The Northern Illinois Conference Committee on Native American Ministries seeks to:
- Provide basic educational resources for churches to explore the history and culture of Native Americans in their region, and gain a better understanding of contemporary Native American life;
- Empower congregations to explore Native American theology through book studies, conversation and building relationships with Native Americans in the conference and surrounding conferences;
- Explore the call to repentance initiated by the 2012 General Conference and the Council of Bishops;
- Support our Ministry of Presence with the St. Kateri Center of Chicago, a Roman Catholic Native American community with whom CONAM has had a relationship for over 25 years, through fundraising for educational and cultural programs, participation at events, and teaching cross-cultural workshops.
The Northern Illinois region has a high population of Native Americans from varying tribes, many of whom have encountered harm or misunderstanding from the Christian church. As United Methodists, we accept the mandate to work for reconciliation and healing when possible, and to form meaningful relationships with Native American people as we work together to bring about the reign of God. [/one_half]
Acts of Repentance Listening Sessions
In 2014, the Northern Illinois Conference began its Acts of Repentance with Native Americans by listening. A total of six listening sessions were held at Community UMC in Naperville, Kateri Center in Chicago, Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary, Midwest Soarring Foundation, Starved Rock Lodge, and the American Indian Center. These listening sessions form the basis for how the Northern Illinois Conference will continue these Acts of Repentance in conjunction with Native Americans. Click below to read the notes from 4 of the 6 sessions:
- Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary 11/19/2014
- American Indian Center – April 25, 2015
- Listening Session at Kateri Center
- Starved Rock listening session
- Listening sessions review Acts of Repentance with Native Americans
CONAM would be honored to come lead a presentation or participate in a worship service at your church. A large part of our work is what we call a “ministry of presence” and education; we are always hoping to form new relationships with persons who want to know more about Native American culture and theology.
We will be adding more resources to this page that relate to local and national efforts to support Native American ministries. You can also “like” our page on Facebook: Northern IL Committee on Native American Ministries. facebook_account
Worship & Prayer Resources:
This a broad compilation of worship resources, poetry and writings from Native American United Methodists across the country.
This is an excellent online resource specific to Native peoples of the Great Lakes region.
Acts of Repentance:
From the Office of Christian Unity and Interreligious Relationships, this site details the discussions leading up to the Act of Repentance at the 2012 General Conference, provides many resources for conversation in local congregation, and offers Scripture reflections. There is also a link at the bottom of the site to view the entire Act of Repentance service featuring Rev. Dr. George Tinker.
The Ministry of Music:
CONAM’s Native Musician, Bill Buchholtz
If you would like more information about Native American theology, culture or ministries, CONAM is happy to come to your church for a presentation or informal teaching time. We are blessed to have our brother and friend, Bill Buchholtz (Cree & Algonquin) who offers the ministry of playing the Native American flute at these educational events. You may contact Bill at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Mitchell Museum of the American Indian (Evanston, IL):
The Mitchell Museum is an excellent place to find a variety of exhibits, resources, history and current information about Natives all over the country. Admission is very low, and there are free days listed throughout the year.
Other Theological and Worship Resources:
- Click here for list of resources