Home Page

Northshore Unitarian Universalist Church
A liberal, welcoming congregation serving the North Shore of Massachusetts since 1966

  We Are Unitarian        

Indigenous Peoples Study Group

Indigenous Peoples Study Group                                                  

NSUU begins our worship service every Sunday with the following:

We acknowledge that the land we inhabit and on which our beloved Sanctuary in the Woods resides is the traditional territory of the Massa-adchu-es-et and Pawtucket, the original nations of this land, who continue to cry out for justice and self-determination. The traditional territory upon which North Shore UU church stands is not bound by state boundaries but by the ancestral heritage of First Nations peoples. We are bound by a past that uprooted their people like trees from the land – seven generations blown about and scattered.

To know more about the people who first inhabited this land, their history and contemporary issues, the Social Action Committee formed the Indigenous Peoples’ Study Group, with the intent of learning together through readings, movies, and guest lecturers and to share this information with church members.

The group’s first activity was to read the book “All the Real Indians Died Off” and 20 Other Myths About Native Americans by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz and then hold after-church discussions where we presented and discussed some of these myths such as Columbus Discovered America and Indians Are Anti-Science.

As part of our after-church meetings we viewed and then discussed the documentary Home from School: Children of Carlisle about the forced removal of Indian children from their homes and placement in residential schools to force their assimilation.

At a Sunday service, Thomas Green, a descendent of the Neponsett band of Massachusett and a steward of Massachusetts indigenous history, presented information about pre-colonial and colonial interactions with the indigenous Massachusett people.

Our minister and Director of Religious Exploration facilitated a church-wide reading of Braiding Sweetgrass; Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants. The author, Robin Wall Kimmerer, is a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation and a botanist. She weaves indigenous wisdom with science.

To learn positive actions we can take, some members attend UU Mass Action Indigenous Meetings so we can inform the congregation about current state legislation that supports indigenous people today in their struggle to retain their culture in our society.

This study group is open to all. If you are interested in joining, contact Cheryl Ferris, Chair of the Social Action Committee, or any SA committee member.