Memorial by Jay Begay, Jacob Nez and Jeremy Blackwater
This weekend we drove to the Rez to bury our friend, M. We sprinkled the grave with sacred pollen and tobacco and burned sage for him. We put his clothes and few possessions in the grave with him. We read some things he liked and did traditional and Christian prayers. Jeremy gave the eulogy.
Here are some of the readings that the family let us read. We have used these many times in the Spirit Journey Youth and we are comforted by them. The family appreciated our contribution.
Tecumseh “So live your life that the fear of death can never enter your heart. Trouble no one about their religion; respect others in their view, and demand that they respect yours. Love your life, perfect your life, beautify all things in your life. Seek to make your life long and its purpose in the service of your people. Prepare a noble death song for the day when you go over the great divide.”
Bishop Steven Charleston “I place my offering into the open hand of Mother Earth, a small sprinkling of tobacco swept away on the feathered wind. I look to the face of the sky, the mirror behind which generations of my people stand watching. I recite quiet prayers to the compass points of the horizon, the borders of time in which we live. Within the circle on which I stand I draw all of life as closely as I can, humbled to be taking breath as my gift in return, given this day from a God who loves us all, and smiles when we pray, each in our own way.”
Affirmation of Faith, New Zealand Prayer Book, 1989
You, O God, are supreme and holy.
You create our world and give us life.
Your purpose overarches everything we do.
You have always been with us.
…You are God.
You, O God, are infinitely generous, good beyond all measure.
You came to us before we came to you.
You have revealed and proved your love for us in Jesus Christ, who lived and died and rose again.
You are with us now.
You are God.
You, O God, are Holy Spirit.
You empower us to be your gospel in the world.
You reconcile and heal; you overcome death.
You are our God.
We worship you.
Honor the Sacred.
Honor the Earth.
Honor our Mother.
Honor the Elders.
Honor all with whom we share the Earth:
Four leggeds, two leggeds, winged ones,
swimmers, crawlers, plant and rock people.
Walk in Balance