There are new "National [insert cause here] Day" days every day, it seems. But September 30 is one, though recent, that no Canadian ought ignore.
September 30 marks a relatively new "cause day" in Canada. Since 2013, the day has been set aside as "Orange Shirt Day", a day to remember and honour the survivors of a dark chapter in Canadian history: residential schools. The Canadian government and members of the Christian Church were both complicit in "aggressive assimilation" of Indigenous people, especially children, taking them forcibly out of their homes and sending them to boarding schools to try to incorporate them into Canadian and Christian "culture". As a Christian and pastor, I'm compelled to bring a few words to the day from a Christian perspective.
"A theologian of glory calls evil good and good evil. A theologian of the cross calls the thing what it actually is."
- Martin Luther, Heidelberg Disputation, Thesis 21
Christians cannot call the horrific treatment of Indigenous people at residential schools at the hands of Christians and the Canadian government anything but what it was: sin. God never calls us to spread His Word by cruelty and abuse, but only by proclaiming what He's given us to proclaim: His Law - which names sin for what it is - and His Gospel - which offers the same grace and mercy that He has first shown us in Jesus.