First Peoples Initiative

Ryan O'Leary

First Peoples Initiative Leader

  • Missions

In his book, White Man's Gospel, Craig Smith, a Chippewa himself, brings to light the Puritan efforts to "colonize" the First Peoples. It was common for the young children of Native American families to be stolen from their homes and be taken to "boarding schools," where they were not allowed to wear their tribal clothes or speak their tribal language. They cut the hair of the males which culturally was very significant. In short, they were brainwashing the children to become like the Puritan Christians. Girls suffered abuse even more as they (under cover of darkness) were assaulted by the same people who were supposedly trying to "Christianize" them. There is a vast hurt that each generation feels.

It is through this lens that First Peoples view the world.

It is through that lens and worldview that we invite you to learn more about a new Converge Initiative to reach these people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

The worldview of the First Peoples flows out of the many offenses they endured by settlers in the new world. Native Americans looked very different, dressed very different, and talked very different than those arriving on ships from all other parts of the globe. History shows that when one nation invades another there is bloodshed. As time progressed, the new world's military advanced their desires to conquer the new land and, in the process, committed the genocide of whole tribes.

History shows that the First Peoples were labeled as "savages," and they were feared by the settlers. Soon there were peace agreements or treaties drawn up to attempt civility between the two groups. However, in the "white mans" desire to conquer, they moved west, broke treaty after treaty, and continued to eliminate entire tribes to the point that the number of First Peoples were thought to be as low as 200,000 in the entire United States.

Join our goal to reach one of these least-reached people’s groups. God is on the move and calling people to Himself within these tribes like never before.

Ryan O'Leary, First Peoples Initiative Leader

First Peoples Initiative Leader

Additional articles by Ryan O'Leary