All Nations Hymn and Worship Service to Feature Indigenous Hymns | Lifestyles

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People attending the All Nations Anthem and Worship Service can expect “good singing of native hymns”, worship leaders say.

“These are very important to our tribes and our local Native churches,” said Reverend Larry Robinson, Osage, pastor of the Indian United Methodist Church of Tulsa. “These songs, a lot of them came out of the moves, the Trail of Tears. Some of these songs have been passed down through the years in our churches. You’re going to hear some great native songs.”

Robinson is one of four pastors leading the service, from 10 a.m. to noon at Bacone College Chapel. Other pastors are Reverend Archie Mason, a former Cherokee-Osage from Tulsa; Brandon Kemble, Ponca, pastor of Ponca City Indian Baptist Church, and Henry Birdtail, Cherokee, pastor of Oak Grove Baptist Church in Webbers Falls.

Between messages, visitors will be invited to sing hymns in their tribal languages, said Sarah Megan Kelley of the Muskogee Oklahoma Native American Association.

“What we like to do is open it up. Since we’re going to be on the Bacone campus, hopefully the students will be there to sing at Choctaw or Muscogee (Creek),” she said. “Madison Shoemaker is going to sing some Cherokee anthems.”

Robinson said visitors can also expect to hear “good native preaching from the Bible.”

“It will be a good time of fellowship and a good time to be a native and a Christian,” he said, adding that his message of courage would come from Deuteronomy.

Mason, a Cherokee-Osage elder, will lead a cedar ceremony about 30 minutes before worship.

Margarett Kelley, Osage, described the service as a way to “cleanse the mind of all bad thoughts and feelings, so that you have a greater openness in your mind and spirit to good things.”

“You are going to come in and receive the Word of God and open yourself up to a spiritual event,” she said. “The smoke purifies you and cleanses you of all bad things. It comes upon you. The eagle fan, we consider it to be a religious symbol. You bring the smoke to your mind, then to your heart, then to your body. It’s a purification.”

Kelley said she sees similarities with the Catholic Church, because the church burns incense.

“When the Osages met the priests, they saw similarities in their practices, so a lot of the Osages are Catholic,” she said. “We have a beautiful Catholic church in Pawhuska. Stained glass depicting some of our people.”

If you are going to

WHAT: All Nations Hymn and Worship Service.

WHEN: 10 a.m. to noon on Sunday.

WHERE: Bacone College Chapel, 2299 Old Bacone Road.

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