Several years ago I was a part of leading a youth program at a church in York Region. While there, we made a shift in our programming from a large, attractional model towards something more organic and communal. It was all about working with youth to create safe spaces where they could belong.
At the time I was drawing from a variety of sources (missional writers, church historians, and other thinkers in community building). I had also read a fairly popular book by Seth Godin that inspired me to name our new program model ‘Tribes’. In my ignorance and excitement, I failed to consider the way I was appropriating that term from indigenous communities for my own exploitative benefit.
Settlers have an ongoing history of stealing Indigenous culture at their expense and to our benefit1 and I acknowledge my own culpability in doing this here.
I offer this semi-public acknowledgement of my failure as a way of hopefully pointing people in the direction of learning to do better together.
I highly recommend reading the late Arthur Manuel’s book, The Reconciliation Manifesto if you would like to deepen your awareness on this subject.
Other ways to grow: