Celebrate Native American Day
Please join the PC(USA) in the celebration of this special observance during Sunday worship on a Sunday in September or any Sunday during the year.
How it all began
In 1993 the Presbytery of Genesee Valley in the Synod of the Northeast sent an overture to the 205th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) requesting that Columbus Day be replaced on the Presbyterian planning calendar with Native American Day. The General Assembly considered the overture and proposed that a day other than Columbus Day be selected and that the General Assembly Council report back to the 206th General Assembly in 1994.
In consultation with the Native American Consulting Committee (NACC), the national Native American Caucus, the fall equinox, which falls on September 22 or 23 each year, was selected. This day marks harvest time for many American Indian tribes and is a time of celebration. Since this is not a Native American Sunday, emphasis upon Native American Ministry can be held whenever appropriate for the local Presbyterian churches, for their pastors and for their worship leaders.
The overture establishing Native American Day was approved at the 206th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in 1994 at Wichita, Kansas. The purpose of the overture was to “raise awareness of Native ministries and recognize contributions of Native peoples.” In our churches it can be the catalyst for education, awareness, understanding and remembering the American Indians in our midst and across the nation — those living on reservations and tribal lands as well as those living in urban areas.
Did you know?
- There are 562 federally recognized tribes located on reservations, in rural areas on allotment lands and in the cities.
- U.S. Census reported a Native American population of 2,475,959 with the largest number residing in urban areas vs. reservations.
- In the 1950s, many American Indians were “relocated” to the urban centers of the United States. The greater Los Angeles area is one of the largest Native American population centers. It has been said that there are more American Indians living in this particular area than on any of the reservations throughout the United States, other than the Navajo reservation in the great Southwest.
- There are 110 Native American churches and chapels in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Each congregation maintains its culture, language and traditions in varying degrees.
- Presbytery of Grand Canyon supports 23 churches and chapels with the largest number of churches on the Pima and Navajo Reservations.
- Dakota Presbytery, Synod of Lakes and Prairies, is the oldest and only Native American nongeographic presbytery within Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)
- Today you will find 110 Native American churches and chapels located in eight synods and 22 presbyteries of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Download the Directory of Native American Congregations.
Thank you for the comment about your family history. I am Pima, T'hono O'odham and Nez Perce. On June 3rd, I began as the Associate for Native American Congregational Support. Please email me for more information about these congregations.
My family history tells of an Anishinabee maternal grandmother and paternal greatgrandparents in Pequot and Onondaga.This is undocumented .MY Family has been raised in Native American tradition/protestant traditionThe rest of my family history is Celtic All Northeast NorthAMerica.I have been an elder in a Circle and I'm Presently an elder in New SCotland Presbyterian Church New Scotland N.Y. Iam very interested in Native American CHurches and Chapels in The Presbyterian Church Thanks Kindly for the link,Blessings Christine