Interfaith Ceremony at səlilwət (Burrard Inlet) Inlet- Maintains Opposition To Trans Mountain Pipeline

səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Territory/North Vancouver, B.C.— The Tsleil-Waututh Nation (TWN) Sacred Trust invites spiritual leaders across BC to participate in an interfaith ceremony to protect and honour səlilwət (Burrard Inlet).  

Sunday, June 9, at 9:00am 

Whey-ah-Wichen (Cates Park) in North Vancouver 
Brief press conference at 11:00am, when canoes return to the shore   

At this interfaith event co-hosted by the Sierra Club, we invite media to come and observe the ceremony, hear from interfaith leaders, and ask questions on their work to protect the waters.  

As the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion begins operations, this ceremony is a catalyst for faith-based leaders living on Coast Salish territories and their communities to renew their commitments to care for the air, lands and waters and stand in solidarity with səlilwətaɬ. Representatives from a wide range of faith traditions will be sharing in prayers and words. 

 “I’ve been lucky enough to share prayer with others protecting the water, land, and human rights all over the world,” says Rueben George, Sundance Chief and Manager of TWN Sacred Trust. “When we come together in naut’sa mawt, one heart, one mind, one prayer, our message is the same: we answer to Creator and the generations after us who ask if we did everything we could to protect our relatives.” 

“The completion of the pipeline represents a new stage in this work to protect the water, one that requires us to come together across faiths to reconnect with water which gives us life.” says Charlene Aleck, TWN Councillor. 

 Over $31 billion of taxpayer dollars have been spent on the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion and tanker project that puts the water, fish, salmon, orcas and human health at risk. In Tsleil-Waututh Nation’s own assessment of the project, leading experts from Simon Fraser University put the risk of an oil spill at 79 – 87 percent over a 50-year period. Even as the project fuels climate change, new climate impacts such as frequent and intense storms, floods, landslides and wildfires, make the project itself increasingly vulnerable to a spill that would devastate the surrounding lands and waters.  

The interfaith water ceremony will start early in the morning with a paddle on səlilwət (Burrard Inlet). On the water, faith and spiritual leaders will be invited to share prayers and offerings. On shore, after the work on the water, we will share a meal together and more spiritual teachings 


Event timeline: 

8:30 am- 10:30 early start for those going on the water 
11:00 am brief press conference once the canoes return to the shore 
11:30-12:30 pm lunch provided 
12:00-1:45 pm teachings from each spiritual community 


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