St David’s prepares for pow wow
A celebration of Native American life will take place with the biannual St David’s Islanders and Native Community Pow Wow on June 6 and 7.
The charity announced the dates as well as its new committee chairwoman Terlena Murphy, who took over from Nives Filice last November.
Ms Filice, who held the role for eight years, said the committee wanted to regain the cultural identity that was lost during slavery.
She said: “Our Native American ancestors were brought to Bermuda from East Coast tribes and were banned from spiritual practices and beliefs.
“We have been fortunate that our East Coast cousins never gave up their search for us when we reconnected, they were excited to teach us what we had lost.
“Our pow wows have demonstrated that we are gaining back our native culture and led this cultural awakening during the years I served as chairman.
“This will continue to gain momentum under Terlena’s leadership.”
She added: “Each pow wow is an opportunity for persons to heal any past hurts, celebrate life and reconnect with family and friends.”
The charity said that the event, which will be held at the Lords Cricket Ground in St David’s, has developed since 2002 and that it displayed “the local customs of our community and our invited Native friends”.
Ms Murphy said: “This year, we will honour the life of Patricia Stines-Raynor, Blue Blanket, our secretary, a most beautiful woman who served our committee unselfishly.
“It is our hope that people will come and learn something about us and themselves as we give thanks to those who came before us.”
She said it was an “honour” to take on the role of chairwoman and added that she was “pleased” to work with the other executive team members — Stephen Tucker, the vice-chairman, Anthony Paynter, the treasurer, Janet DeBraga, the secretary and Antione Lugo, the assistant treasurer.
Ms Murphy, who has served on the committee since 2007, first as secretary, then as vice chairwoman, said: “Already, they have shown great heart and dedication towards getting tasks accomplished to progress our initiatives.”
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