October 21, 2012

Playing Indian to celebrate Kateri

Celebrate Blessed Kateri’s Canonization with Kids!

By LacyThe date of Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha’s canonization is going to be October 21, 2012! (Yay!) The cool thing about soon-to-be-Saint Kateri is that she was Native American. This opens up all kinds of crafting possibilities! Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha’s feast day is July 14. We made some fun, Native American dress up crafts to celebrate St. Kateri’s canonization with my kids!

We were inspired by some crafts over on Catholic Inspired. Jennifer has directions on how to make this Native American vest, Christian symbols headband (with free download), and this Cross and Beads necklace. Aren’t they cute?! We also made an Indian vest from paper grocery bags, and a Native American headband to match.
Debbie Reese's response in her American Indians in Children's Literature blog:The Catholics-playing-Indian activities are well-intentioned, but ignorant and ought to be set aside. As a society, we need not do these sorts of activities. We see it a lot in the context of "Indian" mascots for sports teams. There's a lot more awareness of stereotyping in that context, and a lot of schools have abandoned those stereotypical mascots. That same awareness--apparently--needs to be developed amongst Catholics who dress their kids up in stereotypical attire to be "Saint Kateri."Comment:  Reese is more polite than I'd be. This activity is stupid and ignorant.

As Lacy should know, playing dress up is wrong when adults do it and it's wrong when kids do it. The actual Kateri didn't look like this, so the costume is stereotypical and insulting to Indians.

For more on Indian wannabes, see Sumter Native American Family Tribe and British "Apache" Is an Embarrassment.

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