Issues- Press Releases from Hotevilla Priesthood Assembly

January 6, 1997- In a historic meeting held on Jan 5, 1997 at the Kokop clan house in Hotevilla, members of the four Hopi religious priesthoods decided to restrict access to the village. Severe limitations were put on new-age interpretation and appropriation of Hopi religious practices which include the disassembling of their shrines on Hotevilla lands. They also agreed to expose self appointed leaders and spokespersons of Hotevilla.

Kyashongewma, Neil Kayquoptewa who called for the meeting stated, "All my life we here in Hotevilla have been plagued by self appointed leaders who have created confusion in this village with the support of outsiders. We have talked about meeting on this for a number of years and now the priesthood members have made their decision."

Neil, who is 82 years old has been appointed through traditional practices to lead the village through the current cycle. It was decided to invoke the kiva practices which require each member to state his position and truth from the authority of the kiva into which they have been initiated, which is also considered his home.


We the ordained members of the first Wimi, the original religious instructions, have gathered on this day of January 5, 1997 at the Kokop clan house in Hotevilla. In consultation among the four priesthoods Aalt, Wuwuchim, Tataukyam and Kwakwant together we set forth our tunatya, our wishes :

1. That all people outside of our village and our jurisdiction stop interfering in our religious affairs and religious practices and That the village ceremonial and religious events are closed to non-Hopis.

2. That all non-Hopi shrines be obliterated from Hotevilla lands

3. That self designated religious leaders be exposed and stopped.

4. That all people accepting our hospitality learn and accept our ways of proper conduct and respect before entering our village.


Josovi Kiva-Wuwuchim members

Kyashhongewma-Neil Kayquaptewa, and Tsosyumptewa- Franklin Suhu

Kwan Kiva -Kwakwant members

Roger Nasevaema, Wilton Kooyahoema, Enos Selestewa, Hugh Tenakhongva

Hawiovi Kiva -Wuwuchim members

Dan Evehema,Wuwuchim Member absent Declines to sign

StanleyDash,Wuwuchim Member

Nasavi Kiva-Aalt member

Leslie Kootshongsie,

Tsukiva-Wuwuchim members

Humihoima-Simon Wuwuchim, Homer Koyiyumptewa, Posiwyawma-Carrol (in rest home)

Tao Kiva-Tao members

Wesley Honanie, Poleykuiva Matthew (absent) Paul Sewemaenewa (absent)



Press Release-1/20/97 HOTEVILLA, AZ.-In a followup meeting, member's of Hotevilla's four religious fraternities( Aalt, Wuwuchimt, Tatawkaymt, Kwakwant) con-firmed that the village is closed to those who have shown disregard and disrespect during religious and ceremonial activities at Hotevilla, including certain individuals and/or outside groups who continue to cause disruption and confrontation.

Elaborating on the restrictions they reminded the people that a Hopi is one who has received the full religious instructions. After that a Hopi is one whose mother is Hopi. Recognizing other Indians who have been initiated into the Katsina society, they are reminded they have priveleges and a reason to be present at the ceremonies. In-laws were also included in those invited to be present at the ceremonies. Finally those type of relationships that promote good and respectful exchanges between Hotevilla Sinom and Non-Hopit were encouraged.

The recent developments are a direct result of years of abuse from outsiders who have made Hotevilla religious and ceremonial activities a spectacle. Non-Hopit have come to Hotevilla in the past and have followed religious processions too closely, imitated Hopi religious/ ceremonial activities, i.e., Paho (Prayer Feather) and shrine making, which shows disrespect for Hopi traditions and culture. Some Non-Hopit have taken various religious items from Hopi shrines and illegally bought old Hopi artifacts, some of which had high religious significance.

A priority is the matter of individuals and groups who have used the name Hotevilla and/or Hopi to promote themselves, their causes and organizations without acknowledging respected and accepted community practices. These people have appropriated Hotevilla traditional/ religious Navoti (knowledge) for self promotion and personal economic gain. The Wiwimkyam want the public to know that certain individuals and groups must be exposed and the public record set straight on these people.

