Who’s Land is it? The Social Impact of the Wet’suwet’en Nation Conflict

In my research, I chose to focus on the Coastal GasLink news article informing us that the Indigenous groups signed historic equity option agreements with TC Energy on Coastal GasLink, and the TheTyee News article, A Pipeline, A River, and an Indigenous Nation. The contrast between the media sources reviewed documentation from the BC Government, Coastal GasLink, First Peoples Law, and media from the Wet’suwet’en’s Fact Check documents to show the Band’s views of signing the documents to allow the pipeline to run through Northern BC. Other sources are used to reveal the truth and the social impact this has on the Wet’suwet’en people. Their rising conflict has been pushed by the Government, who imposed upon the Nation empty promises in appearance with financial and reconciliation ties with GasLink, Government Provincially and Federally. Their intentions prove the Colonialism and oppression from a false sense of ‘union’ when it has done the opposite by creating lasting detrimental effects on the water sources from the drilling to further oppressing the Wet’suwet’en people who are nearby the camps where they are working. This shows the opposite of any reconciliation. I conclude that the families of both sides of the Wet’s’wet’en people will be significantly affected by the pipeline and that the Nation is trying to protect the Earth from catastrophic damage this will have on food, water and world impact that will affect Canada Nation as well.

The voices of the indigenous people cry out through the living water, salmon, trees and lush forage in anguish over the colonialism that has shut out the title owners of the 22000 sq km of land in Northern British Columbia that belongs to the Wet’suwet’en Nation. The band on the reserves signed agreements approving the building of the natural gas pipeline under the disguise of progress and prosperity. However, this has caused a divide within the nation. The social impact bears deeper scars on the Wet’suwet’en people who oppose or approve of building the pipeline.

“The opportunity was made available to all 20 Indigenous communities holding existing agreements with Coastal GasLink and is an important step to the true partnership through equity ownership in the Project.”

(Coastal GasLink, 2022)

First, I question how GasLink can create a true partnership through equity ownership in the Project without having any title ownership. The 20 Indigenous communities that signed and agreed to a partnership with GasLink do not have the authority to make such a partnership agreement when the title of ownership belongs to the Wet’suwet’en nation hereditary chiefs.

“We call on the federal and provincial governments to meet with the Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs immediately and to address this issue in a manner that upholds the principle of reconciliation, the authority of the law of the Wet’suwet’en, the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the honour of the Crown.”

(Joffe, Avocat/Lawyer 2022)

The relationship within the Wet’suwet’en nation is splitting apart from the inside. Colonialism has been the driving factor of what moves a nation toward standing together or splitting apart. The government has blindsided the elected chiefs on the reserves by expounding on the division of documents of law. This division has strained relationships and reconciliation further when there has been deep internal conflict between the traditional governing system of Hereditary Chiefs and the elected chief and councils that follow the Indian Act. Again the Federal and Provincial government has taken advantage of the situation by using their power and money to override historical colonialism and make it look like reconciliation is the goal. However, they get the documents signed and begin building the pipeline without negotiating discussions with the traditional landowners.

Michel Bride, the Executive Director and General Council for the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, spoke about how to solve the Wet’suwet’en peoples’ issue. He said to move the pipeline elsewhere than on their land, he said GasLink was going through Kamloops, but Kamloops did not want to put the pipeline through the Cemetery. Michel Bride also stated that instead, they are going through the territory of land owned by the Hereditary Chief’s Wet’suwet’en nation, which would involve building through their traditional gravesites. There needs to be a working dialogue to ensure all sides are involved in keeping relationships between nations and governments peaceful.

Two news stories will challenge you on how land and nations divide and what it looks like. For example, here is a CBC news article that writes how Coastal GasLink was warned more than 50 times concerning environmental violations during pipeline construction. How? There needs to be a better safeguard of sensitive waterways from sediment and erosion on the 670 Km pipeline route. The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change said they issued a total of 51 warnings, 16 orders and two fines with a penalty of more than $240,000 for repeated non-compliance. (Trumpener, 2022)

If we take a look at the news on the Coastal GasLink update, you can see how much they have accomplished with the immense work they are doing,

“Collaboration drives solution to meet world’s clean energy needs. To date, Coastal GasLink has installed more than 470 km of pipe across the 670 km route, and steady progress is made each day. Cumulatively, our team has spent 38 million hours working on this Project, with more than 6,000 people employed at its peak.”

(Coastal GasLink Update 2022)

At the same time, we have discord among the Wet’suwet’en people who are being bombarded with the impacts of the very GasLink workers preventing them from their duties. This is what Hosgood said in her article in The Tyee; she writes that back in February’s attack on the drill site, Coastal GasLink put in place round-the-clock security surveillance at the camp,

“Unist’ot’en Healing Centre, which has not actively interfered with pipeline activities since arrests in February 2020, also said in recent social media posts that residents are under constant surveillance by RCMP and Coastal GasLink security.”

(Hosgood, 2022)

Does this sound familiar? Whose territory is this that these articles speak of? When we discuss nations, we discuss the land we stand on out of honor and respect for our history of those who were denied the right to live freely on the land they rightfully own. This is not the way of the Wet’suwet’en people, and the government and the GasLink pipeline drill sites and worker’s camps are impacting families and livelihoods on their reserves,

“They record everything we do, the post said. “They recorded our elders and children changing out of their rafting gear & swimsuits after a cultural trip down the river. They follow us when we harvest & hunt. They record every visitor, and we cannot sit at our own Widzin Kwa without being watched by strange men with binoculars.”

(Hosgood, 2022)

The effects this has socially on a long historical background of discrimination and violence against them, they have stood their ground, still pushing forward while embracing land, water, and forestry in gratitude for the abundance of natural food sources; how is this impacting the nation as a whole?

Bevin Wirzba, the Coastal GasLink President, said,
“It’s an immense privilege to be able to work on a project that is building such an extraordinary legacy that will be enjoyed by so many.” Chief Mueller concludes, “Not only is this project providing jobs and economic benefits to local and Indigenous communities; this critical energy infrastructure will deliver energy security to the world for decades to come.”

