Water is Sacred: A Gathering at the Headwaters
Once again, people of faith and conscience are gathering at the sacred Mississippi Headwaters. During the weekend of June 3-5, we will honor the life-giving waters, affirm Native and Indigenous sovereignty, and nurture our connections with one another and the earth. Come away invigorated in our shared work of fighting for a world where treaties are honored and we’re free of fossil fuels.
In the Anishinaabeg Prophecies, we are in the time of the Seventh Fire and face two paths—one well-worn and scorched, and the other lush and green. Which path is our choice. We choose to listen to the elders and light the Eighth Fire. Let’s create a restorative and regenerative economy together! Special thanks to Akiing 8th Fire for their partnership and gift of this story.
The host organizations for this gathering include Minnesota Interfaith Power & Light, RISE Coalition, Niibi Center, Indigenous Environmental Network, 8th Fire Solar, Honor the Earth, and Minnesota Unitarian Universalist Social Justice Alliance (MUUSJA). If you would like to co-sponsor this event, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our “home base” for this family-friendly gathering will be the Lake Ozawindib Group Center at Itasca State Park. We will be in community together at the campsite and have opportunities in the surrounding area to learn, deepen, and pray. Join us for part of a day or the whole weekend!
- Friday, June 3: Arrival; the Ozawindib camp opens at 5:00 pm; Shabbat observance; campfire circle with drums
- Saturday, June 4: Tours and conversations (see below for details); time for reflecting and connection; community meal and conversation about the rights of nature; Havdalah
- Sunday, June 5: Multifaith prayer circle at the Headwaters at 11:00 am; departure
We know that this weekend includes Shabbat and Shuvuot in the Jewish tradition as well as Pentecost in the Christian tradition. We are working with faith leaders and community members to ensure there are meaningful opportunities for observance by participants in these traditions.
If you are able, a suggested donation of $50 or more per person is appreciated. Help us cover the cost of meals, the group campsite, and ensure this event is financially accessible to all. Donations can be made online or in person at the camp.
Saturday Tours & Conversations:
- 11:00 am-2:00 pm: LaSalle Lake State Recreation Area — Hear the story of the Firelight Camp. Firelight was named by Anishinaabe elder, Leonard Thompson, to highlight the work of bringing truth to light. Dawn Goodwin and Simone Senogles will also talk about their experiences in the Water Protector movement. Sack lunch provided.
- 2:45-4:30 pm: The Green Road to a Local “InRenewable” Economy — Visit Winona LaDuke’s Hemp Farm and 8th Fire Solar for a glimpse of an emerging indigenous local economy. Led by Winona LaDuke and Marie Killswarrier.
- 7:30 pm (after dinner): Rights of Nature — Gather at the fire at Ozawindib camp for a conversation about the Rights of Nature and Treaties. Led by Joe LaGarde and Terry Janis from the Niibi Center.
Lodging & Food:
A tent camping section is part of our Lake Ozawindib group campsite. You can reserve a tent space through the registration form below. Cabins, suites, and rooms may also be available to rent in the Itasca State Park or the La Salle Lake State Recreation Area (8 miles away). Make a reservation through the DNR. You can also search for hotels, motels, or private rentals in the area. All participants are responsible for making their own accommodations.
Saturday’s community meal will be provided by a caterer from White Earth; vegan options will be available. If you will be tent camping at the group campsite, breakfast will be provided both Saturday and Sunday. All participants are encouraged to bring food to suit any dietary needs.
- This event has passed.