St. George’s Chapel in Harbeson invited members of the Nanticoke Indian Tribe to participate in the annual observance of Rogation Sunday May 19. The tercentenary event was in recognition of the Nanticoke Indians, who have a historical connection dating back to Colonial times.
Rogation Sunday traditionally celebrates the blessing of the fields, seeds, farming implements, and animals, as well as boats, nets and bait – all acknowledging the dependence on God throughout the production cycles on the farm and on the sea.
Nanticoke Chief Natosha Carmine delivered a short history of the Nanticoke tribe along with documented evidence of many tribe members who were christened at St. George’s Chapel in the 18th century.
Following the sermon, with congregants assembled outside the chapel, tribe member Herman Jackson blessed the fields in the Nanticoke tradition with a ceremony called smudging. All attending were treated to a dance presentation and storytelling by the tribe members dressed in native regalia. A lunch of Native American food was served at the conclusion of the event.