Sadly, there is a great deal of fear in our Regions that violence will again erupt over the Mi’kmaq fishing season about to open up in June.
An interfaith coalition centered in the Atlantic region has come together, and in conversation with Grandmothers supporting the fishers they have determined that in the midst of the COVID lock-down in NS at the moment we are limited in ways we can show support, but we could at least call for prayers.
We all acknowledge how complex and multi-sided this issue is, and our folks in Communities of Faith are touched by fishing rights, rules, regulations, and culture in many ways. But we hold firm to the fact that Mi’kmaw people have inherent treaty rights to fish in these waters and as signatories to the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Canada should be respecting those rights. And also that we want all to be able to fish safely.
So, we are simply asking for prayers for two things:
1) That there will be no violence when the Mi’kmaw fishery resumes in June.
2) That the Mi’kmaw treaty rights to fish will be honoured by our government.
Representatives of many faith communities will be offering prayers during these times: Buddhists, Unitarians, Quakers, Anglicans, people within the United Church of Canada, Jews, Muslims, African Baptists, Sikhs, Mennonites, Roman Catholics and others. We are inviting people as they are comfortable, to take photos in the place they will be praying and post on social media. Click below to find a poster that you can download and hold up when the photo is being taken.Download Poster
If you are accustomed to using Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter, post your photo using the hash tag #Praying4PeaceandFriendship.
Sample letter of concern: Interfaith Coalition Letter May 2021