ELCA Launches Truth and Healing Movement

4/12/2023 2:00:00 PM

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The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), has announced the launch of the ELCA's Truth and Healing Movement. The focus of the initiative is to increase the church's understanding of the impacts of colonization on Indigenous people in past generations and in the present.

"We must be in better, right, and healthy relationships with the Indigenous people of Turtle Island," said Eaton. "As we know, the truth and our knowing and embracing it, is the first step toward healing for all of us." 

In 2016, the ELCA Churchwide Assembly adopted the Repudiation of the Doctrine of Discovery. Following this action, Eaton commissioned a task force to lead the work outlined in the repudiation. The task force also developed "A Declaration of the ELCA to American Indian and Alaska Native People," which confessed the church's complicity in the oppression and genocide of Indigenous people and recommitted the ELCA to the work of Repudiation.

The ELCA's Truth & Healing Movement will enlist and empower members to become involved in the areas of focus started by the task force: development of appropriate settler narrative from a Lutheran perspective; encouraging the ritual practice of land acknowledgement; understanding Lutheran participation in Indian Boarding Schools; and support for communities impacted by murdered and missing Indigenous women and girls. The movement will also offer ways to participate in the national Truth and Healing Movement.

Since the 1960s Lutherans have supported the American Indian Movement, working towards justice for and with Indigenous People. The ELCA's Truth & Healing Movement commits this church to building and strengthening right relationships with our Indigenous neighbors.

Learn more about the ELCA's Truth & Healing Movement


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