Posts Tagged “Todd Stephens”

Todd Stephens working on paddle design commision

Todd Stephens working on paddle design commision

I did something today that I have been meaning to do for a while now, I visited Todd Stephens in his carving studio, Wilp Simgan (House of the Sacred Tree).  Todd is a very amiable person, who likes to brag that he has never been in a fight.  I dropped in on his studio this afternoon in order to catch up on things and work on my alder spoon for class.  Todd and I talked from any number of things from aliens to religion to business and we went our separate ways at closing time with more of an understanding of each other and our backgrounds.  Todd and I have very similar backgrounds, we both are from Prince Rupert, we both went to PRSS, we both know little about the family on our father’s side.

I know that my father is Ojibway from the Sagamok reserve near Massey, Ontario, I know that his mother’s name was/is Mary, I know that he was taken into custody by child services at infancy, I know that he had severe hypothermia at the time, I know that he was raised in the foster care program, but I know very little else.  Neglect seems to be a common theme among aboriginal people that I know, such as in my dad’s case.   And according to a 2003 Canadian Incidence Study put out by the Canadian government, neglect is the most common form of child abuse among first nations [1].  And although, I try to keep the subject matter of this blog art-related and on a positive note, I feel that I have to say something about this.  As a christian, I believe that God looks after those who have no fathers, the widows and the orphans.  And for exactly the reason that God values what man rejects, I went with a notion that God is among the first nations people, myself included, in a way that is unique and strong.  And I have seen him do great things on my behalf even in these past few months.  And as the book of Romans says, in the Bible, God works all things to the good for those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.

God has blessed me with a purpose, and I believe that God is the source of my aspirations and inspiration.

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