New Signs of Hope

  – from Rev. Dick Fylling, Annual Meeting Planning Work Group member

New Signs of HopeA few weeks ago, I wrote a piece titled “A Recipe for Tragedy”, an article regarding the epidemic of youth suicides at the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in Oglala Lakota County in southwest South Dakota; so I was very pleased to read of two signs of hope for that community.

From Washington, D.C., one article stated that the Pine Ridge Reservation was one of eight new “Promise Zones” chosen by the White House for assistance to areas of extreme poverty. These eight, which included Indianapolis, Minneapolis and St. Louis, will be provided government help. They were among 136 applications from 36 states plus Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C.

Pine Ridge Indian Reservation is home to about 35,000 people; and suffers from a 21 percent unemployment rate and a poverty rate of about 50 percent.

Another article regarding the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation also appeared. James Pine, a young man 23 years old who resides at Rapid City, South Dakota, has bee awarded a $10,000 grant to start a youth fitness camp this summer.

The program will be called Lakota Forever Running and Fitness. It will serve each of the eight districts of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.    As we all eagerly await our Minnesota Conference Annual Meeting June 12-14, it is good amid the many stories of anguish – from Ferguson to Baltimore – to find “New Signs of Hope” for God’s children.

  – from Rev. Dick Fylling, Annual Meeting Planning Work Group member