(Mueller, 2022)

Meanwhile, CBC news reports, “A ministry spokesperson told CBC News in an email that sediment and turbidity can damage water quality and fish habitat, reduce sunlight in the water, and settle on wildlife and vegetation. Nevertheless, Coastal GasLink denies responsibility for Fraser Lake’s environmental violation.” The news piece shows a plume of brown sediment in Fraser Lake in April 2022 that is visible in an aerial photo from an environmental assessment officer’s inspection who was reporting on the Coastal GasLink pipeline.

“I woke up and tilled the land, I chopped the wood and structured a plan to foster strength in the elements of earth, water and air to grow in youth to foster and care. There is a way to use the natural resources, but when the salmon and water, and the people are at risk, without consent something is missed. Will it come to this? A stench of fluid kills the grass, my peoples’ stomachs burned from gas, the air is stale, and they wonder why the pipelines drilled and the salmon die.”

(Reeves 2022)

Reconciliation happens between two people, between two nations, this could mean Canada and the Wet’suwet’en nation forgiveness can happen provided the harm stops. Where does that leave room for reconciliation if a nation is divided and the land is torn apart? I looked up the word reconciliation. According to the Cambridge Dictionary, it means “a situation in which two people or groups of people become friendly again after they have argued: it took hours of negotiations to bring about a reconciliation between two sides.” There can be no reconciliation unless the Federal and Provincial governments negotiate with the hereditary chiefs and work on a peaceful resolution.

This can only occur through the desire to want the best for the other. The elders today are the heart of our history. If we do not understand the culture, the flow that moves their lives in connection to the water and land of the Wet’suwet’en people, then we lose a connection to look past our greed and witness the commonality we have with each other. Then something damaging happens a nation divides in itself when unity has been lost, identity has been stripped, and the cries of the land of the Indigenous people bleed out from the red earth. The government says:

“Benefits Agreements. To date, more than 90% of First Nations along B.C.’s proposed northern pipeline routes have signed agreements. That’s 63 agreements with 29 First Nations for four proposed natural gas pipeline projects: Prince Rupert Gas Transmission, Coastal GasLink, Pacific Trail Pipeline, Westcoast Connector Gas Transmission. The Province has also completed a benefits agreement with Haisla Nation to construct an LNG facility and marine shipping terminal on their territory in Kitimat.”


What are the benefits? The Province requires that the proposals include the following:

“Include guarantees of jobs, and training opportunities for British Columbia, provide a fair return for our resource, Respect and partner with First Nations’ Protect our air, land, and water, including living up to our climate commitments, Benefits communities.”


There is always a viewpoint we can shift from our view and judgements to see it from a shift in the window of perception. Sometimes, it takes more than sweat and labour to build a nation from the ground up. It takes respect and gratitude and wanting better for our neighbour and environment.

“One of the first arguments we keep seeing in social media and the press is those who support the chiefs’ erroneous claim that only the Hereditary Chiefs have the authority to negotiate land claims. It appears that they think the more they say it, the more it becomes the truth; however, it’s far from the truth.”

(Two Feathers, 2020)

That quote was from the Viewpoint from the North. I can see it is not easy to trust the media. We have to go to the roots. One person at a time, to create a socially sound community by listening and trying to find the commonality in governing relations to make a change for the better. This cannot happen when money and power are what are being planted in the fields of the territories.

Who’s land is it? The Indian Act says… The First People’s law says…The Bands on the reserve says… you say…. The media say….the government say… GasLink say… Let us go back to the basics,

“Chief George Desjarlais of Treaty 8 put it this way in his testimony to the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples: “We are treaty people…We agreed to share our lands and territories with the Crown. We did not sell or give up our rights to the land and territories. We agreed to share our custodial responsibility for the land with the Crown. We did not abdicate it to the Crown.” (Asch 2021)

(Asch, Borrows, 2018)

Who do the Wet’suwet’en people belong to? Is it by the people who govern them or by the laws imposed upon them from years of dehumanization by state systems? What will the pipeline cost from the social impact this has made on the people and their families? We must respect the lands we tread on, and if it isn’t given to me, I should befriend the one who owns it and work together despite the power of state systems that aim to break community and divide people. Those who live under a nation’s territory must seek to build peace in a world that strips the nation of its dignity.


Asch, Michael, John, Borrows, James Tully, October 2018, Resurgence and Reconciliation: Indigenous-Settler Relations and Earth Teachings, Published imprint University of Toronto Press https://utorontopress.com/9781487523275/resurgence-and-reconciliation/

Coastal GasLink, March 10, 2022, Indigenous groups sign historic equity option agreements with TC Energy on Coastal GasLink

Hosgood, Amanda Follett, 2022, A Pipeline, A River, and an Indigenous Nation,
TheTyee A Pipeline, a River and an Indigenous Nation | The Tyee

Joffe, Paul, Avocat/Lawyer, First Peoples Law, Open Letter to Prime Minister Trudeau and Premier Horgan Re: We’’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs’ Opposition to Coastal GasLink Pipeline Project (2020) https://www.firstpeopleslaw.com/public-education/blog/open-letter-to-prime-minister-trudeau-and-premier-horgan-re-wetsuweten-hereditary-chiefs-opposition-to-coastal-gaslink-pipeline-project

Paikin, Steve, The Agenda, YouTube, Wet’suwet’en: A Nation Divided

Paikin, Steve, The Agenda, YouTube, Wet’suwet’en: A Nation Divided

Provincial BC Government, Liquefield Natural Gas, Indigenous Peoples and LNG https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/industry/natural-gas-oil/lng/indigenous-peoples-and-lng

Trumpener, Betsy, 2022, CBC News, Coastal GasLink warned more than 50 times over environmental violations during pipeline construction, https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/coastal-gaslink-pipeline-environmental-violations-warnings-1.6570441

Two Feathers, 2020, Wet’suwet’en Fact Check, Bands Authority vs. Hereditary Chiefs Authority regarding Land Claims, Bands Authority vs. Hereditary Chiefs Authority regarding Land Claims – Viewpoint from the North (bc-north.com)


The Absence of a Fruitful Marriage is the Collapse of the State

Essay by Christine Reeves (Communications Class)

The state governing system is dependent on the state of lawful Marriages. We see this playing out all over the world. We witness the breakdown in government and economic systems where abuse of overreach, greed and power of the elected has stripped the middle class into slave labour, reduced the poor and the ill to medical assistance in dying and has achieved murdering babies by the masses. All this is the result of the lack of fruitful love in Marriages. We have demoted ourselves into self-gratifying mirrors of illusory worlds, and identity is lost due to the lack of true marriage.

