Native Land Acknowledgment: Processes to Heal, Steps to Restore

As we live, work, and worship in the land that is now called the United States, Lutherans Restoring Creation recognizes that we do so on land that was stolen from Indigenous peoples. As we are called to restore creation, we are also called to restore right-relationship with one another.  As we join in this holy vocation of loving our neighbor, we honor all our Indigenous siblings who have been companions of the lands, waters, and beings of Turtle Island since time immemorial. 

We charge our community to learn about the original and continuous stewards of the land upon which we exist. We lament legacies of violence, cultural genocide, and displacement of Indigenous communities; committing ourselves to hearing and speaking the truth of that history and its on-going effects. May we gather faithfully in mind, body, and spirit so that we may mend what has been broken and embody Christ’s gospel of abundant life.

Acknowledging Indigenous peoples who are the original care-takers of the land which feeds us has the potential to profoundly shift our relationship with the land and with each other.  How might you lead your church through a process that opens the door to awakening, acknowledging, reconciliation, and repudiation of the Doctrine of Discovery? How does this work intersect and feed your Creation Care Ministries? How can we work together to prevent colonizing frameworks to continue to bias our concepts of progress?

The best place to start your journey is with the ELCA’s Indigenous and Tribal Relations resource page:

For more perspectives, indigenous-led environmental movements, and ways to connect locally, please explore the following sites: (Please contact us if you know of more organizations, suggested next steps or calls to action we should lift up.)