Lenten Sermon Series- Creators Sacrifice

This Lent we will focus on a series of paintings depicting the Passion of Jesus by indigenous artist Ovide Bighetty.  The Indigenous Studies Program at Vancouver School of Theology compiled and named the paintings The Creator’s Sacrifice, and put together a worship experience. The paintings are designed to take us through Holy Week. This year, we will use the worship material and paintings of The Creator’s Sacrifice to walk through Lent.

To honor the indigenous tradition, Native American clergywoman Rev. Danira Parra will be with us one Sunday in Lent to lead our 10 a.m. worship experience.  She will also be leading a discussion following worship. The Sunday we will welcome Rev. Parra will be announced soon.  Rev. Parra comes to us from DaySpring Native American United Methodist Church in Illinois.  I hope you will plan to be with us on this important and illuminating morning.


About the Art

 Ovide Bighetty was born in 1969 in Pukatawagan Manitoba Canada. He is a Cree Missinippi- Ethiniwak self-taught artist well known for his various painting series. In 2002, Indian Metis Christian Fellowship (IMCF) commissioned Ovide to depict the vision that an elder had of Kisemanito Pakitinasuwin – The Creator’s Sacrifice; the Easter story or the Passion of Jesus Christ. Ovide accepted the challenge to paint the story in a fashion consistent with both the accounts in the gospels and aboriginal culture. Ovide painted the elder’s vision of the Easter story in his own aboriginal style which he describes as ‘Woodland Cree’. The setting for this Christian aboriginal artwork is the pre-European landscape of Ovide’s childhood home, Pukatawagan First Nation, Manitoba, Canada. Bighetty’s paintings are based on spirituality, stories and symbolism passed down by elders. He’s well known throughout the Canadian provinces, and Europe. Ovide passed away March 20, 2014, and his artwork continues to make an impact. You can view and purchase his artwork online here.


Lenten Special Offering:

Students can face challenging and unique barriers throughout their experience working towards a college degree. Whether it’s navigating mental health, identity development, or personal or medical concerns, Iowa State University has resources and support available to assist students with overcoming their individual obstacles. One of those resources is the Office of Student Assistance throughout their work coordinate the care and support students need for academic success and personal well-being.  Specifically, their office follows up with students hospitalized for a mental health crisis, supports students and bystanders navigating loss and its intersection with their role as a student, and facilitates response when an ISU student dies.

Student Assistance has a Crisis and Program Enhancement fund which was started by a gift from Paul and Lisa Niebuhr after their son Evan died in an auto accident.  Any giving received during this campaign would be used by the Student Assistance team via this fund to enhance services to students/families in a variety of ways.  Specifically, targeted outreach and support to some students navigating significant challenges, follow up with those students, and creating resources otherwise not available given funding parameters at Iowa State.

We’d invite you during the season of Lent to give generously to this program. The impact is great and the need is huge. You can make a donation online at our website, by mailing a check to the church office or placing your donation in the offering plate using a Lenten Special offering envelope. Thank you so much for your support!

Feb. 22nd        ASH WEDNESDAY.  Join us this evening at 7 p.m. for a moving and contemplative service in which we will distribute the ashes, listen to readings that usher us into the season of Lent, and sing together.  Pastor Mary will offer a short homily on Matthew 6: 1-6 called “The Privacy of Prayer.”  This scripture tells of Jesus reminding us to go into our rooms to pray in secret. Livestream available.