Today’s article on Blessed Olga highlights the enduring legacy of Orthodox Christianity in Alaska, particularly how it became inseparably woven into the fabric of Native culture, tradition and morality.
Blessed Olga was a modern-day Yup’ik woman of profound Christian faith who lived a subsistence life along the Kuskokwim River. The fact that she cared for the poor, and supported pregnant and abused women might lead one to think she would be celebrated by all groups claiming to be advocates of indigenous cultures and women’s rights.
Unfortunately, you won’t hear a peep about Blessed Olga from modern, leftist activist groups in Alaska. While they claim to be champions of Native spirituality, subsistence lifestyles and women’s rights, they have absolutely no use for the Christian faith that countless Alaska Natives have embraced and passed down for generations.
Villages across the state are graced with iconic Orthodox churches, as well as beautiful cemeteries filled with beloved ancestors and elders. As they have for centuries, many Alaska Natives pray in these houses of worship, which have been a source of hope and inspiration for ages.
Rather than celebrating this reality, modern leftist organizations like Native Movement, Fireweed Collective, Planned Parenthood and the ACLU want nothing to do with this distinctive indigenous expression of Christianity. They are too busy claiming that abortion, anti-colonialism, transgenderism and climate alarmism are somehow the defining concerns for Alaska Natives.
Beloved heroes like Blessed Olga do not fit the narrative. She spent her life worshiping Christ, raising eight children, supporting her priestly husband and serving the less fortunate with incredible generosity.
She could not – and cannot – be enlisted in this globalist effort to impose a radical, woke ideology on her people.
The views expressed here are those of the author.