Dismantling Racism Team (DRT)

Indian arrowheads

As we’ve been learning from the summer sermon series, telling family stories is powerful and hearing stories is critical to our understanding of ourselves. In the same way, stories about people, place, and history can be powerful tools. They broaden our perspective, introduce us to new ideas and experiences, and increase our empathy. They can even be healing. According to the Minnesota Council of Churches (MCC) “Stories heal because they make invisible pain visible. The listener and storyteller are both healed by their acts.”

In an effort to create healing through story-telling, the MCC offers Sacred Sites Tours, which provide an opportunity to learn about Minnesota history from a Native perspective. The tours are led by Rev. Jim Bear Jacobs (Mohican) and Rev. Dr. Kelly Sherman Conroy (Oglala Lakota); they start in St. Paul and include visits by car to Fort Snelling State Paul, Dakota Internment Camp following the Dakota-U.S. War, and Pilot Knob Hill, a traditional burial ground. Tours are free, with a free will offering appreciated, but space is limited. The next available dates are September 21 (3pm – 7pm). For more information, visit http://mnchurches.org/what-we-do/healing-minnesota-stories.

The Minnesota Humanities Center (MHC) offers a similar immersive experience called, “Learning from Place: Bdote,” which visits “sites of great significance to Dakota people in the Twin Cities.” Registration costs $75 and the tours, which are offered every other month, fill quickly. MHC periodically offers other Learning from Place events as well, including St. Paul’s Little Africa, North Minneapolis, and LBGTQ+ History in Downtown Minneapolis. For more information, visit https://www.mnhum.org/events/.