First, I will examine how the state has become corrupt by its root and how the breakdown in marriages has robbed the human person of love, fidelity, and charity. Let us look at what Marx says to understand how our governing system has collapsed,

“In the social production of their life, men enter into definite relations that are indispensable and independent of their will, relations of production which correspond to a definite stage of development of their material productive forces. The sum total of these relations of production constitutes the economic structure of society, the real foundation, on which rises a legal and political superstructure rises and to which corresponds to definite forms of social consciousness.”

(Marx 1859) Easthope, Antony, McGowan, Kate. “A Critical and Cultural Theory Reader”. McGraw-Hill International (UK) Limited, 73 & 85 2009/2012.

In other words, how a person was raised determines their actions, how they cultivate friendships, how they treat others, and how successful they are in dealing with staff, which determines their class and state. Their relationship with family, their economic standards and the ethics they live by directly affect how a system functions as a whole system.

Marriage as an institution has become more about the guests than the promises, and most couples do not fully understand their identity in Christ when professing vows to each other.

Ephesians: 5:28, So [also] husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.

Ephesians, CHAPTER 5 | USCCB

“St. Paul says that the husband should love his wife  “as himself “. What does this mean? The next sentence says that what follows from this is that the man’s love of himself is the reason for his love of his wife. This means that the union is more than sexual and more than psychological, it is ontological. The man and his wife are one flesh, one natural person. When you love your wife you are loving yourself, just as when you love your body (or your soul) you are loving yourself because you do not have your body (or your soul), as you have your possessions; you are your body (as well as your soul), and when you love your wife you are loving yourself because you do not have your wife, as you have your possessions, you are your wife (as well as yourself). The two really become one. It’s literal.”

(Kreeft, P 169) Kreeft, Peter, “Practical Theology 350+ Ways Your Mind Can Help You Become a Saint, Spiritual Direction from Saint Thomas Aquinas”. Ignatius Press, San Francisco, 169 2014.

This love is charitable towards each other as long as Christ is at the centre, expounds your passion, and the Marriage becomes fruitful, a child is born to the couple, and they are now a family. This is love, self-sacrificing, and self-giving. They want the other to be happy.

“So if you hate your spouse, you are hating yourself, just as when you hate your body (or your soul you are hating yourself.” (Kreeft, p 169)

(Kreeft, P 169) Kreeft, Peter, “Practical Theology 350+ Ways Your Mind Can Help You Become a Saint, Spiritual Direction from Saint Thomas Aquinas”. Ignatius Press, San Francisco, 169 2014.

When we speak of unhappy marriages, domestic violence, or divorced parents, just as unified weddings that are fruitful and have love and fidelity in Christ is beautiful. This has an effect on the state of our institutions, how our government runs the country, and how the world is blessed by such goodness. The opposite is true as well. The collapse of a state system is the symptom of a breakdown in Marriage and family.

We have adopted a belief system that Freud’s model of psychoanalysis had materialized; his findings spread when we were leaving the renaissance and entering into the first wave of feminism. Psychoanalysis had become the new thought system that would change the world,

“Sigmund Freud was one of the first to introduce the notion of the unstable subject, radically and uncertainly divided between the conscious and unconscious. For Freud, this division comes about as a result of the movement of the individual from being into meaning, whereby the raw material of human subjectivity (the infant) encounters the law of culture and the demand to take up a position within the symbolic structures of the culture (Easthope & Kate McGowan 73).”

(Easthope & Kate McGowan P 73) Easthope, Antony, McGowan, Kate. “A Critical and Cultural Theory Reader”. McGraw-Hill International (UK) Limited, 73 & 85 2009/2012.

First of all, the collapse of state systems is because of years and years of state systems of education teaching us concepts and theories from older men who have not had much success in their personal lives and not much success in their marital lives. They did not follow a set standard of faith, yet their models for psychoanalysis and capitalism have not aided our society in any way. We are not material; the material is something that science can use; we are spiritual, eternal, beautiful, and made in God’s image and likeness. Once we believe this to be true, state systems will begin to lift from the greed and obsessions for power and dominance to the fruits of the Holy Spirit in love are: 1-Charity, 2-Joy 3-Peace 4-Patience, 5-Kindness, 6-Generosity, 7-Faithfulness, 8-Gentleness, 9-Self-Control. https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Galatians%205:22-23&version=RSVCE

St. Francis de Sales writes,

“Above all else, I exhort married people to have that mutual love which the Holy Spirit in Scripture so highly recommends. O you who are married, it means nothing to say, “Love one another with a natural love”—two turtle doves make such love. Nor does it mean anything to say, “Love one another with a human love”—the pagans have duly practiced such love. With the great apostle I say to you, “husbands, love your wives as Christ also loved the Church,” and you wives, love your husbands as the Church loves her Savior. God brought Eve to Adam, our first father, and gave her to him in Marriage. It was God too, my friends, who with an unseen hand tied your holy marriage bond and gave you to one another. Why then do you not cherish each other with a completely holy, completely sacred, and completely divine love?.”

