These are two letters from Tina Chinook-Wagner who is a Native American Minister, Earth Stewart, Spirit Healer, Pipe Carrier, Leader & Teacher, who lives in Redmond, Washington. She & her husband, Marty, have a group there called the "Turtle Island Medicine Society" which is a member of the International Assembly of Spirit Healer Earth Steward Congregations. Their Church has a Wonderful Newsletter, which comes out monthly & is free to those behind the Iron Bars. They do a lot of Ministry in the Prisons.
Letter #1-Written February 12th, 1996
Dearest Mary Thunder,
I just sealed an envelope with postage & a request for more info, about the arts & crafts & tapes as described in the back of your wonderful book, "Thunder's Grace". I read your book in December & loved it so much I had to have my dearest friend read it, so I loaned it her & just got it back yesterday when our medicine societies members came together for a taking circle.
Mary, I want you to know that I have been feeling scared the past week. After anger comes fear, & I had been pretty angry with a lot of the craziness & destruction going on. I usually hold myself together pretty well, & try to keep things simple. So many are out there instigating the fear & I really hate it when it grabs a hold of me & I respond in a hopeless manner. Like I said, I really don't fall into that rut, but the past week I did. So, I had just sealed that envelope, then I sat down & looked through your book & much to my surprise I had underlined some things I had forgotten about. And in what I had underlined, my fear was lifted & my strength & joy restored.
I had to write & say thank you.
I had underlined page XIX author's preface, 3rd paragraph down, & 4th paragraph. Also page 14 & 15 3rd paragraph starting with Dear Readers, My husband is N.W. Coasta Salish & he loved your book also. I wish that I could hug you & say Thank You in person. Hopefully, one day I will.
Tina Chinook Wagner
***And One Day Tina Did...
After that letter I strived to get to her as many writings or stories as possible for their Newsletter that goes to all especially those in Prison. We became good friends thru the mail & letters.
In September of 1999...Tina came to a talk I was doing at the Unity Church in Seattle Washington & I finally got to see the woman's face/heart who I had so admired in her writings & we got to hug face to face.
***Now the Next letter written almost exactly 4 years later....
Letter #50 March 1st, 2000
***Now a Part of a Recent Letter from Tina...
Thunder I gave a very special assignment to a woman, age 50, who came asking me for teaching & healing. She was orphaned at age 2, Alaskan Salish, & then satanically abused & molested by adopted parents from then to age 19. She ran away & became a heroin addict. Somehow she got clean, has raised 2 daughters. But the anger & emotions from her past are killing her. She has breast Cysts (staff infection that 6 antibiotics haven't cured) & other female health problems. I told her if she really wants help she needed to "show me". I told her to read "Thunder's Grace". She is doing it. I saw her last Sunday when she was 1/2 way through your book...She had so many pages marked...highlighted...bookmarked. She said she kept seeing herself in your story. She feels the book is opening up to a lot of possibilities for herself. No longer only looking back at the past. I thought that was a big step....Please add her to your prayer list...So many miserable people out there Thunder. Your heart sharings are a bright star to them all!
Love Tina Chinook-Wagner
This picture taken at a lecture in Seattle is of all the Elders that had shown up to be with us that night...David Thompson, Tina Chinook-Wagner, Mattie Wolf (who you can barely see behind Tina), Grandfather Robert, Grandmother Emily, Grandmother Anna Haala, Katheryn Ravenwood (up), lady???, Will Longman, Ben & Chris Alexander &...Me with baby Olivia Victoria, who got a ceremonial baby blessing from us & all the Elders there. Mommy & Daddy look on...Laura & Jay Taylor-Jenson. It was a very good night.