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  • Jourdan Bennett-Begaye

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Jun 23, 2022

    Hailing from New Mexico, Jourdan Bennett-Begaye is a Diné (Navajo) citizen who identifies as the Towering House Clan, The Coyote Pass Clan of Jemez, The Mexican Clan and also The Hopi with Red Running Into the Water clan. Currently stationed in Nenahnezad of the Diné Nation, Jourdan Bennett-Begaye holds a master's degree in newspaper, magazine and online journalism. She is also a Newhouse Minorities fellow. She received her degree from The S.I. Newhouse School of Public C...

  • Family Matters: Your Family is Worth Fighting For

    Dan and Joy Degaris|Updated Jun 23, 2022

    We all have hopes and dreams for our families and a vision for what we want our families to be like. We want our homes to be a place where everyone feels safe, loved and respected. We also want our homes to be a place where every family member can discover his or her purpose, gifts and abilities. It's not easy to accomplish these goals though, is it? We face all kinds of challenges that can keep our families from being all that they can be. Some challenges we face are...

  • I Wanted to Impress My Friends

    Esther Hoppe|Updated Jun 23, 2022

    Everyone makes decisions that they wish they could change. There are things that you've done in the past that make you mad that you ever did them. Yet there's freedom from the hate that you have for yourself, there's freedom from the hate you have for that other person and it's a peace that would surprise you. The freedom that I found began the night that my Mom and I prayed for the Creator to come into my life. I was only six years old and I know that I didn't understand...

  • Mary Killman (b. 4.9.1991)

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Jun 23, 2022

    Although born in Ada, Oklahoma and reared in Texas, swimming champion Mary Killman is also a citizen of the Oklahoma Citizen Potawatomi Nation. At age 11, as a member of the Santa Clara Aquamaids, Killman competed as a race swimmer in youth competitions. "I took to the water like a fish," she would later state in an interview for Indian Country Today. At age 15, however, Mary decided to switch from race swimming to synchronized swimming. A member of a close-knit family, Mary...

  • Laura Waterman Wittstock (1937-2021)

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Mar 28, 2022

    While others trusted her as a confidant, innovator, mentor, and friend, to her family, Laura Waterman-married to Lloyd Wittstock for a time-was called "a great mother" by her five children (from a second marriage to Florencio Olivera Simas, deceased). Her four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren remember her as "the world's greatest." But as for tributes, there are many more than shared here. Born to Isaac "Jack" Waterman and Clarinda (Cleo Jackson) Waterman on the...

  • Coming Full Circle

    Brenlee Longclaws|Updated Mar 28, 2022

    God can give you all you need. He will give you more than enough. You will have everything you need for yourself. And you will have enough left over to give when there is a need. 2 Corinthians 9:8, NLV "The test is positive. I'm pregnant." Not knowing how to feel-elated or devastated-I knew challenges would be ahead. Though I'd become a Christian and gotten baptized during my pre-teen and teenage years, I'd been living a life devoid of God, leading a wild and reckless...

  • Jana Schmieding: Writer, Podcaster Actor, Comedian

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Nov 23, 2021

    Miniconjou and Sicangu Lakota actor, writer and comedian Jana Schmieding is known primarily for her work in the Rutherford Falls sitcom where she plays Reagan, the lead character. She shares little about her family or early life, but states that she was born and grew up in a small Oregon town with her older sister, Kristen, and raised "fairly traditionally in the Lakota ways." Jana studied theater arts at the University of Oregon and earned her master's degree from Mercy...

  • Thankful to be Alive

    Daniel Smith|Updated Nov 22, 2021

    Do not worry. Do not keep saying, 'What will we eat?' or, 'What will we drink?' or, 'What will we wear? The people who do not know God are looking for all these things. Your Father in heaven knows you need all these things. Matthew 6:31, 32 (NLV) One night in my isolated prison cell, I was facing many problems. It was a time and place very much like now. Facing many troubling problems and at the end of my rope, it seemed as if there was no hope. I was a heroin addict and even...

