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Cheryl Bear on Campus
Members of the Providence Community had the privilege of hearing from award-winning singer songwriter Cheryl Bear in Community Chapel on Wednesday, October 12. Cheryl is from the Bear Clan in the Nadleh Whut'en First Nation in northern British Columbia. She travels throughout Canada visiting First Nations communities, performing concerts, and talking about tough issues like suicide, Residential Schools, and also talking about healing through Creator's Son, Yeshua. Cheryl and her husband Randy Barneston aim to visit each of the 1000 First Nation communities in Canada and the US, and they are well on their way, having visited approximately 450 to date. They also travel overseas with teams of Indigenous peoples, hosting cultural events and preaching the good news of Christ.
Cheryl shared a few of her songs in the chapel, and spoke about her story as an Indigenous person and as a Christian. She reminded her listeners that theology and worship must be done contextually and that there is a wonderful diversity in the cultures and traditions of the First Nation peoples. She also noted that First Nations are not merely a mission field. First Nations Christians offer much to the Church.
Cheryl also spoke and sang in the Foundations of Christian Worship class in the University College, sharing more of her own personal journey as she wrestled with the idea of being both Aboriginal and Christian. She encouraged the students to recognize what it is about their cultures that can be celebrated.
In addition to being an accomplished recording artist, Cheryl is also an ordained pastor in the Foursquare Church, earned her Doctor of Ministry degree from The King's University in Los Angeles, and is a board member of the North American Institute for Indigenous Theological Studies.
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