The Pope’s visit to Canada is seen as the beginning of Alberta’s recovery

The Pope will stop in Edmonton, a city incorporated on Treaty 6 lands. The senior president of the First Nations League, George Arcand Jr., is pleased to have participated in the discussions surrounding the announcement of the Pope’s visit.

Six Aboriginal residential schools were built on his community grounds, and he still sees the traumatic effects of the atrocities committed in these facilities.

It’s the beginning, the beginning of a process of coming to terms with what happened in those Indian boarding schools. »

Quote from Georges Arcand Jr., Grand President of the 6th Confederacy Convention

Apologies, what next?

According to Richard Smith, Pope’s Journey Coordinator for the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (Customs Cooperation Council), the eminent Pope must repeat the solemn apology to the Catholic Church on Canadian soil.

Even if they are welcomed, according to Georges Arcand Fils, many members of his community are asking for more. He believes the Catholic Church needs to follow up its apology with discussions about how to help boarding school survivors.

Apologies are a way to open up the discussion about how to make sure this never happens again and educate people to understand why we are overrepresented in health and social care systems. [ainsi que dans les statistiques de] Fellshe adds.

Senior President George Arcand Jr. highlighted the survivors’ work to obtain an apology from the Pope and a visit to Canada.

Photo: Radio Canada

The Grand Leader hopes the Pope can stop at the historic pilgrimage site of Lac Sainte Anne, a place sacred to Catholics and Aboriginal people.

Jack Lloyd Sebagham, a residential school survivor, came to light a candle. The idea that the Pope would come to Alberta to apologize brings tears to his eyes.

That would be great. It will be something memorable. »

Quote from Jack Lloyd Sebagham, residential school survivor

He is the head of the Catholic Church and should be a role model he explains.

Two buildings in front of a lake in a meadow.

The Lac Sainte-Anne pilgrimage has been a place of Catholic gathering for First Nations and Métis since the 19th century.

Photo: Radio Canada/Travis McEwan

In a statement, Alberta Nation President Métis expressed the same sentiments. [Cette visite] It is a new step on the road to reconciliation after the historic visit of the Vatican in AprilShe said. The nation wishes to work with the Holy See so that these members and, above all, survivors can participate in the events of the papal visit.

political reactions

Alberta Premier Jason Kenny, a devout Catholic, wrote that he is looking forward to welcoming Pope Francis this summer.

The City of Edmonton works with Customs Cooperation Council To provide logistical support to organize this trip.

Edmonton is firmly committed to the path of truth and reconciliation, and in that spirit we will welcome Pope Francis to our city. We will work with him and local spiritual leaders to repair the pain and intergenerational trauma that boarding schools cause.Edmonton Mayor Amargit Souhy said in a statement.

The Pope’s itinerary will be announced in the coming weeks.

With information from Audrey Nephew and Travis McEwan

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