On July 11–14 in Browning, Montana, the Blackfeet tribe hosted its 68th annual Indian Days. The four-day powwow, held annually during the second week of July, attracts 10,000 participants who stay in teepees and tents on campgrounds.
The event is held on the Blackfeet Reservation.
Native Americans from more than 50 tribes gather to dance, compete in sports, socialize, and connect in faith.
They have drumming sessions among many tribes.
There is a parade through the town of Browning.
On Sunday morning, hundreds gather for a Mass that incorporates Native traditions.
The lively and colorful service highlights the unique expression of being Native American Catholic.
Residents on the reservation face many hardships including substance abuse, unemployment and suicide. Father Ed Kohler, who serves them, is pastor of the only Catholic Church in town, Little Flower Parish. Catholic Extension has supported Native American ministries there since 1973.
Father Kohler helps organize the Mass at Indian Days. Here’s what he loves about it:
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Catholic Extension has been supporting the Diocese of Helena, which was established in 1884 and originally encompassed the whole state, since its first church building grant there in 1911. The diocese now covers more than 50,000 square miles, which is almost double the size of Ireland.
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