ways to do this.
[Note: We do a land acknowledgement once a month in our worship service–the language of that statement is carefully crafted, and also difficult for children to understand. I wrote this one as a way of communicating to children why we do this land acknowledgement every month.]