Resources: August 2019~Indigenous Peoples Day

downloadable PDF:  Women of Faith Resources August 2019

August Quotes

by Margaret Felice in A Book of Grace-filled Days

“From time to time, a flash illuminates our world and helps us see things as they truly are: gifts of God, full of grace.”  (p. 248)

“Our desire for communion says a lot about us, but it says even more about God.”  (p. 251)

“Every person is meant to further the mission of love and justice, and we are each given a particular tool kit with which to do so.”  (p. 253)

Featured Day:  August 9 – World Indigenous Peoples Day

World Day Indigenous Peoples Day, an annual event, will be held on August 9, 2019.  It is celebrated around the world and marks the date of the inaugural session of the United Nations visitor’s Working Group on Indigenous Populations at the United Nations in 1982.

This year’s theme is Indigenous Languages and will focus on the current situation of indigenous languages around the world.  The goal focuses on highlighting a need to revitalize, preserve, and promote indigenous languages.  By so doing, good practices will be shared through interactive and innovative initiatives.  Videos and other creative initiatives on indigenous languages will be presented lobby.

It may interest you to know that the 2019 International Day observance will take place on Friday, August 9th from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm in the ECOSOC Chamber at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

For Additional Information on Indigenous Peoples from

Indigenous Languages

Indigenous Languages Factsheet

Lectio Divina:  Scripture and prayer for meditating

Read the following selection a first time.  What word or words call out to you?  Read the selection a second time.  Ask the words or words calling to you : “What is it you want to say to me today?”

Quotes Calling us to Prayer:

“All things share the same breath: the beast, the tree, the man, the air share their spirit with all the life they support.” Chief Seattle

“Great Spirit, wherever I go today, let me leave heart prints.” Native American quote

“You yourself are desperately needed to save the soul of the world. Did you think you were put here for something less?” Arvol Looking Horse

A Prayer of Indigenous People, Refugees, Immigrants and Pilgrims by Mark Charles

Triune God,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
we come before you as many parts of a single body,
people drawn from every tribe,
every nation, every language;
some indigenous—peoples of the land;
some refugees, immigrants, pilgrims—people on the move;
some hosts, some guests, some both hosts and guests;
all of us searching for an eternal place where we can belong.

Creator, forgive us.
The earth is yours and everything that is in it.
But we forget.
In our arrogance we think we own it.
In our greed we think we can steal it.
In our ignorance we worship it.
In our thoughtlessness we destroy it.

We forget that you created the earth to bring praise and joy to you.
That you gave it as a gift,
for us to steward,
for us to enjoy,
for us to see more clearly your beauty and your majesty.

Jesus, save us.
We wait for your kingdom.
We long for your throne.
We hunger for your reconciliation,
for that day where people from every tribe and every tongue
will gather around you and sing your praises.

Holy Spirit, teach us.
Help us to remember
that the body is made up of many parts,
each one unique and every one necessary.
Teach us to embrace the discomfort that comes from our diversity
and to celebrate the fact that we are unified, not through our sameness,
but through the blood of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Triune God, we love you.
Your creation is beautiful.
Your salvation is merciful.
And your wisdom is beyond compare.

We pray all this in Jesus’s name.

For Spiritual Reading

Toward the Integrated Protection of Language and Knowledge as a Part of Indigenous Peoples’ Cultural Heritage: This article, taken from the December 2000 Cultural Survival Quarterly Magazine, focuses on links between biological, cultural, and linguistic diversity. It also presents how cultural and linguistic rights are human rights.

Being Indigenous in the 21st Century: This article is taken from the March 2009 Cultural Peoples. Although there are distinct differences in these cultures, they share common values in their understanding that their lives are deeply connected from our natural world.

Audio Divina:  Music accompanied by images

Native American Music and Nature Sounds – Flute, Forest and River – Meditation Nature Music: This Native American selection was published on YouTube on Jan 24, 2017. Enjoy the Native American music flute and relaxing nature sounds. It is easy listening for meditation, relaxation, or perhaps even while you work. Flute songs and drums are combined with nature forest sounds.

Relaxing Aboriginal Australian Didgeridoo Music: Published on August 16, 2018 by Music All Over the World. The didgeridoo is a wind instrument made from hollow wood. The first didgeridoos, played by aboriginal peoples in northern Australia an estimated 40,000 years ago, were made from fallen eucalyptus branches that had been naturally hollowed out by termites. It is also known that the Mayan people of Central America had a similar instrument made of yucca or agave and today referred to as “la trompeta maya” (the Mayan trumpet).  For additional information, go to: Didgeridoo History.

The Gamba – An astonishing Afro-Indigenous music was published on YouTube on January 10, 2018.  Gamba is African music brought to Amazonia.  It is a mix of Indian songs and missionary hymns.  The group, Gamba, made pilgrimages along the Amazon to visit isolated communities. In 2010, the Brazilian government protected this little known aspect of Brazilian culture by adding Gamba to its heritage list. As we listen, we can appreciate not only the music but also the missionary efforts of this group.

Enjoy a few videos of indigenous dancing:

World’s Best Native Hoop Dancers

Australian Aboriginal Crane Dance

Miss World 2018 | Dances of the World

Visio Divina: Art for Prayer and Meditation

“Visual images are another doorway to sacred awareness. They can touch into our desire to grow in intimacy with God. So, we encourage one another to let ourselves be touched by the colors, shapes, figures and symbols that capture our attention most as we are praying. While gazing at an image ~ a painting, a photo, an icon, a sculpture, a piece of pottery … something may leap out at us, calling our attention to something of God just waiting to reveal itself to us.”

(Ideas inspired by Christine Valters Paintner and Betsey Beckman in their book, Awakening the Creative Spirit: Bringing the Arts to Spiritual Direction.  See also Abbey of the Arts.)

Let this image speak to you of diversity. Marvel at the colors, the facial expressions, and the communion of this group of women. Pray with and for unity in diversity in our world and in our country; in your state and your city.

What do the symbols on this “Indigenous World” represent to you: the sun, the paths, the large and smaller circles, and the stars. After meditating on these symbols go to the following address to learn what the author says about them at  Santa Fe ndigenous Peoples Day.

Do you recognize this image?  It is a dream catcher. If it were your dream catcher, what would you like it to hold for you?  After your time of prayer with the dream catcher, go to the link below the picture to explore more about indigenous peoples and cultures.

Featured Website on the 2019 World Indigenous Peoples Day

Livestream of presentations from the 2019 Let the Languages Live Conference in Victoria, BC, Canada


From the Leadership Team of Gatherings for Women of Faith
May this World Indigenous Peoples Day heighten our relationship with all peoples!