Re: Chaplains Corner
Today is Native American Day, American Indian Day Or Indigenous Peoples Day. Starting in 1916, there have been several state and national efforts to designate one day to recognize the contributions made by the first inhabitants of North America. At this point in history, Tennessee has designated the the fourth Friday in September as American Indian Day. California has this day as Native American Day, and finally in 2007 the Fed. Named this day as Native American Day as well.
Some state and local areas celebrate this day on Columbus Day, as a sort of protest against recognizing Columbus while ignoring the people that were here before he arrived. Actually, this makes sense to me. I was 19 years old when I first sampled Pizza. I was in Florida during the Cuban Missile crisis in 1962, and a small Navy club there served it. Would it be right for me to declare that date to be “Pizza discovery day?” That was MY first, but Pizza existed long before that! But we now have a national Native American Day separate from Columbus day, so I guess you could say that both sides won.
We need to recognize that by the time we Europeans arrived here this continent had been completely settled from Atlantic to Pacific, from the Gulf of Mexico to the northern arctic regions, and the people who had settled it had a quite advanced civilization in place which our ancestors, for the most part, destroyed. They gave us help in many areas which made it possible for us to settle here, and we repaid them by hundreds of years of disease mistreatment, degradation, extermination, and genocide. We took their land, their heritage and their lives.
And when did we, as a nation, set aside a national day to recognize these people?
Lord, forgive us for our treatment of these people.
Bless them, father, and strengthen them as they work to regain and preserve the rich cultural heritage which we took from them.
And help us, Lord, to continue to work together toward this end, which will be of great benefit to all of us living here.
May God bless each one of you, guys -
Christ told me to arm myself. If you want me disarmed - - Molon Labe.