(Sales, 221) de Sales, Francis. “Introduction to the Devout Life”. Image Books A Division of Doubleday & Company, Inc. Garden City, New York, 221 1972.

There is much domestic violence, a lot of pride and selfishness. More people are concerned about pleasure-seeking the body without realizing how it affects the mind and spirit. Abortion is a solution the state government allows to provide a ‘fix’ to a problem. A baby is not a problem. The choices of pleasure and sexual gratification without Marriage are self-seeking, for satisfying the body, they become a killing machine to murder their own baby because they did not think things through ahead of time. This causes long-lasting effects on state systems and violence in our world.

The collapse and breakdown of the government, our culture, and the rise and fascination with the culture of death are the cause and effect that have constructed the tornado effect, and its destruction affects all aspects of creation.

Lacan writes,

“The sufferings of neurosis and psychosis are for us a schooling in the passions of the soul, just as the beam of the psychoanalytical scales, when we calculate the tilt of its threat to entire communities, provides us with an indication of the deadening of the passions in society.”

(Lacan P 85) Easthope, Antony, McGowan, Kate. “A Critical and Cultural Theory Reader”. McGraw-Hill International (UK) Limited, 73 & 85 2009/2012.

Marriage in Holy Matrimony is the union of fruitful love; when this union multiplies in the laws of human ecology, then our culture and our charity will override all aspects of murder, violence, pornography, addiction, slavery, suicide, and global environmental issues.

A beautiful excerpt from St. Francis de Sales,

“As to other things, then, mutual support must be so great that they will never be angry with each other at the same time and hence quarrels or disputes will never be seen between them. Honeybees cannot remain in a place where there are echoes, loud noises, and resounding voices, nor can the Holy Spirit remain in a home where there are quarrels, recriminations, and echoing sounds of scolding and strife”.

de Sales, Francis. “Introduction to the Devout Life”. Image Books A Division of Doubleday & Company, Inc. Garden City, New York, 221 1972.

We can build a better economy, sound culture, and a healthy world by keeping Christ at the centre of Marriage, and those who are married, what a gift to the world and all living creatures. Marriage is worth more than gold. I will end my essay with a poem I wrote about a Marriage that was torn apart by addiction:

Two by each travelling by

summer’s heat and winter’s freeze

spring blossomed, and fall got cold

long before we knew it so

Marijuana haze, eyes a glaze

simple loving became a craze

of one by one each alone

united by love

addiction transpired

nothing is what it seems

I longed for dreams of white

satin laces

warm nights in a loving embrace

walks and journeys, expeditions long overdue

I never knew of these

My soul reaches for the little boy

long bitter heart controlled

emotions rise and rejection soar

long before we knew for sure

love has split and broken

I meant my words on that simple

day, before God, I sat and prayed

a will and a hope of love to stay

that only winter’s freeze took away

promises and calming hugs

never an action to make it okay

I began to yearn for the day

the wounds of loss on that fateful night

would shed the pain and healing might

restore your faith again

I miss my dreams of all we had

all the loving shared that mattered

it seems to me I hold a candle and understand

what it means to stay lit in the face of disaster

Anniversary’s come every year

love passes some with cheer

ours has broken from lack of mirror

the actions hurt confusion and denial

power and less nothing can resolve

an empty nest

Love remains the same

love doesn’t change

selfish means rip apart

what golden rings meant from the start the beginning of a white wedding.

The Fall and Rise of a Stink Bug

Our sun rose at 7:41 AM this morning, and the wind blew a lot of the dead leaves over the lawn, I felt the surge of exhaustion, but it wasn’t because I didn’t sleep; it was because of the autumn glory, where the sun beams through the colours of gold and reds, and I wanted to crawl back into bed.

I called my mother. I love the sound of her voice. I look forward to praying the Christian Prayer with her. I realized I was almost out of gas on my way to my parent’s home. I landed at the gas station. Things were going well until I saw a stink bug on the screen as I was hitting the amount. It was sliding down and up but couldn’t grasp anything with its feet. I took a piece of paper to get it from the bottom of the screen where I thought the bug was. When I went to help it out, I realized it was not outside the screen; it was on the INSIDE, and I couldn’t grab it. I tried to find a way that the screen could open, but I couldn’t do it. Watching it struggle as it crawled up and slid down was hard. It was a horrifying sight. There was nothing I could do; it was stuck, and I couldn’t free it. I finished filling my tank with gas and went to talk to the shell gas attendant. I wanted it to be free. I was desperate when I spoke to the attendant, “There is a stink bug trapped in the screen of your gas pump, so can you open it so it can get out?” The attendant talked to the manager. A few minutes later, the manager spoke to me and told me opening up a gas pump is not easy; one needs to call in people to do that. “We get tons of stink bugs in there, and there is nothing we can do. It might be lucky enough to find its way out if it flew in.” She said.

I felt jarred by this hopeless situation. I know what some of you are thinking, it’s JUST a stink bug, a bug that is a nuisance. I know. Would I feel the same way with a fly? I don’t think so. Why is this bothering me so much? It could be that so many are sick with cancer or the many more profound things I can’t mention here about why this bothers me so much.

There are some things we have no control over. That our time is limited on this earth, and we keep trying to make it one day, one hour, a month, pushing and struggling, laughing and crying and looking at the sun. However, when life blows hard on our body and sickness comes, I am so happy and blessed that I have God to call on. When nothing else is working, and it seems there is no hope, God gives me this grace to reach out and touch the Son through my prayers, and God hears me!

There is always a way out of being stuck. It isn’t enough to let go of the struggle. It is enough to allow the battle to change the circumstances from I can’t do this, but God can. It is a miracle to have the grace to see God mix with man. I use the term man as humankind (male and female). I didn’t stop there. I prayed for the bug and thanked God for His precious creatures, hoping this one would be set free.

Now I ask myself this question, what do the gas attendants do with that many stink bugs getting inside the strangest places of the gas tanks?

Something I am going to think about on my drive to school.

