Our blog

Canada Diary - Part 6

Posted by Lucy Moore on 23 Jun 2010

I am learning so much about hospitality, with the generosity and unfussedness of the people here. I stayed with Bishop Barbara Andrews for my time in Kamloops and while my experience of bishops is small, I found it hard to remember she is bishop over a huge area and many people as she is so unassuming, down to earth and 'ordinary', like a wise aunt you want to sit round the kitchen table with and soak up her wisdom. I am hugely impressed. Why don't we have women bishops? Why is it such a big deal? We are missing out on so much.

The morning was hot, baking hot, and I was dropped off at the First Nation museum, at the old Residential School. I'd browsed the exhibits, wept at the video of what we did to the native Secwepemc people, then went out to prowl around the outdoor exhibits. As I was peering at the plan - my sense of direction is not very sound and the river appeared to be on the wrong side - a museum official came up and said,' Hold on five minutes and I'll take you round if you like. 'So I was escorted on a private tour around pithouses and medicinal plant beds by the wonderful Hank, a Secwepemc himself and whose relations went to the residential school, so he was full of stories, in the most gentle and unpretentious way. We talked about forgiveness, and what I came away with was a respect for a people who are determined not to be victims but to learn from the past, protect and develop their culture without mothballing it and who hold no resentment at all that I could sense towards races who treated their ancestors so appallingly. Much food for thought. And many marmots, to my delight. No bears. Still no bears. I think they're lying to me. There are no bears. There are mosquitoes.

The afternoon and evening saw two sessions for local people from quite an area about Messy Church and we had a great fun time sharing the stories, pondering the questions, enjoying the crafts, delighting in what God is doing through Fresh Expressions and other forms of mission. It'll be fascinating to see what happens as a result of this seed-sowing time. I certainly left with the feeling that God has gone before me and that the Anglicans in the Parishes of the Interior are in excellent hands, with some brilliant creative clergy, a caring and incisive Dean and a visionary bishop.