Skip to content

ELCA Blogs

National Day of Remembrance for Indian Boarding Schools

The following message is shared on behalf of Vance Blackfox (Cherokee), Interim Senior Director, Ministries of Diverse Cultures and Communities.

Indian Boarding Schools: ELCA Truth-Seeking and Truth-Telling Initiative

During September, we remember the survivors and descendants of U.S. Indian Boarding Schools. On Saturday, Sept. 30, we observe the National Day of Remembrance for Indian Boarding Schools. You can participate by wearing an orange shirt and posting a photo of yourself or members of your congregation or community on social media. Use the hashtags #ELCA #TruthAndHealing and #DayOfRememberance. If you would like to support the National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition (NABS), you can purchase an orange shirt with their logo. However, any orange shirt will work.

Throughout September the ELCA’s Truth and Healing Movement has provided opportunities to learn about Indian boarding schools, including conversations with boarding school survivors and descendants of survivors, advocacy opportunities and more. 

The ELCA is committed to understanding our role in the tragic and sinful history of Indian boarding schools so that we can begin to heal together. Further, our learning and advocacy related to Indian boarding schools will not end September 30. Our journey toward healing will continue through the Truth and Healing Movement and beyond. To learn more and get involved, visit

Next week there are two free online classes: “Introduction to the Truth and Healing Movement” on Tuesday, September 26, and “Indian 101” on Thursday, September 28. This will be your last chance to attend these classes during the Truth and Healing Movement. For more information and to join the classes, visit


For more information on the ELCA’s Indigenous Ministries and Tribal Relations, visit: Indigenous Ministries and Tribal Relations – Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (