NAIM is a non-profit community of missionaries servingalongside Native Christians in various Indigenous communities—both rural and urban—in Western Canada and in Montana, New Mexico and Washington in the US.
Those who work with NAIM—whether traditional missionaries or CMAs—form what they do around their own God-given gifts and skills, without competing against other offerings from the surrounding community. Some lead summer canoe trips and winter fishing camps. Others learn and teach the original language of the local tribe. Many are involved in youth ministry, among teens or pre-teens. A few focus on pastoral care among NAIM members, while others highlight leadership development.
The idea behind the First Nations Partnership team—which seeks to recruit, encourage, and help First Nations believers to enter the missions force and reach their own people for Christ—is really part of the vision of every NAIM worker. All are involved in the community—whether through attending family gatherings, performing funerals and participating in wakes, praying with families or simply building relationships.
CMAs (Community Member Anchors) are professionals who desire to live intentionally in First Nations communities, earn a living through a "regular" job—with access to supervision, training and resources from NAIM—and establish relationships with their coworkers and neighbors to share about God. CMAs garner financial support only for ministry-related expenses.
As a story-teller, I trust the LORD to grow my freelance writing and editing business to earn my livelihood, perhaps taking on some part-time work. With my own ministry still taking shape—including building prayer and financial support, to focus on elders and the elderly—I look forward to learning more about the Flathead Valley!
This year may involve organizing a group to take beading classes, like those offered through the Beading and Traditional Arts Circle every Friday at The People's Center in Pablo. Hosting friends to watch acclaimed Indigenous films—such as The Cherokee Word for Water (about Wilma Mankiller), The Lesser Blessed or Whale Rider—is another possibility. As is volunteering at a powwow: the Arlee Celebration is July 3rd-8th; North American Indian Days is July 12th-15th in Browning; or,Standing Arrow Powwow in Elmo is July 19th-22nd.
NAIM staff and the ministries they represent are solely funded through
and fully accountable to North America Indigenous Ministries.