Servant’s Heart and the Sorrento Center

Listening deeply to our Indigenous neighbours as we seek to walk together in the journey of reconciliation – that is an important part of the apology for spiritual harm that was made by Anglican Church of Canada Primate Fred Hiltz in 2019. Deacons, as an ordained ministry within our Church, play a critical role in supporting the listening and the walking that is part of the reconciliation journey.

Primate Fred said this in 2019: “I confess our sin in failing to acknowledge that as First Peoples living here for thousands of years, you had a spiritual relationship with the Creator and with the Land. We did not care enough to learn how your spirituality has always infused your governance, social structures and family life.”

The full text of the apology for spiritual harm is here:

At the Sorrento Centre, we know that listening deeply is a powerful practice. Indigenous knowledge holders such as Kenthen Thomas gift us with stories that reveal wisdom and insights. This summer, Meredith Rusk brought us more stories, and Gerry Thomas brought cultural items – from baskets to furs – so that we could not only see and hear, but also feel, the stories and the practices and the culture.

On October 22, we are offering a very special opportunity for a deep encounter with our Indigenous neighbours, near and far.

The author Richard Wagamese says this: “In the stillness, I am the trees alive with singing. I am the sky everywhere at once. I am…the wind bearing stories across geographies and generations. I am the light everywhere descending. I am my heart evoking drum song. I am my spirit rising. In the smell of these sacred medicines burning, I am my prayers and my meditation, and I am time captured fully in this NOW. I am a traveler on a sacred journey through this one shining day.”

During the full day of community building, adult education and cultural celebration, we will learn about indigenous ways of knowing and our interconnection with nature.

Order-of-Canada recipient, Dual Law program co-founder, and Anishinaabe, Dr. John Borrows, will facilitate conversations on Indigenous Law and apply living principles outdoors with Dr. Rebecca Johnston, Hannah Askews, and students.

Simon Fraser University professor in linguistics and indigenous studies, Dr. Marianne Ignace, will define Secwepemc law and speak on the connection between Language and Land.

In the afternoon, a team of guides will lead drumming, singing, and meditation on lake front land on the unceded territory of the Secwépemc people.

The evening will wind down in community with traditional storytelling by a Secwépemc elder.

The goal of the day is to listen and learn, to engage and be nourished.

The Sorrento Centre serves as a diaconal ministry in the Diocese of Kootenay. We seek to offer rest and relaxation, music and other creative arts, learning and spiritual transformation. Our day of listening and learning on October 22 is called “Mindfulness and Indigenous Law”.

Emerging from the last two years of necessary public health restrictions due to the pandemic, we have adopted a theme for this year, drawing from the Secwepemc word for plenty: Kwtunt!

The salmon run in the fall of 2022 (which peaks in late September and early October) is expected to be a major one. Every four years, the salmon return in great numbers – called a dominant year.

The theme of plenty is woven through our very special day with Dr Borrows and Dr Ignace. There is plenty to hear, plenty to learn, plenty to take in, and plenty to help guide us in the continuing journey of reconciliation.

More information and registration: https:// There is no cost to participate in the day’s events. Meals and accommodation are available as a separate cost to those who want to stay for an evening or the weekend.


  • Michael Shapcott

    The Rev’d Michael Shapcott was ordained a Deacon on the Feast Day of Nicholas Ferrar and serves as Executive Director of the Sorrento Centre Anglican Church of Canada.

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