By Lisa L. McGloiry
In celebration of National Native American Heritage Month, Dream of Destiny is honored to showcase Christianity Today's (CT) online webinar entitled Heritage and Hope: Listening to Native American Christian Voices led by vice president of strategic partnerships, Edward Gilbreath. This conversation is part of CT's "The Big Tent Initiative," designed to recognize the growing presence of racial, ethnic, and generational cultures within the Northern American Church. Gilbreath and a panel of Native American Christian leaders discuss faith, history, culture, and the spiritual issues confronting ministry leaders who serve ingenious communities. The panelists also discuss the tension of being Christ-followers and remaining true to their tribal cultures.
Please click here to listen to Heritage and Hope: Listening to Native American Christian Voices.
Renee Bengay is the national director of Nations, a Cru ministry that seeks to honor Native American students and faculty by restoring their lives and culture with Jesus Christ. She is from the Zuni tribe in Zuni, New Mexico. Renee and her husband Donnie are the proud parents of three daughters.
Siouxsan Robinson is president of The Red Road, a ministry that raises awareness of the history and plight of Native American communities. She is a Blackfoot Sioux, a division of the Lakota people and understands the challenges of growing up in a traditional Native culture while living in a contemporary world. Ms. Robinson was born on the Rosebud reservation in South Dakota and raised on the Stand Off Reserve in Alberta, Canada. She and her husband, Charles, have seven children and reside in Franklin, Tennessee.
Anna Ross is an enrolled member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Ojibwe in North Dakota and is currently an instructor and advisor for the Ogimaawiwin Leadership & Management Program at Turtle Mountain Community College. She also is an activist developing cross-cultural collaboration in both urban and tribal Native communities. Ross and her husband recently planted Turtle Mountain Epiphany Covenant Church on the Turtle Mountain Reservation in North Dakota.
Rev. Dr. Randy Woodley is a scholar, activist, author, activist, farmer, and recognized leader in Indigenous and Intercultural Studies, Ecology, Spirituality, Race, Theology, and Missiology. He is an author of several books, including Shalom and the Community of Creation, Living in Color, Decolonizing Evangelicalism, The Harmony Tree, and two forthcoming titles, Becoming Rooted and Indigenous Theology and the Western Worldview. Rev. Woodley is of Cherokee ancestry.
Terry M. Wildman is chief of Rain Ministries. This ministry encourages indigenous peoples to understand their destiny in Jesus Christ and facilitates reconciliation between Christian churches and First Nations people. Mr. Wildman also serves as project manager, editor, and lead translator of First Nations Version New Testament published by Intervarsity Press. Born and raised in Michigan, Mr. Wildman is of Ojibwe and Yaqui ancestry. He is a former pastor while currently serving as a worship leader, recording artist, songwriter, and storyteller. He and his wife, Darlene, live in Arizona.