What to Expect
The drum at the center of the room is reserved exclusively for the singers. We do not permit anyone who has not been previously approved to touch the drum. Of special note, men are never to touch the women’s drum and women are never to touch the men’s drum.
We invite anyone who wishes to be a part of our friendship dance. Holding hands around the drum we form a circle and do an easy “step-together, step-together” dance moving in a clockwise direction while those at the drum sing. At the end of the song we raise our hands up in the air while someone says a prayer. We end the prayer with the Kiowa word “aho” which means thank you.
We celebrate communion on the first Sunday of the month using gluten free crackers and grape juice. Everyone is welcome to participate, even children.
With the Sage Smudge, our most common form of prayerful preparation, a prayer warrior fans your body—front and back—with smoke from smoldering sage while s/he prays to Creator for your clarity of mind, the strengthening of your faith, the Lord's protection over you, and guidance in your spiritual walk. This takes place outdoors on our west porch in good weather.
For those with lung concerns (and for everyone when the weather is poor) we provide a Water Blessing station. In this tradition each person offers prayers while pouring water into his/her own hands. The prayer continues as s/he brings wet fingers and palms to head (mind), face (soul), arms (strength), and heart (emotions). This takes place in the northwest corner of our Great Room (main level).
Our Medicine Wheel colors represent different things to different peoples and Native Nations among us. Some of those include:
• The four stages in the circle of life,
• The four skin colors of the world
• The four ways of loving God: body, mind, soul, heart.
The blessing basket is a time for everyone to receive a blessing by putting their hands on the outside of the basket while someone prays over them. Church members are encouraged to place their financial gifts in support of the church in the basket. All in attendance are asked to commit to a gift of time and abilities to Creator. This is done privately between you and Creator.
Many Native American people hold the circle to be sacred—a uniting of spirit and thought. At Dayspring Native American United Methodist Church we are no different, so we worship in a circle with the Spirit Drum at the center. After the drum's call to worship and opening song, we gather for a friendship dance around the drum and singers, inviting all who wish to dance a prayer with us to join hands. Together we create one circle that we may be of one mind, so that with one heart we may speak our prayers of adoration and welcome.
When we share prayer joys and concerns, everyone gets an opportunity to speak. As the Talking Stick is passed through the congregation, any/all are welcome to share as the Talking Stick gives each the floor.
Our worship service begins with a drum strike, a spoken prayer by a drum member, and prayer song by the drum singers. Anyone familiar with the song may join in the singing from wherever they are sitting in the room.
When pastor asks a question during the sermon, she welcomes any answers that you may want to give. She uses the Common English Bible and welcomes you to follow along. If you don’t have your own Bible to use, you may use one of ours, and take it home when you leave.
If you know the final “dismissal song” the drum is singing, you may join in at any time. At a signal from one of the singers or our pastor, we gather around the drum to form a hand-holding circle. We stretch our circle to include everyone in the room including the elderly who are sitting in recliners. Pastor concludes our worship service with a final blessing while we hold the circle with raised, clasped hands.
We make a group prayer tie which we will burn in a Spirit Fire at a later time.