Sorry Services And Pilgrim Walks

A men's group on the edge of Australian bush land at Buderim has been involved in Indigenous reconciliation for some time. The owners (descendants of the land-grabbers) have established a memorial garden in their dedicated Nature Refuge to which their new  Aborigine Partners, Kabbarli come once a year to plant memorial trees, and to remember their loved ones. Heather Johnston writes: 'Our ancestors were first and early settlers on the Darling Downs and Roma area so were involved in the dispossession of the Indigenous people in those areas. At one of Kabbarli's memorial days my sister and I had the opportunity to say our family sorrys as part of the proceedings. We have now been invited to say sorry as part of the opening ceremony for a centre which will store and display Indigenous artefacts at Roma on December the 1st. We are honoured. We have also recently started to visit Toowoomba to say sorry there and to pray for healing of the land and reconciliation.

My sister and I have decided to attend a reconciliation service organised by the Anglican and Catholic churches at St Luke's Toowoomba  and to then make a pilgrimage from Toowoomba to Roma for the centre opening on 1.12. We will visit Christian, and Indigenous sites on the way and pray for reconciliation. We hope that it might be possible to have another gathering at Roma where non indigenous people are able to say sorry for past injustices.

We organized a Sorry Service at St Marks Buderim in 2009 which was helpful. A few weeks ago Archbishop Phillip and Fr Bruce Boase (the secretary of NATSIAC) took part in a commemorative walk, and an ecumenical service at a reunion of the local Indigenous community.
Posted at 12:55pm on 30th November 2012
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