Native Ministries in Canada

–Ed Dunn, director of Native Ministries for the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Canada

I was talking to someone the other day that is a loyal supporter of Native Ministries. She asked me how the ministry was progressing and I related to her several of the latest initiatives. She appreciated the update and I began to think that maybe more of you would like an update, as well. We’ll begin with our Native campmeetings.

The British Columbia Conference has held Native Campmeeting for many years, 34 in fact. It was first held at the Adventist campground at Hope, B.C., but about 20 years ago it was moved to Port Hardy, B.C., where it is still held each year. The traditional date is the first weekend in May at the Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw Adventist church. They usually have a great turnout and people from as far away as Alberta attend. They enjoy singing, preaching, sharing their testimonies, and eating together. It’s a great feast in many ways. It’s a blessing to reconnect with old friends and to meet new ones, as well. The main speaker this year will be Elder Ken Denslow, assistant to the NAD president.

This year the British Columbia Conference is holding two Native campmeetings because more Native people want to attend but long travel distances keep them from participating. The second Campmeeting will be on June 18-20, 2015 in the Kitwanga area of northern British Columbia. There will be nightly meetings during the week, culminating in the spiritual gathering on weekend. Pastors Monte Church and Edward Dunn will be the main speakers.

The Alberta Conference will host their Native campmeeting on the first weekend in June at the Bowden Youth Camp. They also will be enjoying music, good preaching, and sharing testimonies. Their featured speaker this year is Chief Brian Cladoosby from the Swinomish reservation south of Vancouver, B.C. Chief Cladoosby is an Adventist and president of the National Congress of Native Americans, which represents all of the Native Americans in the United States. He is planning to share inspirational stories of how his Creator has guided and protected him on his life journey.

The Ontario conference hosts a Native Spiritual Gathering at the Polytechnic Campus on the Six Nations reserve near Brantford, Ont. Their campmeeting date is August 28-29, 2015 and their speaker is Pastor Kevin Kiers. They too, love singing, sharing, eating, and listening to good speakers.

In April of 2014 the Maritime Conference held their first Native campmeeting in Fredericton, N.B. The plan is to hold their Native campmeeting every other year and on the in-between years to hold one in the Quebec Conference. We are waiting for the Native bible lessons, Native New Day, to be printed in French and hopefully help prepare the way for a Native campmeeting in Quebec.

If you have an interest in Native Ministries or a Native friend who would like to attend, please plan to come and enjoy the fellowship and enlarge your circle of Native brothers and sisters.

Ed Dunn is director of Native Ministries at the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Canada.

Canadian Native Campmeeting Calendar

Location                                Date                            Contact         

Port Hardy, B.C.                April 30 – May 2            Pastor Randy Elliott      250/902-0640
Bowden, Alta.                   June 5–7                       Pastor Peter Ford          403/786-1020
Kitwanga, B.C.                 June 19–20                    Zanna Ove                    250/849-5948
Six Nations, Ont.              Aug. 28–29                    Pastor Herb Sormin      519/770-4585