Land Back Conversation

This self-guided educational invitation will steep participants in the month ahead in materials relating to questions of faithful engagement with the church’s historic and contemporary relationship with indigenous peoples of Turtle Island (the U.S.). 

Please engage any or all of the materials at your own pace. We will come together in-person on Monday, October 9 (Indigenous Peoples Day) for some guided reflection and listening with/to one another. Join us at United at 5:30 pm- we invite you to bring a brown-bag dinner.

This is an educational foundation for future exploration. Rather than generating action items on the 9th, we will be prioritizing deep engagement with our areas of awareness and ignorance, and reflecting on what might be transformative about our learning. A task force for each congregation will reconvene after our collective reflection to consider/propose future pathways.


Book: The Land is Not Empty: Following Jesus in Dismantling the Doctrine of Discovery by Sarah Augustine (available for purchase wherever you buy books)

Qs: What was new or surprising to you in this book? What does Augustine experience/observe about the a) historic and b) current relationship between “the church” and indigenous peoples? What does Augustine advocate for – what does she believe is “following Jesus in dismantling the Doctrine of Discovery?”


Broken Treaties – OPB – YouTube

Native Nations – Standing Together for Civil Rights – YouTube

Qs: What did you learn about the particular history of the state of Oregon? Which stories most impacted you and why? What is the significance for us as a church, and as citizens, of broken treaties?

What did you learn about the role of the Lutheran church in the American Indian civil rights movement of the 1970s and 1980s? What questions were you left with?

ELCA Declarations/Resolutions: 

Repudiation_Doctrine_of_DiscoverySPR16.pdf (

Declaration_to_American_Indian_Alaska_Native.pdf (

Beyond A Resolution – Living Lutheran

See attachment for CWA 2022 Land Back Memorial

Qs: What has the ELCA committed itself to? Who do you think is responsible for fulfillment of these commitments, and how?

Land Acknowledgements:

A guide to Indigenous land acknowledgment – Native Governance Center

Beyond Land Acknowledgment: A Guide – Native Governance Center

Qs: What matters to you about land acknowledgements? Why might they be important? What would give you pause or concern about adopting one?


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