Mark works with numerous tribes and indigenous communities in the United States and around the world on how best to hold onto indigenous cultures, languages, world views and educational models while living in highly Western and assimilated environments. (www.worship.calvin.edu/
Studying the Navajo perception of time and the affect it has on student’s academic success while attending colleges and universities located off the reservation.
Developed and coordinates the Global Discipleship Network project which brings together church leaders from the CRC in North America and from international partners into a learning circle for mutual discipleship. (http://www.crcna.org/pages/crwm_global_discipleship.
Served as pastor for 2 years and continues to preach in churches around the Navajo reservation and throughout the country.
Engages communities and the nation on political issues in order to strengthen a national political voice for Native America, e.g. immigration reform and creating a 51st virtual Native American state. (www.51vNAs.org)
Many of Mark’s published articles can also be found on his blog, “Reflections from the Hogan” (www.wirelesshogan.blogspot.
A hogan is the traditional Navajo home. While it symbolizes the historical and cultural dwellings of my people, it also reflects the daily life for many Navajos today. While the Navajo Nation is the largest US reservation and is home to about 180,000 Navajos, it is one of the least developed areas of the United States. Lack of running water, electricity, and many common amenities is typical for many Navajo homes today.
My family and I lived in the hogan pictured above in a remote area of the reservation for 3 years in order to gain an understanding of the traditional Navajo life. Since I supported my family through computer consulting, I managed to do so through my laptop, using my cell phone for internet connection, all on battery power.
It is out of this perspective that the term Wirelesshogan grew. Since hogans typically are "wireless," i.e. without electricity, Wirelesshogan reminds us of the current physical state that many Navajos live in. It also refers to the crossroads of traditional Navajo lifestyle in the midst of modern America.