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St. Francis Honoured with Blackfoot Name

St. Francis Junior High School Honoured with Blackfoot Name
Posted on 04/13/2022
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On Wednesday, April 13, 2022, the school community at St. Francis Junior High School gathered to partake in a smudge, face painting, special naming ceremony, and honour song led by First Nations Elders Tom Little Bear, Shane Little Bear, and Sherry Cross Child.

During the ceremony, both Tom Little Bear and Shane Little Bear shared two stories each about good luck and their hope to imbue this luck on the school and each of the students within the community. Tom Little Bear then went on to discuss his youth and how he was blessed to have a strong upbringing in both his Blackfoot ancestry, as well as the Catholic Faith. He remarked how he attended Ecole St. Mary, St. Francis and Catholic Central High School and how he wishes for all of the students to always “return gracefully” to the school - finding home and belonging at St. Francis Junior High School. He then informed those gathered what the new name for the school would be:

 Naatowapoomahpis - “Our Sacred Home”

Remarks Principal Devon Dempsey, “It’s been over two years since our school community has been able to gather in person and the sheer honour of this event - having a Blackfoot name bestowed upon our school - is the perfect culminating experience bringing us together. I know that the staff at St. Francis really sees our students as family, so this name comes full circle in describing how we feel about our students.”

 This new Blackfoot name will be prominently displayed, reminding all who enter that they are welcome in this sacred home. A livestream of the ceremony can be accessed on the Holy Spirit Catholic School Division's YouTube Channel.

 

For more information about this press release, please contact:
Devon Dempsey, Principal,
St. Francis Junior High School
[email protected]
403-327-3402

Ken Sampson, Superintendent,
Holy Spirit Catholic School Division
[email protected]
(403) 327-9555

 

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