I am a traditional Anmatjere man of central Australia, and I work as a sport and recreation officer in a small Aboriginal community called Titjikala, 110km south of Alice Springs. The languages spoken here are Eastern Aranda and Yuntjutijara. I've lived in Titjikala for 18 months and have found there are wonderful dreamtime stories tied to this land. Dream-time stories are Aboriginal stories about our creation.

Mr. Johnny Briscoe is the community minister and an elder at Titjikala. He is a member of the Lutheran Church and leads Bible studies one week every three months. He also travels to other communities and to Alice Springs to participate in Bible studies. I spoke with him about his traditional beliefs and Christianity. We also talked about the film Rabbit-Proof Fence.

The film is based on the actual lives of three young girls, and concerns what is called the stolen generation. (In Australia we call people who were taken as children from their parents by the government the stolen generation.) The film also explores the impact of Christianity on this generation and the significance of a long rabbit-proof fence. Because the three girls have light skin, they are forbidden to live their traditional lifestyles and are abducted by government agents. Where the girls live, a wire fence divides the land for hundreds of miles, and by following this fence they find their way home, escaping from a Christian mission home to trek hundreds of miles back to their people. It's an epic story of racism, courage, survival, and a government's attempt to control a generation's culture and people.

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'God has a plan—and it is good'
August 18, 2003

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