We Quakers of Great Falls are connected to the Standing Rock Sioux Nation by the Missouri River. We are connected by our concern for protecting clean water and a healthful environment for future generations. We are connected by our recognition of the power of prayer in the Spirit-led life. We are connected by our common humanity in the great web of life.
Mindful of our connection, we stand in solidarity with the people encamped at Standing Rock.
We recognize the right of the native people who oppose the Dakota Access Pipeline to tell their own story. We therefore recognize the name Water Protectors and reject the term “protesters” in this case. We recognize the need for greater respect for the cultures and sovereignty of indigenous peoples, their right to self-determination, their right to live peacefully and unmolested on their own lands, their right to secure a livable environment for themselves and their posterity, and their right to connect to the Divine with the prayer and ceremony of their own traditions in the locations sacred to them.
We join with other faith communities in repudiating the Doctrine of Discovery.
We understand urgency of the climate crisis, attributable in large part to the burning of fossil fuels. We know that, while we all use gasoline and energy, humanity must reduce as quickly as possible the amount of carbon and other warming agents that human activities are injecting into the world’s atmosphere.
We thank the Water Protectors for their courageous work which benefits us all. We thank the Standing Rock Sioux for extending hospitality and care to their camps. We encourage Friends to prayerfully consider supporting the Water Protectors financially, spiritually, materially, politically, and in all other ways open to us as the Spirit leads.
We stand with Standing Rock.
Recognizing our continuing concern about the curtailment of civil liberties in our country, the Montana Gathering of Friends (Quakers) states its opposition to the USA Patriot Act. We believe that this Act:
This Act reflects a spirit of fear and mistrust that is the antithesis of the Spirit of Love to which we are all called. Our true security comes from building a just society.
Friends urge all citizens to contact their elected officials to encourage them to work actively to repeal the USA Patriot Act and to seek to protect the fundamental rights of all people. Friends also urge our community organizations and governments to take public positions opposing the USA Patriot Act, recognizing that the city governments of Missoula, Dillon, and Bozeman have already passed such resolution.
When MGOF finds itself called as a body to witness, a Minute of that testimony is recorded and distributed.