The Original Orange Shirt – Faith-at-Home Focus, week of June 27, 2021

The Original Orange Shirt - Faith-at-Home Focus, week of June 27, 2021

Each week during the pandemic, Westminster provides a faith-at-home focus.

The ideas are to be simple-but-meaningful and adaptable. Think life-style more than curriculum.

This latest idea was presented on our annual Canada Day Service on June 27, 2021 by Laura Ruttan, our Sunday School Coordinator, and Pastor Ruttan.

Canada has many great things; but it is far from perfect. This has been very evident lately as we learn more about the horrors of the residential school system and the discovery of unmarked graves containing the remains of indigenous children. Thousands of indigenous children were taken from their homes and families and placed in the residential schools, an action then supported by the Canadian government and by many churches. This is a dark part of our history.

This week’s activity is an invitation to watch a 2-minute video by Phyllis Webstad (below). She had the original orange shirt, which the annual Orange Shirt Day on September 30th is now based upon. It’s a reminder about the residential schools system (Phyllis Webstad is a survivor), and about how every child matters.

We feel this video is good to watch with a variety of ages. If your children are very young, parents or grandparents should preview ahead of time.

After you watch the video, have a time of discussion. Two suggested questions are: (a) What were residential schools?, and (b) What does the fact that all people are made in God’s image (Genesis 1:27), teach us about the value of each person?

For those with older youth, you may want to take some time and look up the calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission as a discussion point about ongoing concerns.

Here is the video:


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