I have been blessed to become this woman’s friend and for her to befriend me. She is First Nations from Saskatchewan and I’m a settler from all over the place. We both live here in Wetaskiwin and we have become friends. I am so grateful for this friendship.
The church I go to Immanuel Anglican (I know right, Advent is our season) decided a number of years ago that we have to attend to the relationship between Indigenous and settler peoples. Particularly we have to attend to our relationships with our Indigenous neighbours – those who live in Wetaskiwin and those who live in Maskwacis. Maskwacis is the community closest to us and is made up of four First Nations. To do that the dear one, who is also the rector, came up with the idea of putting together a team to work on reconciliation issues. That team is made up of two First Nations women, myself and the dear one.
Both women have become friends. Unfortunately I don’t have a picture of me and my other friend, something I need to fix! This friendship has happened because I made a conscious decision to listen – not always an easy thing to do for this talker! To listen to their stories, to listen to their ideas, to listen to our common laughter – because we love to laugh!!
What has happened is that these women have become leaders in our church community and they have befriended me in ways that I are bigger than I could have asked or imagined. I am so grateful for this friendship, for it has fed me, guided me and supported me in difficult times. Thank you Bonny. Thank you Gloria. Let’s keep on befriending each other!