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Rise in Glory: Owanah Anderson, wise elder

Rise in Glory: Owanah Anderson, wise elder

Katie Sherrod reports that Owanah Anderson has died.

Owanah Anderson, Choctaw elder, wise warrior woman, beloved friend/mentor, fierce Episcopalian, died today.

Many of you knew Owanah from her time as Native Missioner at 815. She retired to Wichita Falls, where she eventually — at age 80-plus – joined in the struggle in the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth to keep a former bishop from leaving The Episcopal Church while claiming Episcopal Church property. Up until two weeks ago, she produced Joyful, the newsletter of The Episcopal Church in Wichita Falls — one of the best newsletters in The Episcopal Church.

Our world is poorer, heaven richer

Many are offering their thoughts on Facebook about the impact of Owanah had in their lives and on the church.

Bishop Steven Charleston writes:

My Choctaw culture is matrilineal, the ancient line of our foremothers stretching back through time unbroken, each a respected ancestor, a source of wisdom and a woman of honor. Today an elder of our people who I revered went to join this eternal sisterhood. She has been my partner in the spiritual journey for 40 years. In memory of her, let me lift up every female elder of every tribe and nation, recognizing the women who keep faith alive, who nurture what is best in us all, and who guard the vision of the sacred for all generations to come. Welcome home, Owanah.


Image from Owanah Anderson’s Facebook page.


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Philip B. Spivey

Yakoke, sister Owanah, and rest comfortably in the arms of Jesus.

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