After Visiting the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory

I could go into detail about the grand tour I went on with our Astronomy class that the faculty of Astronomy from UBCO arranged; however, that in itself is self-explanatory given the idea that I love the universe of star births and deaths and everything in the Milky Way and beyond! The tour impressed me so much that I will return for the next one when they open the data centre!!!

On the way back, we stopped for a coffee at A&W. That is where we met Sean. He is a drummer, and he loves music. He was sitting beside us, and I guess we were loud enough that he was listening to our conversation by chance. He has blonde hair. He is 54 years old (he told us his age), a boyish face. He had books spread out over his table. I could see Sean glancing over at us as we were talking amongst each other, “I think it is so cool that our Scientists observe and keep track of these mysterious radio bursts, some at 140 bursts detected, I mean EVERY day another mysterious burst, today alone had 4 bursts.” I exclaimed.
https://perimeterinstitute.ca/news/chime-telescope-detects-more-500-mysterious-fast-radio-bursts-its-first-year-operation and…

Sean, by this time, shuffled his chair over a nudge, took a sip of his coffee, listening to us.
I continued, “I am amazed that the footprints left on the Moon stay there forever, marking the Moon almost like a scar!” Sean looked like he couldn’t hold off any longer; he jumped into our conversation, introducing himself, then asked, “Do you want to know what my favourite flower is?” We shook our heads, dismayed at not knowing what he was talking about. He continued turning his chair to face us from where he was sitting, “My favourite flower is the dandelion because it is bright like the Sun, and after it dries out, they look like the Moon! And when the petals begin to fall off, they are disbursed like the stars all over the sky.” I had to look up what Sean was saying to us, here is the article that talks about the dandelion and the meaning behind it: https://www.naturetalksandwalks.co.uk/where-does-the-dandelion-get-its-name-from/ .

We were surprised by what he shared with us. He listened to us about the observatory we were at and asked us lots of questions. Sean shared how he suffered from brain damage and had a challenging time, and he also shared that he loves nature and the stars. Sean touched our hearts. He said, “you know how to show God’s love? By caring, saying thank you and being grateful. He also shared, “laughter reduces stress hormones.”

So, readers, to get a laugh here is a kid joke:
“The puzzled astronomy student spent all night wondering where the Sun went… 
…but then it dawned on him.

I will always look at a dandelion differently…with more respect… and with thanksgiving for Sean.

Conversations Waiting for the Washroom

Sometimes, waiting is necessary for hope to make its way into our lives. Hope that there is still prayers to be said, hope that people can connect with each other and share a moment that impacts our lives forever.

I am surprised by the conversations I had with strangers waiting for the washroom. I was at Home Restaurant in Hope on the way to a retreat. While I was waiting in line for the washroom a woman with curly dark hair in her mid 60’s and I were standing there. I looked on the far wall in front of us and there was this old photograph of women in dresses and men with top hats standing on the street. “This photograph is amazing, I love how they dressed back then.” I said. She smiled.

There was a pause.

“I remember back in the day, when dressing up was the thing we did. When I was younger, we would wear dresses and it was a celebration to dress up. Nowadays, people walk around like some of them look like they are wearing pajamas. My grandchild’s teacher came to school one day, she is a very good teacher by the way. But she looked like she was wearing pajamas.”

I smiled, “I do miss the days when I would get excited to wear a fancy dress, shiny shoes and get excited just to go out to the store! Times have changed! I see some people wearing torn jeans, some with these oversized baggy pants and some forgot the sides of their pants lol, I have seen some of the friends my son was hanging out with wear pants so baggy as if their pants are falling down but not! And sometimes I see some men today look like they are wearing suits that are too small for their bodies and pants too short for their legs.”

The lady giggled. I brought up the Waltons and how the women and girls dressed back in history, “they were not a very rich family but most of the dresses were handmaid. It was like that in my grandmother’s day. Handmade clothes. Material was cheaper to buy than to purchase a dress due to the cost and labor.”

We both reminisced over the simpler days. I wondered if it was simpler or if it was complicated. To us it seems complicated in the digital age, however, everything had to be done by hand and not computers. They labored long and worked hard. Today we are working hard but a different way of working. Our discussion ended when the washroom was free.

The next woman that came to stand in line, she was in her 80’s. I was waiting in line for 20 minutes by this time, and the woman I was talking to who was in her 60’s peeked through the closed door and whispered, “there is a woman who has some challenges in the washroom and has a caregiver she has help to get to her walker. But it might take a bit more time”. I nodded still thinking about the people in the photograph on the wall. The woman in her 80’s looked like she really had to go, and she was way older than me so I chided for her to come and go ahead of me. I am not trying to make myself into some kind of washroom ‘waiting-in-line’ hero or anything lol but, if you saw her face you would let her go in front of you as well I am sure.

Then the conversation happened with the 80 year old. “that is a very unique necklace you have, what does it mean?”

I was surprised not many people ask me about my special cross necklace. I casually said, “It means I embrace the cross. I am a Secular Franciscan and I wear this as my cloak to proclaim Christ and the good news in the secular world.”

She stared at it, then came closer.

“What is a Secular Franciscan?” She asked. I smiled at her, “I follow in the footsteps of St. Francis of Assisi, by trying to live the gospel to life and life to gospel accept I do not live in a community, I live and work and can marry and have children but I serve and work all the while proclaiming the good news about Jesus and living my life in service and prayer while I work and live in the secular world.” the washroom door flew open and the woman with her walker came out. The 80 year old walked towards the open door looked sad and said, “I really want to talk to you some more, but”…she went into the washroom.

I was alone still waiting patiently….

The 80 year old woman came out, and of course I was still there, she looked like she was crying, and she embraced me with the BIGGEST, greatest hug I had experienced in a whole MONTH! I held her tight, and I could sense the Lord come over me. I looked at her, and I said can I pray for you? she looked overjoyed, and said, ‘yes please I have many ailments and I am sick.’ She gave me her name, and I have been praying for her ever since.

