MNO Council performs a smudging ceremony at a local school

Submitted by: Senator Cecile Wagar, MNO Oshawa and Durham Region Métis Council

Oshawa Durham Metis Council_Wagar_Kearns
(L- R) Métis Nation of Ontario Oshawa and Durham Region
Métis Council Senator Cecile Wagar (second from left) and
Women's Representative Claire Kearns (third from left)
with members of the Notre Dame Catholic Secondary
School staff. (Picture source: Twitter - @notredame_css).
Click here to view a larger version of the picture.

Like other school boards across the province, the Durham Catholic District School Board’s (DCDSB) focus this year is to incorporate more Indigenous ways of learning at all grade levels and in all subjects.

In keeping with this mandate, the DCDSB have sought the knowledge of Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) Oshawa and Durham Region Métis Council (ODRMC) Senator Cecile Wagar and Women’s Representative Claire Kearns who have been active members on local Indigenous Education Advisory Circles for over six years.

At the beginning of the school year, Senator Wagar was invited to smudge DCDSB school administrators and members of the school board. Senator Wagar and Kearns were also invited to smudge the staff at Notre Dame Catholic Secondary School (NDCSS) in Ajax to end their November Professional Development Day. 

Smudging is a cleansing ritual practiced by First Nations and some Métis people. It is a practice where you burn a single or a combination of sacred medicines, which include sweet grass, sage, tobacco and cedar. The smoke that is created is then directed over an individual’s body, with particular attention usually being focused on one’s head, eyes, ears and heart.

Posted: January 20, 2017

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