Sep 1 – David Pendleton Oakerhater – Deacon & Missionary

Sep 1 - David Oakerhater

David Pendleton Oakerhater
Deacon + Missionary
1 September 1931

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From the Satucket Lectionary

Self-portrait, by David Pendleton OakerhaterDavid P. Oakerhater (born around 1850) was a warrior and leader of the Cheyenne Indians of Oklahoma, and led a corps of fighters against the United States government in a dispute over Indian land rights. In 1875 he and 27 other military leaders were taken prisoner by the U S Army and sent to a military post in Florida. There, thanks to the efforts of a concerned Army captain, they learned English, were encouraged to earn money by giving art and archery lessons to visitors, and encountered the Christian faith. David and three others were moved to become Christians and to go north to study for the ministry. David was baptized in Syracuse, New York, in 1878, and ordained to the diaconate in 1881. He returned to Oklahoma and there founded schools and missions, and continued to work among his people until his death on 31 August 1931. When he first returned to Oklahoma in 1881, he said:

You all know me. You remember when I led you out to war I went first, and what I told you was true. Now I have been away to the East and I have learned about another captain, the Lord Jesus Christ, and he is my leader. He goes first, and all He tells me is true. I come back to my people to tell you to go with me now in this new road, a war that makes all for peace.

by James Kiefer


Note
: the “military post in Florida” is Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine, now a National Monument. Should you go there, you can learn more about his imprisonment there.

 

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