  • Jillian Weir, Indigenous Olympian

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Oct 4, 2021

    The 2020 Tokyo Olympics--celebrated in 2021 because of concerns for further spread of the COVID-19 Virus and Delta variant-can boast of the highest number of Indigenous participants than in any other Olympiad. From only three Indigenous athletes in the 2016 Rio Olympics, fifty such athletes headed to Japan to compete in the Tokyo 2020 games-the most ever selected in Olympic history. Sixteen participants hail from Australia alone, thirty-three from New Zealand, several are...

  • A Life Turned Right-side Up

    Connie Blackned|Updated Oct 4, 2021

    My life and family were upside down. My parents loved each other but alcohol drove them apart. Drink turned my dad into a monster, hitting and speaking terribly to my mom. My father became so abusive, one night he almost killed her by throwing her down a flight of stairs. Mom sought help but finally left him, separating when I was seven. Alcohol finally destroyed their marriage. I was thirteen and going through a lot of stress; my emotions were turned upside down. I had...

  • Judy Baker (b. 1943)

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Sep 2, 2021

    • Seminole Palmetto Doll Artist • Folk Historian Judy Baker learned the craft of Seminole palmetto doll-making from her grandmother and mother, and began crafting the dolls herself when she was around ten years of age. "Palmetto dolls are made from fiber found in the middle of palmetto bark," she explains. "It's brown in color, stretches after being cut, and after it is dried, it can be fashioned into dolls. Palmetto grows in thickets, and is harvested with tools inc...

  • Amazing Grace

    Mary Keewayassin|Updated Sep 2, 2021

    Praise the Lord, 0 my soul; all my inmost being, praise His holy name. (Psalm 103:1, NIV) I was about five years old when I got sent on a bus to residential school. I don't remember much before that, and I don't remember much about the school either. I stayed at the residential school until it burned down when I was 13 or 14. That was the year I started drinking. When I got home from residential school, I was sent to a training school because I was a minor with a drinking...

  • Eternity in My Heart

    James M. Peters|Updated Jun 16, 2021

    At age four, I was taken from my home by the Children's Aid Society. They placed me in about seven different foster homes in the space of two years because I kept running away, trying to make my way back home. All the places were very abusive. They used to beat me for speaking my language. I was just a little kid, but full-grown men would punch and kick me. That's when I would cry out for my mom. I was sexually abused by the older boys and men in the foster homes. I was forced... Full story

  • Mary Killman (b. 4.9.1991)

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Jun 7, 2021

    • Olympian, Synchronized Swimmer • Silver Medalist, Pan American Games • 2001 Synchro Athlete of the Year* Although born in Ada, Oklahoma and reared in Texas, swimming champion Mary Killman is also a citizen of the Oklahoma Citizen Potawatomi Nation. At age 11 as a member of the Santa Clara Aquamaids, Killman competed as a race swimmer in youth competitions. "I took to the water like a fish," she would later state in an interview for Indian Country Today. At age 15, howev...

  • Outstanding Native Women

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Mar 27, 2021

    • First Indigenous Canadian Woman to own and operate an airline • Included in DC Comics graphic novel Wonder Women of History "Dream it, design it, do it," Teara Fraser, who is Cree and Metis, says. And she has done exactly that. Fraser was born in Hay River, Northwest Territory (NWT), but has lived across British Columbia for much of her life. She was 30 years old when, after a second ride in a small plane, she decided to buy her own airplane and become a pilot. A year lat...

  • God Knows Me

    Jimmy Anderson|Updated Mar 27, 2021

    When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be. Psalm 139:16, NIV I remember standing out one night in my aunt's yard just looking at stars and thinking about the great God who created all things. At nine or ten years of age, I almost had a headache just standing there thinking, You mean this great God knows who I am? It was incomprehensible to me that...

  • Tumbling Down a Dark Staircase

    Bill Miller|Updated Feb 2, 2021

    My childhood was dark. First memories are pretty negative. I'm the firstborn of nine children. What I remember of my childhood was fighting, drunkenness and pain. I have a lot of painful memories from when I was a kid. I do remember the beautiful parts of living on the reservation-how I caught fish and ran with my dog. How I started playing the guitar. But it wasn't until later in life that I came to know Christ and He helped me to live with the terrifying nightmares that...

