Thursday, September 16, 2010
Me and Mine The Life Story of Helen Sekaquaptewa
Helen Sekaquaptewa was a convert to the LDS church and in her life story she tells a few interesting stories that I would just like to cover really quick. My Uncle Bill who served his mission among the Hopi (in 1955-1957) knew her personally and her husband Emory and spoke highly of them.
In Helens life story she tells of some of the teachings that her father shared with her. During the long winter evenings he would share the teachings of the kiva, saying "You are young now and may not be interested , but I must teach you now while I am here with you. As you grow older, then you will learn to understand and know it is the truth. " This has come to pass. He said.
" The white man has kept a written record of the history of the people from the beginning, while the Hopis have passed their history from one generation to another by word of mouth. With the telling over the years, some of it has been omitted or misunderstood, and changes have been made. The written record is more accurate and true. There will come a time when the written record will be brought to the Hopi's by the white man. There will be many religions taught. You will need to be wise to recognize and choose the right church. It will teach you to be humble and will not try to force you into it. When that time comes we should forsake our native religion and join this true church, and we will all speak the same language and be as one people."
He said this many times, and at the end he would say, "I tell you this because you are my own blood. I want you to take this to heart and teach it to your children. I want you and your children to live by those teachings and benefit by what I have said." Both Emory and I heard him say this long before we ever heard of the Book of Mormon.
She later advised that when her and her husband had read the Book of Mormon and the Bible it made her Hopi traditions make since and her Hopi traditions helped her understand the Book of Mormon and Bible better. Later on she said,
"When the Mormon missionaries came to Second Mesa, they taught the first chapters of the Book of Mormon, telling of a prophet named Lehi who was told by the Lord to take his family, a wife and four sons, and leave Jerusalem because that city was going to be destroyed because of the wickedness of the inhabitants (this in the year 600 B.C.), how they journeyed many days in the wilderness on their way to the sea, how Lehi sent his sons back to Jerusalem to get their records of their forefathers and the teachings of their prophets, how they were led to a land that was choice above all other lands, having crossed the mighty waters and landed in America.
The head priests of the Hopis at Second Mesa, hearing these things, accosted the Elders and angrily said, "How come you know these things?" Only older men, high in the priesthood, know that. You keep your mouths shut."
Helen raised her family in the church and even though her father never converted he later on in life told Helen, "I marvel at the way you stood up against all the people, and we have all lived better because of it." He also complimented her on the great way she raised her family.
I share this as more evidence that the Hopi are indeed decendants of the people in the Book of Mormon and one day the prophecies concerning them will indeed be fulfilled.