For several years, St. John’s has partnered with Christ Episcopal Church in Bethany, CT to provide a week-long Bible School for the children of a small town just outside the Rosebud Indian Reservation in western South Dakota. It is a joy to go as members of the same church as the kids we are visiting; their families have been Episcopalian since the Episcopal Church began serving their communities in the late 1800’s. But our purpose goes way beyond teaching Bible stories.
The Lakota people struggle with the worst rates of unemployment, alcoholism and teen suicide in the country.
Their children grow up facing a bleak future. What the Bible teaches us is that God endows every child with divine value and wants to see every child grow up to be healthy and loving, to show the glory of God in their life. By returning to the same community and the same kids year after year, we show them that we see God’s glory in them, and believe there is hope for them in their futures.