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Gifted teepee will be a benefit to the community

A blessing of the new teepee is planned for December 3
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A grassroots group of grandmothers is raising funds for Mishomis Clifford Waboose, an Anishinaabe elder and traditional firekeeper from Batchewana First Nation, to replace his teepee that's used for ceremonies in a number of Indigenous communities. Left to right: Grandmother Isabelle Meawasige, Waboose and Grandmother Marlene Day.

Mishomis (grandfather) Clifford Waboose of Batchewana First Nation has been gifted a new teepee and a blessing is planned for Dec. 3.

In July, SooToday's James Hopkin reported on a fundraising effort for a ceremonial teepee to replace the teepee in place and used to facilitate  traditional ceremonies in Anishinaabe communities along the north shore of Lake Huron.

The teepee has helped Waboose, an Anishinaabe elder and firekeeper from Batchewana First Nation, to keep himself and others warm and dry when he’s called upon to work as a traditional firekeeper for his people.

Jaqueline St. Pierre, who helped facilitate the initial findraiser, called Waboose "everbody's go-to guy when they need a ceremonial fire."

“He’s super-reliable, and unless he’s booked to do a fire somewhere else, you can call him up if you have a mourning ceremony for somebody that’s passed or if you need healing for the people, or if you’re having a celebration," St. Pierre also said.

“We often rely on Clifford Waboose.”

The Dec. 3 blessing will feature remarks from Hereditary Chief Dean Sayers of Batchewana FN, an opening drum song by Grandmother Marlene Day of Serpent River FN, KII GA DO WAAK NOOKIMISUK, Lead Grandmother, ‘Lighting of the Sacred Fire’ by community grandfather and fire keeper, Clifford Waboose of Batchewana FN, a feast, as well as singing and drumming and prayers.

-with files from James Hopkin