Dear Friends,

Please find attached a document (below) answering many of the questions we are receiving about liturgical protocol after the death of the Queen. This will inform and assist you this Sunday and in the days ahead.

As we give thanks for the life of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, may we remember that in perhaps her last act of grace and compassion towards the people of Canada, she sent a note extending her condolences to those who had lost loved ones in the attacks on James Smith Cree Nation and in nearby Weldon, Saskatchewan. As we honour her and give thanks for her life, may we also remember in prayer those who have died as a result of that tragedy.

I want to offer you some wise counsel from Indigenous leaders in our community with regards to marking these recent murders and remembering those individuals and their communities in prayer. As you will know, most of the victims were from James Smith Cree Nation. Their names for remembrance are:

Thomas Burns

Carol Burns

Gregory Burns

Lydia Gloria Burns

Bonnie Burns

Earl Burns Sr.

Lana Head

Christian Head

Robert Sanderson

Wesley Petterson

May we also hold in prayer the family of Damien Sanderson and Myles Sanderson. 

Many have asked if music or drumming tributes may be used. At this time, we are advised that naming and periods of silence are the best way to honour these people. Anything else may well be received as cultural misappropriation. You are encouraged to reach out to Indigenous centres, communities, and leaders in your own location — to partner with them — if you wish to offer anything more.

Thank you for your prayers for so many who are grieving at this time in the life of our Nation. Know that these prayers and your love and compassion are being felt by those who need them now.

In the peace and hope of the resurrection,