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Monday, May 3, 2010

Indigenous Sunday Celebration

One of the missionary priorities of the MJ-Digos Team is the inculturation of the Word of God. Last September 30, October 7, and October 14, 2007, we had a series of Indigenous Sunday celebrations. We organized the celebrations according to the theme “THE WORD OF GOD AND THE INDIGENOUS COMMUNITIES,” proposed by the Episcopal Commission on Indigenous peoples (ICIP) of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CPCP).
One of the ways the Tagakaulo people interpret and celebrate the Word of God in the indigenous communities is by means of dancing. It is through the indigenous dance that they see, feel and experience the significance of the Word of God in their life.

Coming together as indigenous people to celebrate their day, they became aware of the richness of their culture, as well as their oneness with nature and with “Tumanem” (God the Provider). Celebrating together, they also expressed their thanksgiving to “Tumanem” – the source of their life and their ancestral land. At the same time, they also rely on Tumanem for protection and guidance, especially in times when their ancestral domain risks to be taken away by some politicians and businessmen in the name of what they call “progress and development”.

Thus, the Tagakaulo people are inviting us to journey with them and also to learn and be able to dance their own indigenous dances.

Fr. Naz Sawey, MJ was a missionary in Nigeria, in Benguet, Philippines and is now working among the Tagakaulo in Digos in the island of Mindanao, Philippines.

Email: nazsawey@yahoo.com

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