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Rewriting History Part Two
The recent First People's joint treaty of reconciliation with the Church will bring God's blessing to Canada, say First People's leaders.

From Grand Chiefs to mayors to members of Parliament – participants from across North America assembled in Ottawa on National Aboriginal Day 2006 to attend the signing ceremony of the Covenant of the First Peoples of Canada (see the video on the Acts News Network).

"We've blamed the white man for broken treaties. We've blamed the government for broken treaties. We've blamed the Church for broken relationships," commented former Deputy Grand Chief Kenny Blacksmith, whose organization, Gathering Nations, spearheaded the event. "Now all of a sudden we have this treaty that we've entered into among ourselves. And so now [with] that treaty, the onus of covenant-keeping is on us. There is no one to blame."

"This was a First Nations initiated, First Nations led, First Nations signed, covenanted by the First Peoples, all together," observed Stacey Campbell, founder of the Canadian Prophetic Council, "and you will see a ripple effect as everything comes into alignment and in divine order in Canada."

Never before have the First Nations, Inuit and Métis pledged to bond together as one through their faith in Christ, or committed together to embrace non-native Canada.

"As a leader, as a Grand Chief, I know about treaties. And when I read covenants I knew immediately it meant treaties," noted Lynda Prince, former Grand Chief of the Carrier-Sekani Nations. "The covenant, just like in a marriage [is] a holy ceremony. It's a uniting where we can't be out there separate anymore."

Inuit, Métis and First Nations representatives first realized the need for a covenant at the 2005 First Peoples' Summit, in which the three groups gathered together and for the first time began to reconcile their ancient conflicts.

"Something broke in our hearts [and] brought reconciliation," recalled Billy Arnaquq, pastor and evangelist of Community Qikiqtarjuaq.

Métis representative Joe McCaveney described his experience: "Coming into unity with my brothers of the First Nations and of the Inuit, I really felt a sense of wholeness and completion."

Upon signing the covenant, "there was a literal transformation in the people," affirmed Blacksmith.

Members of Parliament were among the government, church and community leaders who witnessed the signing ceremony.

"It's going to make a spiritual statement to our country."

"I think it's significant that these groups are coming together on their own initiative, extending forgiveness, seeking reconciliation," noted Harold Albrecht, MP for Kitchener-Conestoga. "It's going to make a spiritual statement to our country."

"It is a very profound thing," remarked James Lunney, MP for Nainamo-Alberni, B.C. "And I'm very pleased to be here to be a witness of the signing of a historic covenant."

Lynda Prince indicated that unity between Canada's original people groups could have restored an ancient spiritual foundation to the nation—one that might have an effect on Canada's future. Those who uphold a covenant, she explained, receive blessing and protection from the Lord. "I felt a protection came over the nation—[a] canopy of protection—onto the governments, onto our borders, onto the Church, across Canada, into the [reserves of the] First Nations."

In addition, "The amazing thing of reconciliation and covenant is that it unlocks doors that were shut for a long time," said Alain Caron, member of the national team of Watchmen for the Nations. "God has been walking in this nation for a number of years now, bringing His Church to a whole new dimension. Tonight is one of the key steps in that whole journey … . The Lord is bringing a completion in the nation [and] in the Church to pour His Spirit [among] us."

Caron concluded that the evening was a crucial moment for the First Peoples' commitment to walk together and to embrace the rest of the Church.

To find out more about this historic event visit the Acts News Network.

Marney Blom is the news director for Acts News Network.

Originally published on the website of the Acts News Network, July 2006.




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