There is always an opportunity wherever we are to simply be ourselves. To announce good news, to converse with each other, to be authentic, and to simply not be afraid to share the cloak I wear in a medallion on my neck that shows the cross and two hands on each side: Embrace the Cross, and proclaim the goodness of God.

I know that while following a humble and difficult path, that God somehow takes what is little and uses the moment to allow the grace of God to flow into conversations. After I used the washroom, (which was very fast), I looked for the woman who hugged me —she was nowhere in sight.

Career Pathways to Success – Open Door Group

When a significant life transition happens, many emotions can move a person into a state of questioning, “What do I do now?” It happens to all of us when faced with a job loss, transitioning from staying at home to returning to work after a significant illness. Disabilities can have a considerable impact on one’s employment.

I faced a change myself, and I researched programs to help me overcome the barriers I met that Covid 19 had impacted my life to such a degree that I had to find a new career. The transitioning was more than difficult because I was with my employment for 10 years, which led to depression and anxiety about what I would do next. The door shut on my face, and I couldn’t see any doors opening for me; however, I didn’t give up easily searching for new ways to gain employment while continuing my studies at Okanagan College.

That is when I found the Open Door Group. When I applied and talked with them, things went smoothly. The program opened up doors that I didn’t realize there were doors. I learned to adjust my job scope today and see my relevant skills and experience that guided me in updating my resume and seeing the job market opportunities in our computerized age.

The Career Path Program helped me upgrade my First Aid and other Certifications I needed, and the program’s content was thorough, exciting, and fun.

If you find you are hit with challenges or significant changes and need help to guide you through the barriers and gain new skills, I strongly urge you to contact Career Paths. They have offices in Kelowna, Vancouver, and Kamloops. Here is more information:


What do you want to do for work? Need training? We can help you get there!

The Career Pathways to Success program is a 6 week employment program that supports people with disabilities and mental health issues to gain confidence, tools and resources to pursue their career dreams. Participants will be provided with opportunities to identify viable employment goals through career exploration and the ability to access certificate and skills training necessary to be competitive and successful in today’s labour market.

Career Pathways to Success uses a hybrid (blended) method of instruction.  This includes:

*        Online Learning: Group learning delivered through Zoom Video Conferencing so that
participants participate from home.

*        In-Person Learning: There are several training certificates that require in-person attendance,
such as First Aid.

All participants receive the following in order to ensure their success in the CPS program:

*        Laptop, earbuds and tech support

  *   Workbooks for all workshops provided
  *   Weekly food supports ($50 gift card emailed weekly to participants)
  *   A completion bonus ($600 stipend upon completion)
  *   Additional paid training, as determined by the participant’s training plan (First Aid, WHMIS,
SuperHost, Serving it Right etc.)
  *   Other financial supports and resource navigation as required


*        Participants identify as having a disability
*        Participants are unemployed or precariously employed
*       Participants are able to work in Canada legally

Promotional information is attached. Please visit our website below and fill out the application form if you are interested. You will be invited to the next Career Pathways to Success information session to start the process.

For this particular Program you can contact:
Denise Scott | Program Coordinator
Career Pathways to Success: https://www.opendoorgroup.org/programs/careerpathways/

Environment and our local City Garbage-The Disposal of the ‘Rapid Test Kits’ & Masks

Rubbish Garbage Environment Pollution Waste

I want to understand how much of an impact the rapid test kit chemicals may have on the environment and the general public because we are told to throw them out in the garbage. I will contact the CDC environment team, the Public Health Minister, and my local MLA about how we are currently disposing of these rapid test kit materials.

I was walking out and about to get my vitamin D from the sun, and there on every corner and on every street there was health masks on the ground. How many masks are filling the garbage dumps? What impact do they have over time as they accumulate? I wonder…

For more information go to: our Government Canada site:

This also may be of interest:

I don’t see any information about how to dispose of this stuff properly. I was told by the public health nurse to throw mine in the garbage. I spoke to poison control, and they shared that it is best to contact the above people. If you were exposed, it’s best to contact your local public health where you got your kit and ask if it is the one that is recalled or if they are all recalled. I know Okanagan College has been giving out rapid tests to the students. If you are a student or know one, maybe ask how these chemicals are disposed of there? Something to consider for our beloved earth and its creatures.

I honestly think that our Health Minister and the City need to have further discussions with the CDC environment teams to ensure that when we are told to wear masks, and do our own Covid 19 testing with kits to take home that there needs to be a plan to protect the public and the environment and wildlife from what may be toxic over time. It starts with us to care.

Caged Birds and the Hope of Flight

I was born in a time of protests and revolutions, where rallies rose as the vices of students and groups had their say to make changes to long-standing systems. We were moving away from the first wave of feminism into the second wave.

Doodle art by Christine Reeves

Two years ago, life changed for all nations of the world. The change was not Covid 19 that crept into the lives of every one of us. It was the change in our ability to understand who we are amidst a global idea of a pandemic. The change shifted from what we know to the hysteria of misinformation. Powers from our government and Public Health have blown into a social media data news frenzy. We became the enslavement of mass amounts of people who have become desensitized to balancing information from two sides of a coin. The only way I can express it. One side has an image. Flip the coin and another image. Both images are different but are one coin. Our Country is like a coin. Let us complicate it further, we have the coin, the Canadians, and then there is the manufacturing of the money, representing our government.

Those who serve the Canadians have flipped the image upside down, and because they work in the very crux of it all, they can see how easy it is to change the image ever so slightly.
Why are Canadians reacting to the fear our government is displaying? We are all here for a short time, yet some Canadians are questioning how the government spends our money and time.

There is a reason I stopped writing this blog. Perhaps it is because of the harshly censored writers. After all, many are witnesses to fake news happening to larger-than-life broadcasting companies. It could also be fear that as a writer something about the current state of Canada and the communities Canadians live in, a majority are suffering severe consequences for what they post on social media and other spaces on the web.

