Points of View – National Human Rights Photography Exhibition
Tipi and Catholic Church
I took this photo while walking from the Opaskwayak Cree Nation (OCN) toward the town of The Pas. The juxtaposition of the tipi (set up in Devon Park) to the Catholic church struck me as an example of how Indigenous people in the region are reconciling their past history with organized religions that were involved in the Indian Residential School era. The Sacred Heart Roman Catholic School (1916) once stood in this area and the Bishops House, Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Cathedral, and St. Anthony's Hospital continue to be historic landmarks near the river. However, due the work of OCN and the town of The Pas, the past is being reconciled with the reclamation of past traditions and teachings that were once considered obsolete. The tipi, with its many teachings and historic symbolism, depicts the relationship of inclusion and sharing with the people of The Pas. Indeed, when the early church elementary schools opening in the early 1800's, we can be sure that parents set up their tipis nearby to be close to their children.