Thanks to a New Opportunities Grant, a new partnership between the Native American ministries of the United Methodist Church (UMC) and the Episcopal Church is starting to take shape in Oklahoma. The UMC has matched the funds offered by our own Office of Indigenous Ministries, enabling planning to move forward on an exciting new project: The Native Scholars Project.
The Native Scholars Project plan is designed to create a new theological resource written by Native American scholars. These women and men will be invited from both denominations and from several tribes. They will be Native American professors, elders and church leaders who will work together on topics that are central to the Christian tradition, but from the Native American viewpoint. Eventually, their work will be collected and published, offering a renewed teaching from our Native tradition for many years to come.
This effort is being supported not only by the Episcopal and UMC Native communities in Oklahoma, but by Oklahoma City University and the Saint Paul School of Theology, a UMC seminary at the university that offers M.Div. training for and by Native American people. The Native Scholars Project is already under-way and will be completed in June 2014. More information will be shared as development continues.