Black art on an orange background: intricate and beautiful traditional West Coast Indigenous art, with the number 215 in script in the centre. gaysalishart is the credit in the bottom left.

Art by Chase Gray, gaysalishart, free for educational use. Please donate to the Indian Residential Schools Survivor Society in thanks for the art if you use it; please visit the artist’s site for a copy, and please credit.

This service was offered in response to the bodies of the 215 children found at the former Kamloops Indian Residential School, and was shared in worship with Living Skies Regional Council and others on the Indigenous Day of Prayer, Sunday, June 20 2021. Written by Jordan Cantwell, Brenda Curtis, Lorna King, and Frances Kitson, ministers serving the United Church in Saskatchewan.

The service is primarily for the non-Indigenous church and its members. To be a settler or newcomer Christian in Canada and the United Church is to inherit a legacy that holds the heartbreaking stories of residential schools. Along with doing justice work, we are called to feel this legacy: to feel the grief, anguish, and anger.

All use of this service in public worship or private reflection is welcome. All text is used with permission where needed.  All stories and figures are sourced from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission final report, archival material, or Indigenous-led organizations as named, and the service text includes these links. Please be mindful of the continuing profound impact of the residential school system on Indigenous communities and people, and do not assume that only non-Indigenous people may be present for worship. Please have supports ready.

Powerpoint (on Google Drive: 118 MB, so leave time for download if you’re in a low connectivity area)
Full liturgy  as Word document; to be used with the Powerpoint. PDF version of the liturgy here.
United Church Psalm of Lament (Word document; also contained in the full liturgy).