RINGING CHURCH BELLS ON BLOOR STREET
Photo by Benoit Boutet
Churches in the faith corridor along Bloor St. will be honouring MMIWG and Two Spirit persons by ringing our bells. Bloor St.UC will join others on Mondays at noon beginning May 31. This will mark two years since the Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls delivered its report.
Bells will toll 7 times at noon every 4 seconds. This is to acknowledge the four directions and the Seven Grandfather Teachings: wisdom, love, respect, bravery, honesty, humility and truth.
Once again we will be displaying some red dresses outside the church. The original REDress Project was conceived by Jaime Black, a Winnipeg visual artist.Over 1200 indigenous women and girls have been reported missing or murdered over the past 30 years in Canada.The empty red dresses remind us of the pain and loss suffered by their families and all of Canada, and the need for redress and reconciliation.
To listen to Red, a song composed and sung by Raye Zaragoza to honour the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, click here. The song reminds us of the tragedy of Indigenous bodies found in the Red River.
To honour the lives of missing and murdered Indigenous women and children, and to honour the testimonials of family members who spoke at the MMIWG inquest, artists were asked to participate in an art exhibition. When you click here you will see the importance of art as a memorial and be immersed in the raw emotions that the tragedy of lives lost invokes.
To read the final report of the Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls please click here. The calls to action are a reminder to all of us that as we say our Land Acknowledgement each Sunday it comes with a commitment to educate ourselves and to act as we are able to honour those whose lives were lost, harmed or forever changed as Indigenous women and girls vanished from families. You can also read Native Women’s Association of Canada’s Action Plan to End the Attack Against Indigenous Women, Girls, and Gender-Diverse People here.