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Editor's Note: We're grateful to author Ashton Hampton, a Sanctuary Framily member and First Native American, who intentionally and personally crafted this piece for our learning. This devotional is intended to be read as a prayer in a meditative moment, in the style of a poem or spoken word. Additionally, it should be noted that some people prefer "Native American" while others prefer "Indigenous" -- because of this, and in her attempt to honor all who read this statement, she uses the terms interchangeably.


We take time today, Abba Father, to come before you in prayer to acknowledge the land on which we stand. 

We acknowledge that the fortune of our land wealth rests on the dispossession of indigenous peoples from their homes. 

We, [those who call Central Ohio home,] acknowledge the Hopewell and Adena people, whose land our feet stand on right now -- for you are the past, present and future caretakers of this land.

We grieve, we lament aloud with anger and regret, for the many were forced off of their homes to make space for white settlers during movements funded and fueled by governmental mandates. Lord, keep our minds on the criticality of this moment, as the land that serves as a foundation of our homes, of the building in which we sing our praise, was and still is, stolen land. We remember these truths as humanity serving you, our God, in the pursuit of justice in every capacity. 

We hold a mirror revealing the past history, and we witness the 370 previous treaties signed with indigenous peoples from 1778 to 1871 with language that included guarantees of peace, definitions of land boundaries, preservation of clean water and protection against domestic and foreign enemies...

Father God, how far we have fallen. 

We acknowledge the Treaty of Greenville in 1795, which provided only a short term resolution for the people who lived where we stand, as it would be broken most boldly in 1808 and continuously broken and ignored from that point on for the sake of greed, possession and control. 

Lord, we acknowledge the genocide, the murder and suffication of identity that devestated the people of the land we now breathe in.

We acknowledge the forced assimilation of the Native American people, to create a lesser class segregated by race for the benefit of white colonization.

We as a church pray to Jireh, you provider, for your continued provision of justice for the cultural and linguistic resilience of the Hopewell, Adena, Myaamia, Shawandesee Tula, Kaskakaia, Sioux, Navajo and all indigenous tribes around the globe. 

We acknowledge the fact that we as a collective community inhabit land that belongs to those who are still living. 

Father God, we pray for discernment, we pray for action, we pray for remembrance, we pray for this knowledge to change our perspective and our actions. 



For further learning, please consider: