An Indigenous Christmas Story

An Indigenous Christmas Story

Rediscovered and digitally rejuvenated by the Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages (LAAL), a collection of Indigenous Christmas stories, originally penned over 30 years ago by children in the Northern Territory, is now being shared with the global online community this holiday season.

These Christmas-themed stories were originally part of a bilingual literacy program. Children practised both English and Indigenous languages like Pitjantjatjara and Kriol, creating a collection that forms a small yet significant part of a larger archive. 

One such story, originally written in Kriol, narrates the tale of the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem, as told from a shepherd’s perspective. Authored by Judy Galmur.

An Indigenous Christmas Story - Something Special

"Three shepherds, me and my two mates, were minding our sheep. I want to tell you this special thing that happened to me...

Well, one night, I was sitting on the ground minding my sheep, and yarning with my two mates. Later on, a big bright star shone on us.
We were really frightened and sat quietly. And the angel of God said to us, "Don't be afraid of me, I bring good news. Baby Jesus has been born in Bethlehem."
Me and my two mates said to each other, "Let's go and see the baby Jesus in Bethlehem." So I started to travel a long way to that place Bethlehem with my two mates.
When I got to Bethlehem, I went into the stable with my two mates and we found Mary and Joseph. And baby Jesus was wrapped up in a blanket and sleeping in a manger.
And I was really happy and so were my two mates.

So then we went back and told everybody that baby Jesus was born."

Read the story in Kriol

Explore and Learn More

To delve deeper into these stories and the work of the LAAL, visit their website. It's a portal to a world of Indigenous knowledge and storytelling, a place where history is kept alive for future generations to learn from and enjoy.

As we celebrate this Christmas, let's take a moment to appreciate the diverse narratives that shape our world. These Indigenous stories are not just tales from the past; they are living, breathing pieces of history that continue to teach and inspire.

Merry Christmas from the BW Tribal Family!