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This past year has been a beautiful and hopeful year for me. I have been called to many of the parishes to share with individuals and groups about our Anglican relationship with Aboriginal peoples, often as part of the Honouring Our Commitment campaign.

Burrard Deanery (Christ Church Cathedral, St. David of Wales, St. James', St. Paul's, and the four parishes of the Jubilee Cluster) chose to do a deanery education partnership series. We called it "The Spirit Within."

This series, which was comprised of four interactive workshops, was held earlier this year, and gave both the facilitators and the participants a practical and spiritual learning journey.

Through listening to the unique journey of First Nations persons, participants had an opportunity to increase their understanding of their own internal cultural philosophies, values, and ethics.

Each of us realized we must make adjustments in order to live peacefully with people of differing cultural values. We had open, honest discussions around boundaries and "baggage."

Most importantly, we did this all through interactive learning: we drew, did exercises, learned First Nations songs, danced - and the list went on. More than 30 people from various parishes in and beyond the deanery attended one or all of these workshops.This group of individuals committed to taking a risk to learn something new, to relate the new knowledge to self, and to respond to individual healing and reconciliation. We developed new partnerships, which is something that God calls us to do.

People told me that as we were brought together, we faced our deep fears, and offered our highest love. Thank you, Burrard Deanery.