In Navajo-land, it is so very helpful to be able to speak some Navajo, even if it is “yá’át’ééh”. Here at Villa Guadalupe, we are fortunate to have a Navajo class, given by Cecilia Held twice a week. Her students here at the home are various, including a couple of Sisters, one of our nurses, a C.N.A. who is a Navajo (we forget that it is usually a spoken language only, which means many do not read Navajo), a speech therapist (who works with many Navajos), a couple of Residents (including one who is Navajo who recently had a stroke and it has helped her speech), a home school teacher and one of her students.
We have not only learned words and phrases, but we have learned a variety of songs, many of which are traditional Navajo songs. We have sung in Navajo for the Christmas play (singing O Holy Night) and Easter (singing How Great Thou Art). Cecilia has also told us much about the culture, so to help us understand those that we love and serve!
It has been very important to know the words for different foods, since there are several Residents that have a difficult time with English.
To Cecilia we say: “Ahéhee” (thank you)!