  • Outstanding Native Women

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Dec 8, 2020

    Deb Haaland, an enrolled member of the Pueblo of Laguna People, was born in Winslow, Arizona into a military family. Her father, J.D. "Dutch" Haaland, a Norwegian-American, was a decorated 30-year career Marine. He was awarded the Silver Star Medal for saving the lives of Marines in Vietnam in 1967. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. Mary Toya, Deb's mother, served in the U.S. Navy. According to a New York Times article, Haaland connected with her New Mexico voters...

  • From Victim to Victory

    DeBora Gurno|Updated Dec 8, 2020

    So if the Son makes you free, you will be free for sure. John 8:36 NLV In 1983, I was charged with first-degree murder. At the time, I was so messed up with drugs, that half the time I didn't really know what I was doing. I thought the man I stabbed had raped my sister. Out of revenge, I wanted to hurt him for this terrible act he supposedly committed. I was told by my court appointed attorney that I'd be spending the rest of my life in prison with no chance of parole. But my...

  • Back from the Bottom of Life

    Updated Dec 8, 2020

    Perhaps like DeBora Gurno, you feel you’ve reached the bottom of your life. But you are not alone. Your Father in heaven is waiting for you to turn to Him through Jesus Christ. He is longing for you to enter a relationship with Him. We all need to have a relationship with God. And that is not a thing we can achieve on our own. Jesus Christ said in John 14:6 in God’s book, the Bible, “I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the father but through me.” Jesus is the Son of God and only by giving our life to Him,...

  • OUTSTANDING NATIVE WOMEN

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Oct 14, 2020

    • First woman in her tribe to earn a Medical Doctor degree • Honored with the name of Medicine Victory Woman by her Blackfeet Tribe Mary DesRosier states that she sees the face of God in her family, friends and neighbors she chooses to serve through Indian Health Services (IHS) on the Blackfeet Reservation, in Browning, Montana-in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains where she grew up. Interested in medicine since her youth, Mary joined the University of North Dakota's Ind...

  • The Crying Warrior

    Jack White|Updated Oct 13, 2020

    You were chosen by God the Father long ago. He knew you were to become His children. You were set apart for holy living by the Holy Spirit. May you obey Jesus Christ and be made clean by His blood. May you be full of His loving favor and peace. 1 Peter 1:2 NLV When I was born they gave me a number. I was 643. That means I was the 643rd child born on Walpole Island Reserve in Ontario, Canada. I don't remember much about my early childhood. The only thing I do remember is that...

  • Healing Through Jesus Being My Crutch

    Parry Stelter|Updated Aug 6, 2020

    Over the course of the last five years I have had knee replacement surgeries on each of my knees. I had the surgeries because of chronic pain in the knee joints, arthritis in the joints and because the cushioning in the joints were gone. If anyone has had knee problems, you can relate to what I went through. Before I had those surgeries, I used a cane to help lessen the tension on those knees. Then, as I was recovering from those surgeries, I used a walker, then two crutches...

  • Ramona Harjo (February 5, 1938–February 5, 2005) and Josh Harjo

    K.B. Schaller|Updated Aug 6, 2020

    It is always refreshing to see or hear of a husband and wife team, especially Native American, in faith-based, Christian ministry. Such is the case of Josh (full blood Creek) and Ramona Harjo (full blood Choctaw). Because the non-Indian majority in the United States tend to regard all Native Americans as Reservation-based, they also regard them as practicing their own spirituality and traditions that are contrary to Christianity. Native Americans, however, are everywhere,...

  • Power to Conquer Pain and Suffering

    Rhoda Kakegamic|Updated Aug 6, 2020

    May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. -Romans 15:13 NIV Each of us is on a journey. It starts with the birth of a newborn baby and ends when that life is finished according to the will of God who gives us life. Along this journey, we all face different situations and yet we all face many of the same things. For instance, almost all of us have families, though our families...

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