New Haven Native American Church’s Constitution limits membership in the Native American Church to those who have been duly adopted by the President of the Church. This adoption is an ancient principle and Ceremony called "Making Relations." The Ceremony involves two parts: 1) that you perform by you in your location; and 2) which the President of the Church performs at this location.
The Native American Church allows individuals to exercise the freedom the Creator has given them to follow the dictates of religion according to how they feel directed by the Spirit. Members of the Native American Church must have sincere belief and a willingness to abide by the simple truths found in our Constitution and the Ethical Code of Conduct. The Church, however, does restrict membership to individuals at the age of accountability, that age being eight years old, and only to those who feel called by the Creator to become a Healer, which are also called Medicine Men and Medicine Women. All people can be healers and assist this world in becoming a better place. To be established as a Healer/Medicine Person, one must place themselves in one or more of the categories below.
1) As a Healer of people or animals. These are Medicine Men and Women of the Native American Church whose focus is in relieving the suffering of people or animals.
2) As a Healer of the family unit. These are Medicine Men and Women of the Native American Church who focus their ceremonial healing in family issues and in healing the values of family life.
3) As a Healer of the community. These are Medicine Men and Women of the Native American Church whose focus is more toward building up the Chapters, Communities, and so forth.
4) As a Healer of Society. These are Medicine Men and Women of the Native American Church that focus on repairing social systems or situations.
5) As a Healer of the Planet. These are Medicine Men and Women of the Native American Church whose focus is on restoring sustainable care of our Earth Mother and to educate others in the responsible use of her resources.
Membership in the New Haven Native American Church is permanent, meaning once an individual is a member of the Church Family, they can only be removed by their own personal request or by a serious infraction against the Church's Constitution or Ethical Code of Conduct. This practice of "Making Relations" or "Spiritual Adoption" is an ancient religious practice and should be taken seriously. This is the same principle that that Chief Joseph became Chief of the Nez Perce People, even though by today's accepted or legal standards, he could not be considered Nez Perce. Because of this ancient practice, Chief Joseph's signature was accepted as authoritative by the United States Federal Government in the Nez Perce Treaty.
The Native American Church has been recognized by the High Court as an "other organized group or community" of Indians and therefore all members of the Native American Church are legally defined as "Indians" even though they may not be enrolled members or recognized by any Tribe or Band. Also the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples states in Article 33 section one, "Indigenous peoples have the right to determine their own identity or membership in accordance with their customs and traditions."
There are many benefits, including legal ones, in becoming Spiritually Adopted, and any person of any ethnic background may request adoption if they have sincerity of belief. (Read more about the legal benefits under the "EDUCATION" tab above.) To be a "Member of Good Standing", one must be willing to make the following Declarations of Intention, as Covenant Obligations, which are described in the following:
1) It is my belief that Natural Medicine is a part of my established freedom to practice my Religion.
2) I will follow the practice of "First, Do Good" and I will, to the best of my ability, make this the guiding practice of my Healing Ministry.
3) For my development as a Healing Minister, I will faithfully study traditional healing methods and work to become educated in the various materials suggested by the President of the New Haven Native American Church.
4) I will donate from my surplus, as the Spirit directs, to the Church so that the Ministry of the Church may move forward and become fully established in all areas of the world. (The Church does not have a paid clergy so all donations go to building up the Church and giving greater support to its members.)
5) I will strive to establish a Native American Church Chapter in my area, if none is already present, and I will dedicate time, talent and resources, as suggested to me by the Spirit, to forward the purpose of that Chapter.
Covenant Obligations are the foundation of furthering the New Haven Native American Church's Ministry and Healing the World depends upon your faithfulness. If you feel that you can be true to the Declarations and can place yourself in at least one category above, then your request for Spiritual Adoption will be approved.
Please click open the Individual Spiritual Adoption Form button below and print out a copy. Complete the form and send it to:
New Haven NAC
P.O. Box 2045
Ava, MO 65608
Click here for the Individual Spiritual Adoption Form
Because of the expenses and time it takes to add a new member into our fold, any Spiritual Adoption form that includes an offering will be expedited to the top of the adoption process. We do not have a paid clergy so all offerings go to paying the expenses and moving forward the Missions of the Church. Thank You, Thank You, Thank You.