The group restated their authority as originating from the assembly of Wiwimkyam and not one single individual. They wanted this repeated and understood.

A deliberate accounting of their positions on these matters will be released in a thoughtful manner. A public meeting is anticipated soon. Meanwhile the Hotevilla Community development office has been designated as the information referral center. For more information call: 520-734-2420.


Hotevilla. Press Release-2/4/97

Following the recent night dances at Hotevilla it has become clear that Martin Gasweseoma and Dan Evehema will continue to encourage their supporters to defy the assembly of Wiwimkyam. Unwelcome individuals attended the dances in Hawiovi Kiva and outside, in direct defiance of the closure terms. In response to these individuals and their supporters the Wiwimkyam assembly are resolved to expose the reckless behavior of these two self-appointed chiefs.

Martin and Dan do not hold any positions of religious authority in Hotevilla. Succession to leadership positions in Hotevilla are as follows: The Kikmongwi (village chief) and the Wim Momgwit (high priests) hold life long positions or until they no longer can perform the physical requirements of their position. They are selected while in the mother's womb. They are ordained in a hairwashing ritual by the Kwakwant. Then they are instructed in the physical, natural and spiritual laws of the Land and their responsibilities to the people, by the assembly of high priests at the Kokop Clan house, wherein resides Masau. This same assembly removes irresponsible leaders. Martin and Dan have never gone through this process. No Bear Clan person has been Kikmongwi at Hotevilla. Poliwuhioma from the Bluebird Clan has served as Kikmongwi, during Patcavu. He passed this on to Siwihoima who then instructed Lomahoima. Yukioma and Pongyayawma (Kokop Clan uncle and nephew) have served as caretakers of the land, beyond the village proper, through safekeeping of the stone tablets, holding them in trust for the people. These tablets provides safe passage for the people so they have served the people in the village and throughout Hopi lands, through this service. This has been the leadership at Hotevilla.

Martin and Dan are aware of their responsibilities in the community which does not include the authority to speak for the people. Dan claims Greasewood Clan, Katsina and Snake leadership and holds none of these but only membership in the Wuwuchim and in that membership he takes direction from the Wuwuchim at the Mong (Chief) Kiva. He has never been seen smoking and praying at the Katsin-ki, or any other Kiva during religious events, nor at community events such as weddings.

Both know that a Hopi leader stays at home, available to the community but Martin's trips abroad selling his message are well known and Dan is seldom seen in the village. Both are engaged in Paho making outside of religiously prescribed places and times. Persons not entitled to this ritual are learning from them and so are engaged in the mockery of original, accepted practices.

Martin and Dan try to emulate Yukioma's resolve never to accept the Whiteman's goods. The Whitemen arrive daily at Martin's house with material goods. Dan seeks contributions over the internet. Thomas Banyacya, Manuel Hoyungowa, Rena Murillo, Emory Holmes and non-Hopis Katherine Chesire (founder of Touch the Earth Foundation), Thomas E. Mails (author of Hotevilla, The Hopi Survival Kit, Native American Pathways, Mystic Warriors of the Plains) and Roy Steevenz continue to seek contributions for Hotevilla, supposedly with the Elders' blessings. Do not send contributions to Hotevilla, on their behalf or those of Caretaker's of Hotvela in Hopi and Hopi Sinom. Also be wary of contributions to Hotevilla through, Don't Waste Arizona, Inc..

The people of Hotevilla will confirm this information. Those from outside the community who continue to create conflict are in headlong collision with the community.

Gratitude is extended to the non-Hopi friends who respected the closure and showed restraint although they had a long history of attending these events. Gratitude also goes out to those assisting with the distribution of this information.

On file, Eleven (11) of fifteen (15) Wiwimkyam signatories to Tunatya. For more information call: Phone: 520-734-2420