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“Not enough” apology to indigenous peoples

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Ottawa Case –

The pontiff did not explicitly address sexual violence against indigenous minors in missionary schools. Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Mark Miller declared the “gaps” in the papal apology “cannot be ignored”. Miller referred to alleged sexual abuse of members of the Catholic Church, and said Pope Francis spoke of “evil” committed by individual Christians, but “not the Catholic Church as an institution.”

Travel and Forgiveness –

On July 24, on his 37th apostolic visit, the Pope was welcomed at Edmonton Airport in Alberta by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and First Governor General and Representative of Canadian Indigenous Peoples Mary Simon. The Pope, upon arrival, kissed the tribal chief’s hand, setting the tone for a visit described by the head of the Church as a “pilgrimage of penance” to the forced integration of indigenous peoples for generations by Catholic missionaries. .

The following day the Pope met with the “survivors” of a missionary school in Masquais, where the Pope prayed and publicly apologized on behalf of the Catholic Church. Leaders of the Six Nations Treaty, which represents Canadian indigenous peoples, said that in addition to the apology, the church shed light on the fate of many children who did not return from missionary schools, and that it must pay reparations. , including in the form of indigenous artifacts held by the Vatican Museums.

On the same day, speaking to representatives of Native American communities, Francis acknowledged that his apology represented only the first step on the road to atonement: “You and many of your representatives have said that apologies are not a point of arrival. . . . I fully agree: they are only a first step, a starting point,” He said.

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“Looking at the past, I know that it will never be enough for you to apologize and try to repair the damage done, and looking at the future, I will never make light of all that you do to give life. I will avoid such situations from repeating themselves.” For a culture that has potential, but has not found space”, observed Bergoglio. “An important part of this process is to actively seek the truth about the past and to help residential school survivors navigate the path of healing from the trauma they experienced,” the Pope concluded.

Last Stage –

Meanwhile, on the fifth and final day of his visit to Canada, Pope Francis in Quebec devoted his agenda to relations with the Catholic community and clergy with two celebrations. Francis will preside at the 10am (4pm Italian time) Mass in the Saint Ann de Beaupre sanctuary and will lead Vespers at 5.15pm (11.15pm Italian time) with bishops, priests, deacons, saints, seminarians and saints. Pastoral workers at Notre Dame Cathedral. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will attend the Mass at 10 p.m.

During the Pope’s visit to Quebec City, Prime Minister Trudeau broke protocol by asking him to personally intervene in a meeting between the Pope and Marie Simon, the Governor General and representative of Indigenous Nations. The prime minister’s office explained that Trudeau was eager to publicly intervene “given the importance of the issue.” During his speech, the Prime Minister recalled that the Canadian Truth and Reconciliation Commission had apologized to the Church since 2015 for abuses committed in so-called residential schools.

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Prime Minister Trudeau also focused on the theme of the real reason for the Pope’s visit to Canada. “As your Holiness said, an apology is not the end of the matter, it is a starting point, the first step – he declares – on Monday morning, I sat down with survivors and asked for their reactions to his apology. She will draw what she needs to. But there is no doubt that she has had a huge impact. .Survivors and their descendants must be at the center of everything we do together in the future.

Pope’s warning to politics –

On his fourth day in Canada, Pope Francis’ warning to politics addressed other issues: “We must look to future generations, not to the immediate convenience of the election deadline,” the pontiff said from a trip to Canada. And in war, “senseless madness”: “There is no need to divide the world into friends and enemies, to rearrange ourselves to the teeth”, according to Bergoglio.

“The great challenges of today, such as peace, climate change, the consequences of epidemics and international migration, are common: they are global, they concern everyone. And if we talk about the need for all of them, we cannot be a political prisoner. . . vested interest “, warns the Pope.

“For immediate convenience, in the election period, without the support of lobbies, it is necessary to look at the seven future generations, as native wisdom teaches, to respect brotherhood, justice and aspirations. Peace of the younger generation,” he added. “There is a need for creative and far-sighted policies that know how to break out of partisan projects in order to respond to global challenges,” the Pope reiterates.

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And, “Today, in the face of the frenzy of senseless war, we must once again moderate the culmination of resistance and heal the wounds of hatred”. “There is no need to divide the world into friends and enemies, to distance ourselves and back to the teeth: the arms race and deterrence strategies will not bring peace and security – he says -. There is no need to ask. We ourselves continue wars, but how to prevent them. And fearful, with the grip of extended cold wars To prevent people from becoming hostages again.

In one of the central passages of his speech, Francis again points the finger at “policies of assimilation and liberation, including the residential school system that has damaged many indigenous families, undermining their language, culture and worldview.” “In that despicable system promoted by the government officials of the time – he says – which separated many children from their families and involved various local Catholic institutions; for this I express shame and pain, and together with the bishops of this country, I renew my request for forgiveness for the evil committed by many Christians against indigenous peoples. .

“It is tragic that the faithful, contrary to the Gospel, adapt themselves to the comforts of the world, as happened in that historical period”, the Pope underlines.

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