Cherokee Messenger
October 1995

A Review of CCS Candidates

The following four CCS members are on the slate of officers for election at the October meeting, There will be discussion and opportunities for questions prior to balloting. Be sure to cast your vote on your CCS leaders in this annual election. Voting members are those with dues currently paid.

Pat George is a registered member of the Cherokee Nation and the Texas Cherokees. A native Texan, he came to Houston in 1982 as part of a disaster relief effort and now works as a Contract Specialist for the Texas Youth Commission. He is also a multi-instrumental musician, a humorist, and a seeker of truth. He has been active in the CCS since 1994.

Jimmy Melton, a CCS member since its inception, has been active in volunteer activities such as the Going Snake Project. He is a member of the Cherokee Nation, and his grandmother was an original enrollee. He is a superintendent with T & C Construction Company, is married to Susana Melton and is the father of Sani and Sarah.

Sammye Rusco has been serving CCS as the Vice President of Programs and has been active since CCS was organized. She is Director of Public Affairs for the Houston Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse.

Terry Thompson has been active in CCS during the past year, having overseen the Going Snake Project, the December, 1994 visit of youth from Tahlequah to Houston. He is Director of Personnel for S & B Engineers and Constructors.

CCS In the Community

ĎTis the season to be recognized through the Great Quilt Project! You can be etched into fame on a mighty quilt being organized by CCS members B.J. Callihan and Donna Allen. Each square will contain the name of an individual or a family for posterity, with the purchase of each square. Funds will help support the Cherokee Cultural Society. For further information call B. J. Callihan, 668-0222.

The Museum of Fine Arts Film Festival November 3-5, 1995, has one of our CCS committees hard at work. CCS will have a Cherokee Registration program on Sunday, November 5, as well as other exciting "Family Day" activities, 12:00 noon to 6:00 p.m. Volunteers are needed to assist with a variety of tasks, since there will be a tipi and crafts for children.

Thursday, November 2, there will be a CCS reception for Randy Redroad. Some extra assistance is needed with this event also.

It's a great time to meet new and interesting people, share our heritage and recruit new CCS members.

Call Committee Chair Judith Bruni if you can help: (713) 556-1908.

Excerpts From 500th Anniversary of Columbus: Columbus' Gift - The Err of Judgment

by J.C. High Eagle, Osage/Cherokee

"Oh, Great Spirit, grant that I may not criticize my neighbor until I have walked a mile in his moccasins." - Old Indian Prayer

These are my moccasin. They are not new or store bought. They are ones fashioned by my own experiences over many trails. From their appearance, you can see that they are worn and have withstood many obstacles in the paths along the way.

The "white man" wears shoes with soles that protect him from life's sticks, stones, and jagged edges. His shoes are made to kick, trample and destroy. Mine also have soles for protection, but are soft, allowing the wearer to feel his way along the path. The jagged edges along the trail can penetrate the sole upon an unwise step to remind the wearer to be more careful. For this, wisdom is imparted to the wearer not to step that way again lest a thorn remind him he is off the path.

Sometimes, the "thorns" of others have pricked my sole. In lieu of the usual emotional outcry of "Ouch, you hurt me!", typical of those in your world, I would but take up the trail again, this time wiser from the experience and would leave these footprints:

I have no "game to play", for only non-Indians seek these pastimes. They derive pleasure from deceiving each other. Indian people do not wish to fall victim to these foolish antics. Why should we want to abandon our ways for those of the "civilized"? I prefer our ways. They have withstood the test of time...

Our race has always known the existence of "God", the Great Spirit. My Creator never abandons His children, so fear does not abide In my camp, my tipi. He talks to us without us having to ask or beg His ear. He gives when we are ready and when it is time. We only pray to say, "Thank you for the many blessings You have given."

The Indian is a part of the rhythm of the universe. The Great Mysteries speak to him through the winds, the trees, the bird's song. "God", the Spirit One, gathers unformed thoughts into their proper channels, and unfolds these thoughts, ever as He opens the petals of a holy purpose in order that the purpose may appear.

I respect the "white man's" knowledge, his science, his education, and his ability to think differently and make things easier for himself. But we know that the "white man" does not understand our ways, nor does he respect them. Though be delights in his attempt, he does not maintain ultimate control over time - over destiny. When the white brother goes to his grave, who will be left to weep over him?

My people, they are like a great river. It has been flowing before any of us can remember. We take our strength and our wisdom and our ways from the flow and direction that has been established for us by ancestors we never knew, ancestors of a thousand years ago. Their wisdom flows through us to our children and our grandchildren to generations we will never know.

It is the "white man" who needs to learn or re-learn the lessons or life. He does not know what he's doing at times...

Columbus and your generations that follow, do not think me so naive to your people, to your ways. Moreover, please don't be innocent to mine. One comes here to this Mother Earth not to judge, but merely to understand, to learn and assess. Where something is misinterpreted or not clearly understood, an improved understanding should be in order, not criticism nor judgment.

Because one's motives or actions are not understood, is not justifiable reason for judgment based upon the limited perimeter of another's values.

Here, I lend you my moccasins.
Iím going for a mile walk.
Would you like to accompany me?

Herb of the Month: Golden Seal

Also called "Yellow Root," The Native Americans used Golden Seal both internally and externally. They derived a dye from the root as well. The thick-knotted yellow root is much more potent than the herb.

Mix Golden Seal powder and distilled water into a paste to place on cuts. It is a natural antibiotic.

University Of Houston Eye Exams

Note from The President

From personal experience, l recommend you all take advantage of the University of Houston School of Optometry service. The CCS has a special payment program with them and they certainly offer an exceptional service. It doesnít take long to schedule an appointment, and the receptionist can give you details on costs. Be sure to tell them you are a member of the Cherokee Cultural Society.
Call (713) 743-2020.

Copyright © The Cherokee Cultural Society of Houston