The bird had wounded its heart
I wanted to fix it
The bird couldn’t fly
I wanted to make it a new wing
I caged the bird, the bird died
I wanted to make it live forever
The bird flew away
I caught the bird and let it go
the bird lived

Think about that for a moment. Our Prime Minister of Canada states, ‘keep Canadians safe,’ safe from what and who? Our current government has bullied many, and many Canadians have displayed how unsafe they are while Liberals are in power.

I got sick with the flu.

The PCR test told me it was Covid 19 twice. Do I believe in the accuracy of a PCR test? No, I do not. Is Covid 19 a real issue? Yes, I believe it is, but I do not understand how public health can throw out figures and numbers of deaths and sicknesses due to covid because people get sick with the flu. I also think there are sides to our science and medical experts that need to come together and hash out misinformation, sit down and look at what is working and what is not with medical and science professionals who have a different view of our current situation about the pandemic we have been made aware of by our government and public health ministers all over the world.

I have gone to my community’s rally to support the Freedom Convoy. Yes, you are correct; I am one of those people who have attended and supported the peaceful rallies in my local community.

Photo by Christine Reeves

It is heartbreaking to see some families and communities pitted against each other. Difference of opinion means you are cancelled or, worse yet, judged to the highest degree.

Half of the community has been dismissed by their employer because they would not comply with the mandates of our Public Health orders. Some cannot serve in the community to help those in need because the government and public health officials tell us that we risk others if we do not comply with their ideas of information. We no longer hug our friends or neighbours. Half of the community is cancelling family visits because they have refused the jab. Then we have the other side of some families who have had severe physical reactions and have been pushed aside for severe physical ailments because the jab hurt them and caused disabling effects that no one in our Canadian Federal Government is paying attention to.

Our fingerprints are unique and different, and we are all not the same. Mass injections of one form of treatment and trial will affect each person differently.

Some families cannot see their children due to the mandates that public health and government officials have ordered; this has created a divide in our backyards.

We live in a great battle, and the circle of unity broke until The Canadian Truckers for Freedom came to our rescue.

It took Covid 19 to reveal the actual ugly head of power and oppression to breathe a new kind of air. The type of air is fear and control and the stopping of all touching, hugging, singing, working, and buying for what. Compassion and listening to both sides of the coin are necessary to have peace and forgiveness. We need to change our ways and look into the camera without the lens cover on.

If we are not careful and go with only one side of the information, we will not understand how to flip the coin to see the other side. I also realize that we have two holes in our nose for a good reason and a hole in the mouth that does not muffle it with chemical-laced material; the hole in our mouth also allows us the ability to speak. Many Canadians stopped talking and stopped sharing?

The mandates are harming so many. A friend of mine said the generation of children today will not read people’s expressions on their faces because of the mask covering half of the citizens’ faces. That alone may hinder growth and social awareness.

I am heartbroken over the current state of our government, which is name-calling and bullying many Canadians. One side of Canada is against the mandates, and the other is for the mandates. I am frustrated that the government cannot look at both sides and come together with the medical experts currently protesting with the Truckers’ convoy and rationally and peacefully look at the two-sided picture on the one coin.

I stopped writing because I lost faith in people and my government my idea of being Canadian shifted downward. No one is paying attention to the ‘dismissed’ Canadians who lost our voices and this is the workers in our country this is all of us. Our labor represents the rim; the edge is unity with no break in the whole circle representing all Canadians. I long for the community to hug, smile and build bridges with each other again and for everyone to stop asking if people had the jab or for government to stop creating division and oppression for people that do not want the jab or cannot have it.

The convoy of Truckers came in droves. I burst out crying with new hope. I began to see a shift in my community, people talking more, removing their masks and smiling again. I started to see people come together as I had never seen before. A unity that makes me smile as I write this. I pray for Canada and all of our beautiful nations of the world, and I hope that somehow we can forgive and respect both sides, even if it means to touch the leper who needs bread.

Victim of a Scam

I fell prey to a scam. However, if it wasn’t for my wise father, It could have been worse for me. There are a lot of feelings that come from being scammed. The feeling of being stripped as another trusted person gets into one’s space and then strips your belongings and leaves you standing there with a cup of empty coffee in your hand with no pot to refill it.

It all started one morning when I received a text message from the Chief Operating Officer from one of the companies I sent my resume too. He texted me saying that I have been chosen as one of the top applicants.

I have had many resumes that I sent out to a lot of companies that I had checked out thoroughly for gaining steadier employment. These jobs seemed reputable. But let me tell you, as reputable as they are, keep alert because scammers are lurking for their next victim and targeting people looking for work.

My text message, ‘dinged,’ from my cell phone at 8:00 AM. It was from the job I was hoping to get because it was a remote job I could do at home. I had all the credentials, reviewed the company, and looked up the individuals who texted me through LinkedIn and the ‘said’ company off their website. I should have picked up on the ‘possible warning alert’ when I had to go through the mobile app called telegraph to discuss the job by the human resources interviewee on my phone. However, I didn’t grind my coffee beans yet and was very excited over the opportunity. Everything looked legit.

I covered the tracks, reviewed the company. I confirmed their existence, and I was ready; once they told me they would like to offer me the job, it sounded fantastic, they sent the offer letter via email. I signed it and sent it back to them via email (bad idea). Soon after that, they sent me another email expressing that I needed to purchase a MacBook and a fax machine with a Norton program and other Software. Things were looking great. They spoke of the benefits, the fact that employees can purchase shares. The job seemed easy enough, data entry and client service, something I can do while building my dreams as I complete my diploma, even if it means reaching for the lightbulb at home instead of the stars.

I was thrilled that I got the job! What made me feel unsettled in my toes and tummy was that this human resource person had stated that they needed to deposit some money so I could purchase the office equipment. She also mentioned that she would send the cheque in a pdf format, and I would have to print it off and then use my mobile banking app to deposit the cheque. I did it. Why did I do it? I double-checked their names and the company, and I knew they had my resume for quite some time now. I rationalize it by my past work experience where when I worked for a Chemical Co., my manager gave me money to set up all the offices for our operators coming from overseas, so I didn’t think much of this. I didn’t heed my inner warnings.

