The Mi'kmaq Cross - Bay d'Nord


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  • Located at Bay du Nord or North Bay, 30 km due west of Miawpukek First Nation. Approximately a four-hour boat ride from the Reserve. It is believed to have curative and healing powers.
  • The Mi'kmaq Cross - Bay d'Nord

    1. 1. The Baie du Nord Cross <ul><li>The Mi’kmaq Cross is located at the Baie du Nord (a.k.a. North Bay) on Newfoundland and Labradors SW Coast, roughly 30 kms due west of Miawpukek. </li></ul><ul><li>Main Stakeholder is Miawpukek First Nation (supported by MFN Chief and Council, Grand Council and FNI). </li></ul><ul><li>It is a site of Spiritual significance to the Mi’kmaq people. </li></ul>Bay du Nord Cross Miawpukek Miawpukek
    2. 2. The Baie du Nord Cross <ul><li>The genesis of the Cross is not known with certainty </li></ul><ul><li>Known to be used as a Spiritual site as early as 1700 </li></ul><ul><li>Early 19 th century used by Mi’kmaq of Miawpukek </li></ul><ul><li>Believed to be pre-contact or early contact Mi’kmaq </li></ul>
    3. 3. The Baie du Nord Cross <ul><li>The Cross is located in a very isolated area not proximal to any community or highway </li></ul><ul><li>The distance via sea is approximately 60 km ( 4hour boat ride from Miawpukek) </li></ul><ul><li>The Cross is 150 meters above sea level on a plateau overlooking the bay. </li></ul>
    4. 4. The Baie du Nord Cross <ul><li>The Cross is Approximately 14.3 m X 4.4m in size and is laid out in stones on exposed granite bedrock. </li></ul><ul><li>Two small upright pillars on either side are to the north. </li></ul><ul><li>To the south a small depression is a repository for coins and other objects left by visitors as offerings. </li></ul>NORTH Site for offerings
    5. 5. The Baie du Nord Cross <ul><li>Known to be used as a Spiritual site as early as 1700. </li></ul><ul><li>The brook that flows near by should also be considered as a component of the site and is said to have curative powers as “ Holy Water”. Walking Sticks, as a testimony to those cured at the site, are alleged to be at at the site. </li></ul><ul><li>The Cross is regarded as a sacred spiritual site, predominately by the Miawpukek Mi’kmaq and secondary by other Mi’kmaq outside of Miawpukek </li></ul>
    6. 6. The Baie du Nord Cross <ul><li>The Connection between the Cross and the Mi’kmaq of Miawpukek goes way back in the history books </li></ul><ul><li>To get an understanding of the relationship with the elders living in Miawpukek today, a survey was given to 27 elders to capture community values of the site and associated oral history </li></ul><ul><li>The results were that the site has spiritual significance, it is a place for prayers, it has curative powers, and the holy water cures ailments. </li></ul><ul><li>Some of the elders have been there in person, others have not but their parents did </li></ul><ul><li>Today’s generation do not visit the Cross as they did in the past but it is important to note the respect for its presence and spiritual importance remains widespread, even among the youth. </li></ul>
    7. 7. The Baie du Nord Cross <ul><li>The Cross was first documented early in the 20 th century by two Roman Catholic Priests; Archbishop Michael F. Howley and Father Thomas F. Power </li></ul><ul><li>Dr. Howley first published reference to the Cross in 1908. He wrote, “There is a deep wooded gorge, at the bottom a brook. The bed of the brook is loose rocks and boulders. There is no path on either side and the accent up is both difficult and dangerous. After 400 –500 feet above sea level the mountain spreads out for miles. One of the bare patches visible is a rude of a cross of large size, stones 10 – 20 lbs each, as if fashioned like a giant rosary. No one alive can tell when it was made or how, for there are no stones anywhere within miles, of a similar kind from which it was made, and no means by which they could have been brought to the site. The Cross is held in great veneration by the Mic-Mac Indians.” </li></ul><ul><li>In 1983 Gerald Penny Wrote; “ Melvin Jeddore of Conne River, a recent visitor to the Cross, notes that if you pick up one of the rocks lying there you will find a hollow or a depression under it where it has been worn down – because of the wind I guess. Now, it must have taken a long time to do that.” </li></ul>
    8. 8. The Baie du Nord Cross <ul><li>Mi'kmaq who discovered the cross did not construct the cross, it was believed to done by the Ancients or Sa’qewe’ji’jk </li></ul><ul><li>Traditional pilgrimage </li></ul><ul><li>Preservation – no known issues. </li></ul><ul><li>The difficulty of access and wilderness are integral components of the Spiritual significance of the Cross. </li></ul>