Dear Friends in Christ:
This Sunday is National Indigenous Peoples Day.
There is so much that could be said on this topic, and I am looking forward to saying some of it in my sermon from St. James Cathedral this week. I hope you will join me then via livestream (link to Cathedral livestream).
For today, I simply want to say simply this:
I acknowledge that the Diocese of Toronto is situated on the lands of the Anishnawbe Three Fires Confederacy, the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, and the Wendat Nation.
I acknowledge the sovereign leadership of our local First Nations, Curve Lake First Nation, the Chippewas of Rama First Nation, Alderville First Nation, Hiawatha First Nation, Chippewas of Georgina Island, the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, and the Mississaugas of Scugog Island.
I recognize and deeply appreciate the ongoing leadership of these Nations, as well as the Métis, Inuit, and other Indigenous peoples, who continue to strengthen our beloved community and Church.
As a settler, I recognize that the contributions of Indigenous peoples must be supported by our collective commitment to enfleshing the promises made in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, repenting from the sins of colonialism.
I commit our Diocese to upholding this work through ongoing efforts in education and relationship-building in our parishes, and in supporting our Coordinator of Indigenous Ministries and Reconciliation Animator, the Rev. Leigh Kern, and the work of the Toronto Urban Native Ministry.
Yours in Christ,
The Rt. Rev. Andrew Asbil
Bishop of Toronto