Meet Métis leader David Skene. David is our first graduate from the MA in Indigenous Community Development Studies offered jointly with Acadia Divinity College at Acadia University. Together with his wife, Liz, David lives in southern Ontario, where he works with YWAM. His ministry focus has been the development of community building activities for urban Indigenous folks and international teams fostering holistic community engagement.
“It’s interesting how my life has taken a fairly significant bend in the road. I could never have imagined when I started with NAIITS, that I would end up doing what I am now!”
David has witnessed, first hand, the challenges encountered by Indigenous folks trying to figure life out in the urban setting – struggling to make sense of their history, hoping for a better future. His many years of ministry with YWAM had taught him that communities should be the focus of his work – not simply isolated individuals.
And, that’s where NAIITS came in. With the scholarships and support we and others provided, on May 14th at Acadia University and June 1st at our annual NAIITS symposium graduation, David takes the walk – the first graduate from the Acadia/NAIITS MA in Indigenous Community Development.
If you are interested in what NAIITS is all about, or in studying with us, please join us at our annual symposium on Indigenous Theology and Ministry, held this year at George Fox University in Newberg, OR, June 1-3, 2017.
Check us out online at www.naiits.com.
Want to help other Indigenous students make a difference through education and training with NAIITS? Give today to the Elijah Harper Scholarship Fund and you can make a difference in the life of one student - and through them, Indigenous communities! DONATE HERE!
Above: Marc Salomé Levasseur receiving his certificate - with Patrick Brennan, Executive Director McGill’s Institute for the Study of International Development at McGill University.On October 26 to 30, one of our NAIITS students who is also an Indigenous Pathways board member, Marc Levasseur, had been invited to complete a special Executive Certificate on the subject of Reconciliation, conflict prevention and the promotion of a more inclusive society with the Institute for the Study of International Development at McGill University.
The background subject was the crisis that is facing the Canada in the relationship between indigenous and non-indigenous population and the need for reconciliation. Very strategic speakers and well-involved teachers came as Dr. Marie Wilson from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, the former Prime Minister Joe Clark and the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs of Quebec, Geoffrey Kelly only to name a few.
As discussed throughout the course, Christians who work to re-Indigenize their spirituality and fight back the assimilation that came within the Western Evangelization are part of the front line to work on the reconciliation throughout Canada. Reconciliation would not come with homogenization or assimilation of the Canadian or American society but through the acceptance of our diversity and one of them is well expressed in the Native Christianity.
Indigenous Pathways is one of the organizations who desire to see reconciliation coming. That certificate has also been a good moment of connection between our organization, McGill University and other participants.
The Board of Trustees, Faculty, Staff of Acadia Divinity College, Acadia University, Wolfville, NS presented Rev. Dr. Terry LeBlanc with a Doctor of Divinity Honorary last Sunday May 10, 2015.
Terry is Mi’kmaq and Acadian in his 43rd year of marriage to Bev. He is the father of twin daughters and one son. Jeanine (married to Dan) and Jennifer are actively involved in the Indigenous community through their educational studies, vocations and churches. From his residence in the Philippines, Matt directs a community development framed ministry to Indigenous youth and young adults that is active in various regions of the globe including through his colleagues and fellow staff in Canada.
The founding Chair and current Director of Indigenous Pathways, and Director of the North American Institute for Indigenous Theological Studies (NAIITS). Terry also oversees iEmergence and My People, both of which are focused on building capacity with Indigenous people. In addition to 37 years of grassroots work in the Native North American and global Indigenous context, Terry has taught at various colleges, seminaries and universities. Reflecting his commitment to Christian education from an Indigenous perspective, Terry also serves as a sessional or adjunct faculty member at George Fox University and Evangelical Seminary, Acadia Divinity College and Tyndale University College and Seminary.
Author of numerous articles, theological papers and assorted book chapters, Terry has won several awards for his varied writings. In June 2010, for his work on the creation of NAIITS, Terry became the 28th recipient of the Dr. E.H. Johnson Memorial Award for Innovation in Mission.