Lake Superior Day 2010
Under the Shadow of Eagle Rock:
A Day of Prayer and Fasting
July 18, 2010: Day of interfaith prayer and fasting for Lake Superior Day to Honor Eagle Rock, Lake Superior and praying for the protection of the Yellow Dog Watershed from pollution created by sulfide mining
Lake Superior Day is held every year on the third Sunday in July
Lake Superior Day 2010 events:
Northland College and Lake Superior Day
(Big Bay, Michigan) – Residents of the Yellow Dog Watershed, whose tranquil life in nature has already been degraded by preliminary mining activities in the area, are inviting everyone to join Native Americans and leaders of various faiths for a day of prayer and fasting, this Sunday near Eagle Rock to honor Lake Superior.
The Lake Superior Day (Sun., July 18) event near Big Bay in north Marquette County is named “Under the Shadow of Eagle Rock: A Day of Prayer and Fasting.”
Residents of the Yellow Dog Watershed hope the public will join in prayers for the protection of the environment where Kennecott Eagle Minerals is building a nickel and copper mine.
The event will run from sunrise to sunset with rituals, prayers, meditations and ceremonies every two hours on the hour.
Jan Zender and Rochelle Dale spent 21 quiet years living on the pristine Yellow Dog Watershed, but the married couple’s peaceful existence has been shattered by roaring trucks and other mining construction activities.
“Kennecott has really stepped up the pace on the plains, and they are not in one place – they are all over the place,” said Rochelle Dale, a member of the St. Mary Catholic Church in Bay Bay. “They have test sites now on the Pinnacle Falls Road, two miles from Eagle Rock.”
“It’s devastating and degrading,” said Dale, who raised her two children to respect the Yellow Dog Plains, Ian, 25, and Kalil, 18. “Riding a bike,” she says, “you can hear the mine trucks and machines everywhere you go.”
“This is a part of the land that we love and the reason we live here, and the construction is turning it into something else – it will never be the same,” said Dale, who lives along the Yellow Dog River about 6 miles downstream from the mine.
“My husband and I and some of the other residents have invited members of the different faith communities to fast and pray with us” for the protection of Lake Superior and its tributaries, she said.
“There will be prayers for the earth and prayers for all people who are affected by these kinds of things across the world,” Dale said.
Representatives from the interfaith community will hold prayers including Lutheran, Buddhist, Roman Catholic, Unitarian, United Methodist, and Jewish traditions.
Members of the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community will pray to stop the desecration of Eagle Rock, which has been the site of Ojibwa religious ceremonies for centuries, and for the protection of Lake Superior from possible mine-related pollution like sulfuric acid, a byproduct of sulfide mining.
The public can participate in a sweat lodge “in the Lakota tradition” and in Yoga and meditation.
“This event will acknowledge and celebrate values other than those represented by the bottom line on an accountant’s ledger,” said Rev. Tesshin Paul Lehmberg, head priest of Lake Superior Zendo, a Zen Buddhist temple in Marquette. “We will acknowledge and celebrate the long view, the one that sees past the next fiscal quarter down to the seventh generation of our heirs and beyond.”
Those present “will acknowledge and celebrate the inestimable spiritual worth of the Yellow Dog watershed and its people, and the pure, ancient waters of Lake Superior, which lie downstream and which bless us all,” Lehmberg said.
“There is much more than an economic equation going on in the public debate about the proposed sulfide mine,” said event co-organizer Rev. Jon Magnuson, a Lutheran pastor. “The quality of water, the forests, and the claims of one of the Upper Peninsula’s major Indian tribes that this is a sacred place, beg to be heeded by people of conscience.”
“Sunday’s day of prayer and fasting will be a time to lift up prayers for Kennecott employees and the region’s people whose lifestyle is threatened by this wealthy international mining company Rio Tinto, which continues to hold one of the worst records of environmental pollution and human rights violations in the world,” Magnuson said. “Spiritual dimensions to current controversies around the environment too often go unrecognized.
“There are bulldozers – but there are also prayers and songs and we intend that they will echo out over the forests of the Yellow Dog on Lake Superior Day 2010, under the shadow of Eagle Rock,” Magnuson said.
The event will be held adjacent to the Kennecott leased property line off the Triple A Road.
Markers will be posted from the corner of County Road 550 and County Road 510.
Eagle Rock is a 45-minute drive from Marquette. Directions are posted on the Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve website.
For more information contact Rev. Magnuson at 906-228-5494 or Rev. Lehmberg at 906-226-6407.
Directions will be posted at:
Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve:
Rev. Jon W. Magnuson, MDiv, MSW, ACSW
Nonprofit Cedar Tree Institute
403 East Michigan Street
Marquette, MI 49855
Rev. Tesshin Paul Lehmberg
Lake Superior Zendo (Zen Buddhist)
2222 Longyear Ave.
Marquette, MI 49855
Rochelle Dale, Yellow Dog Watershed resident