AMERICA/CANADA - The dialogue between Catholic Bishops and indigenous delegates continues, to achieve "a brighter future"

Monday, 4 April 2022 pope francis   episcopal conferences   indigenous   reconciliation  


Ottawa (Agenzia Fides) - "We are deeply grateful to each of the indigenous delegates who came with us to the Holy See to share their experiences and their wishes for a better future for their people", said the President of the Canadian Bishops' Conference (CCCB ), Monsignor Raymond Poisson, at the end of his visit to the Vatican, from 28 March to 1 April (see Fides, 28/3/2022; 30/3/2022; 2/4/2022). "The Holy Father listened firsthand to the stories of those who have suffered at the hands of members of the Catholic Church and responded with compassion, sorrow and a genuine desire for truth, justice and healing", he highlighted.
The delegates - continues the note from the CCCB - shared several of their experiences, the time spent in residential schools, the loss of their culture and language, the complex relationships with the Catholic faith that continue to this day. Pope Francis was moved by their courage, their commitment and their resistance in the face of suffering. He stressed his shame at the Catholic Church's role in the residential school system and made a new commitment to visit indigenous peoples on Canadian soil.
For more than three years, a dialogue has been going on between Canada's Catholic bishops and their indigenous partners to discern the best way to embark on a path towards healing and reconciliation. As this dialogue continues the President of the CCCB, we have taken several important steps to support a better future, including the announcement of 30 million dollars to support healing and reconciliation initiatives, the commitment to ensure that documents of residential schools are made available to survivors and continue our efforts to educate our clergy, our consecrated men and women, and our lay faithful to indigenous cultures and spirituality. (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 4/4/2022)