Summer 2016 Native Ministries Consortium Courses

The Native Ministries Consortium at Vancouver School of Theology offers Summer School courses that are nonsectarian and interdisciplinary.  Courses examine historical and social data, literary-oral traditions, artistic and other cultural aspects of Indigenous religions.  Courses also examine the philosophical and theological dimensions of Indigenous  thought.

Download the course descriptions for summer 20162016 NMC Summer School courses-1

Engage Difference!

Engage Difference!, a course on Deepening Understanding for Intercultural Ministry, offered by the Canadian Churches Forum, will be held at the Sandy-Saulteaux Spiritual Centre from May 9-13, 2016.

an intentional learning community                                                                                                                                          focused on faith, heart, mind, and skills                                                                                                                                    for the art of intercultural ministry

DUIM 2015 at SSSCDownload the brochure, or get more info, register, and find future dates:

  • Ecumenical and interactive program
  • Practical ideas to use in your own context
  • Nurture cultural relevance, understanding, and awareness in your community!

Bursaries are available.

The Canadian Churches Forum –, 416-924-9351
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Spring 2015 Newsletter

Read about Aboriginal Ministries in the United Church, Living into Right Relations, our Partnership with Centre for Christian Studies, Five Generations at Graduation, Upcoming Learning Circle and more in our latest newsletter: Spring 2015

Digging Deeper into the Bible

Shirley McLaren recently attended the “Introduction to the Bible” course at Sandy Saulteaux.  The first time Shirley took a course at SSSC it was for credit in her Designated Lay Ministry program.  This time it was for continuing education.  Here is Shirley’s review of the biblical learning:

The Introduction to the Bible week at Sandy Saulteaux Spiritual Centre was very interesting.  It is a great learning atmosphere as well as a sacred space.  All people are respectful of one another and can enter into discussion freely.

I enjoyed the Bible Studies which allows participants to dig deeper into their thoughts as well as listen to other’s opinions on the same passage of scripture.  It was a new learning for me how different cultures could interpret scriptures differently based on their experiences in life.

I was reminded of the themes that weave throughout the Bible.  Some of these include creation, liberation, land and people, and covenants.  As I read scripture now, I can see these themes and how they relate to other stories on the same theme.

The Bible is made up of stories.  The elders relate stories to Aboriginal people.  In my mind, these two connect.  Our Bible is like stories that are passed down from people who lived generations before us.  In the gospels, stories are told up to four times but each time a bit different.  I often question what the truth is and not take the story for its worth.  Truth or fiction?   It doesn’t matter, as long as I understand the lesson from the story.  The Bible is not made up of answers.

The Bible and Original Instructions go hand in hand and actually overlap.  All people can learn from both of them.  They both teach about life and not so much about law.  It is important that I take the stories from the Bible and make them fit situations in my community and church.

The hand-outs that we received in this course were very valuable.  They offer a useful resource for finding information very quickly. 

Thank you for another interesting week of continuing education.  To be in community in this Aboriginal Learning Circle is valuable in itself.  It is about building relationships, being in community and understanding what it is like to be the minority in a group.  These lessons are invaluable to me and only help to make me more understanding and a better person.

 – Shirley McLaren

Winter 2013-2014 Newsletter

The newsletter features an article by Adrian Jacobs titled “The Earth is Our Faculty”, as well as articles about the Wisdom Scripture Learning Circle, the Basic Pastoral Care Learning Circle, the Feast for Friends, the power of healing in worship, recruiting students, and welcoming the special rapporteur on the rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Check out the Winter 2014 Newsletter.


SSSC students in Haida Gwaii

Sandy-Saulteaux Spiritual Centre students on their Global Awareness trip to Haida Gwaii. This is the beginning of their trip and is taken at the BC Museum of Anthropology

Sandy-Saulteaux students at the BC Museum of Anthropology