OKMULGEE, Oklahoma – Miss Muscogee (Creek) Nation Tema Yargee and Jr. Miss MCN Chenoa Barnett read Christmas Moccasins by Ray Buckley to children at the Muscogee (Creek) Nation Okmulgee Childcare Dec. 29. Christmas Moccasins is a true story about love and forgiveness.
In this story, Buckley shares a time when three young men treated him and his grandmother horribly. However, instead of treating the young men like they treated her, Buckley’s grandmother showed them love and forgiveness. She did so by gifting each of them a pair of beaded moccasins.
“The story we read today was very important about forgiveness because that’s something many Native people have to do these days,” Barnett said. “You just have to forgive and move on.”
Books can be happy, sad, full of excitement and adventure, and they can also hold life lessons. Children can enjoy an interesting story and learn about life at the same time. Children can learn about who they are through books written by Mvskoke authors or about Mvskoke culture.
“It’s important to read to the kids to promote Mvskoke culture and our language,” Yargee said. “It’s really important that we’re speaking our language because the kids are our future.”
“One day, they’ll be the ones that will have to take over and help with the language to keep it alive.”
The childcare staff tries to have a book reading every year, but they are going even further this year. Their goal this year is to have a guest reader monthly.
Dana Maxwell, Muscogee (Creek) Nation Okmulgee Childcare Supervisor, said, “We’re going to try to have Lighthorse and different people come and read a book to the kids and tell them what they do.”
This is an excellent opportunity for children to listen to great stories and learn about different departments and agencies throughout our Muscogee Nation. These children are the future of our Nation’s future Chiefs and Second Chiefs, Council Members, doctors, and nurses, or any other essential positions that keep our Nation running.
For information about the MCN Okmulgee Childcare or to volunteer to read the kids a story, contact Dana Maxwell at 918-732-7679.