The Episcopal Church calls staff officer for racial reconciliation

Episcopal Church Office of Public Affairs
Posted Dec 4, 2019

The Rev. Isaiah Shaneequa Brokenleg has been appointed staff officer for racial reconciliation for The Episcopal Church, a member of the Presiding Bishop’s staff.

Brokenleg will work to catalyze and organize Episcopal efforts to embrace and practice Becoming Beloved Community, the church’s long-term commitment to racial reconciliation, healing and justice. She will support networks of regional leaders and coordinate church-wide efforts, especially around StorySharing, pilgrimage, anti-racism training and liturgical resource development. Brokenleg will partner closely with Rev. Chuck Wynder, staff officer for social justice engagement.

“We are thrilled to welcome Rev. Brokenleg – a seasoned, deeply soulful leader who is respected across our church and beyond – to now coordinate the church’s deeper engagement with Becoming Beloved Community,” said the Rev. Canon Stephanie Spellers, canon to the Presiding Bishop for evangelism, reconciliation and creation care.

The Rev. Melanie Mullen, director of the department of reconciliation, justice and creation care, said, “Rev. Brokenleg is an inspiring teacher, researcher, and lover of the people of God, and she brings just the wisdom and expertise we hoped for in this position.”

Mullen noted that there were over 40 qualified applicants for the position. “Racial reconciliation is central to the church’s calling, and many capable leaders are emerging in all parts of the church to inspire and lead us on new pathways to healing,” she said.

Brokenleg begins her new position on January 6, and can be reached at Learn more about Racial Reconciliation in The Episcopal Church at

Meet Rev. Brokenleg
The Rev. Isaiah “Shaneequa” Brokenleg is an enrolled member of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe (Sicangu Nation).  She is a priest in the Episcopal Diocese of South Dakota, where she grew up, and the place she calls home.

Brokenleg has a master of divinity from the Church Divinity School of the Pacific and a masters of public health from the University of Minnesota.  Prior to priesthood, she worked as a clinical epidemiologist, and served Indian Country in the Great Lakes region.

In her church life Brokenleg has served in multiple ministries as an acolyte, vestry member, member of her church’s social justice project, priest, and an Education for Ministry mentor.  Rev. Brokenleg has served the larger, Episcopal Church in several capacities, serving on the Executive Council Committee on Anti-Racism, the Standing Commission on Health, and most recently as a member of the Task-Force on Communion Across Difference.

Her cultural background provides a rich source of wisdom for this ministry. Brokenleg believes that we are all related (“mitakuye oyasin”), and that the Gospel calls us to be “good relatives” to one another.  Having grown up on the Rosebud reservation, she has experienced and witnessed the devastating effects of historical/generational trauma, colonization, and racism.  As a winktè (Lakota two-spirit), she is called to be a healer and move our communities in the direction of positive change, in the direction of reconciliation, toward living in right-relationship with one another.  She strives to live out her calling through her work, our church, her art, and in her life.