Conceptual hand writing showing Scam Alert. Concept meaning warning someone about scheme or fraud notice any unusual

The next thing that jarred me was when she texted, “you must get the office products right away so that your training can get started. I texted back, “okay.” What does one do when one does not have a husband to talk things over with? I called my dad, “Dad, did you hear I got the job with this awesome company? They have great benefits, and I can work the night shifts and still complete my studies during the day! It is a lot more money than what my last position paid me. Also, they sent me a cheque already in my email, which I deposited in my bank, and I am waiting to purchase the office equipment!” He said, “I just heard on the news not long ago about a student who did what you did print off the company cheque, deposited it in her bank, purchased what they asked her to, and then the cheque bounced. She was out all this money.”

I felt like I hit a wall. “I have been scammed.” After about 10 minutes of thinking, I panicked.

They had my name, address, a signature from the offer letter I signed. They had my confirmation that I sent them via email with my bank information. Wow! all in one afternoon! I was one busy girl.

I called my bank after the fact and told them of my recent deposit and that I needed them to check if the cheque cleared on their end. They told me it would take five business days to determine if it bounces. They logged my account, sent me to the fraud department, and advised me to make another account and transfer everything to be safe, which took the remainder of the afternoon into the evening. I contacted the local police they opened up a file. I called the TD bank, which the scammers used for their pdf cheque. The TD clerk took all the information down off the cheque and thanked me.

There is a lesson here: when you do an interview, do it over zoom or a remote job, then ensure you facetime, or skype with them and never download a pdf cheque and deposit it into your mobile bank app on your phone.

Okay, so I fell flat on my face, and it was okay because the sun shone somewhere else in the world, just not on me that day. I am wiser, and I am extra cautious now. Once things got straightened out on my end, I decided that bad things happen to vulnerable people. There is a good tune that cheered me up. I cranked up the volume and danced around my living room to the song by Blue October, ‘Life’s like a Jump Rope.’

Check this CBC news article here: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/banks-online-scam-fake-cheque-fraud-td-1.6244111

The Red Cottage – Timeless Love

The Red Cottage, photo given to me from my Auntie Jean

by Christine Reeves

The moment we hit the dirt road, my windows rolled down, and we were able to touch the forage on the side of the road as we passed. I knew we were close to arriving at the red cottage. The tingles in my toes, my heart skipping a beat, my breath held and then released. If you recall watching a balloon filled with helium fly out from your hand, going straight up in the air, that was me ready to fly out of my seat in anticipation.

Upon arrival at the red cottage, my dad could not stop the car fast enough; before we could run out the door to look at the lake.

The red cottage is my favourite place where dreams come true, the family gathers, and love fills the air away from the school world, the drama of friends, traffic, and responsibility. Time is what we had there, a time of surprise where dreams unfold for everyone, where love comes together in one super present, ready to unwrap it takes your breath away. It wasn’t just the arrival; it was walking into the cottage that gave me a whole secure perspective. The familiar kitchen window overlooks the lake. The chair in front of the large window, my uncle, would look through his binoculars while we were in the lake swimming to make sure we didn’t pass the dock. If we did, he would wave and yell, “Come back, that’s too far!” Watching him jump up and down with his arms swaying like a tree moving to-and-fro in the wind made us giggle even more and sneak past the dock to see him do the ‘warning dance.’ We loved our Uncle Don.

Going to the bathroom was exciting because on the door was the ‘knock-knock plaque’ with a wooden hammer attached to it, to which we loved to take the hammer and knock incessantly for fun. However, it wasn’t so fun when it was my turn to use the bathroom, and my cousins would do the very same thing! The bedrooms were neatly dressed, the scent of my grandparent’s, and the orange marmalade jam smell in the kitchen I could almost taste it by memory. The colouring books stacked on the shelf and the large crayon box underneath them call me to pick them up and start colouring!

It was warm enough for a swim. My mother laid the luggage on the bed. She pulled out my favourite pink bathing suit with the buttons on the front. My sister grabbed hers already and ran down to the lake faster than fast. I was too dreamily taking in the ambiance and the curtains, the paisley flowers, the deck of cards we were going to play. The unloading of the goodies in the bag my dad brought in and set them on the counter. The fishing rods that looked so lonely lay against the wall in the corner by the door. The famous couch where all the adults sat watching our play and songs we made up for entertainment. I paused, looking into my cousin Stephen’s little bedroom window to hear the familiar birds. I missed listening to the song of the birds because, in the city, the noise drowns their music.  I loved his room. We were allowed to take turns sleeping in his room, which made it exceptionally exciting when it got to be my turn. I was the youngest.  In his room at night, you could hear the crickets; the rhythmic song always put me to sleep.

Then looking at the weapon that took down a blood-thirsty bat, the famous broom was standing in the corner of the hallway. I remember one evening a bat flew in the door. Everyone ran wildly all over the place. My aunt yelled, “cover your hair!”, my mother ran into the bathroom, my sister and cousins ran outside and me? I watched the fun unfold as I clung to my hair, peeking through my strands, praying the vampire bat wouldn’t suck our blood. My dad was the true hero in the story. He took the broom and our butterfly net, caught the bat, and let it go outside.

What is even more precious is when my grandmother puts the kettle on because once she starts the kettle, that means its Storytime. We sat by her feet while she shared her adventures when she was young. Then the family gathers around the table to play cards. I don’t remember the kinds of games we played. I remember my grandmother laughing so hard she accidently peed in her pants. I knew that love intertwines in memory of each of our hearts that grows inside me. Family love is shared, experienced, and transparently moves into the present and designs the future. Do you see? It isn’t just the Red Cottage I speak of; it’s the love that filled it and the love that continues to fill us.

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