Santa Visits Saddle Lake 2018 (video)

miyo-manitôwi-kîsikanisik onîhcîkiskwapiwinihk!

In a brilliant display of mutual cultural appreciation, Santa made his first visit of 2018 to Saddle Lake Cree Nation in Alberta this week. The kids appreciated him so much, we can’t even hear what the drum group was playing for his big entrance (but I think I hear some moms trilling)! I’ve watched it three times so far, and I’m still grinning.

As Mary Cardinal Collins told me, “This is how we decolonize Santa. I see all these posts about decolonizing Christmas. We have always borrowed the idea, but made it our own with Cree ways: humor and generosity, giving. Ever since I can remember, I used to get new moccasins for midnight mass, and we had words in cree: ê-akotamakawiyan ‘gifts were hung up’ (referring to the tree).”

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