QUÉBEC, July 25, 2022 /CNW/ – Quebec–Her Excellency the Right Honourable Mary Simon, Governor General of Canada, today issued the following statement regarding His Holiness Pope Francis’ apology in Maskwacis, Alberta:
“Today, Survivors, their families and communities across the country heard His Holiness Pope Francis apologize, expressing words of deep sorrow, regret and horror for the abuse experienced in the residential school system.
There are certain undeniable facts. Truths of our history that are difficult to face. We know that Indigenous children were cruelly taken away from their homes. Families were torn apart. And the impact of those actions reverberate to this day. Indigenous peoples, especially Survivors, have lived with a legacy of abuse that has left scars on their lives, and on the lives of those who love them. Some children and families have never recovered. Some children never made it home at all.
Throughout the years, months and weeks that have led to this historic moment, Indigenous communities have shown nothing but bravery, courage and resilience as they pursued a meaningful apology. Today was a day that moved us forward, giving Survivors words that may help them heal. Yet it is also a day that can raise complex emotions, especially as the Papal visit continues. It is for each Survivor and their families to decide how they feel and what they need to move forward. And it is for each of us to continue embracing hope and supporting reconciliation not just through words, but also through actions.
Today, we are reminded that human beings are imperfect, and that institutions can do great harm without vigilant leadership. But we are also reminded that the human spirit can persevere and that, by working together, we can make real progress through reconciliation.
For Indigenous peoples, this is neither the beginning nor the end of the healing journey. As a country, we must ask ourselves, “Where do we want to go next? Who do we want to be?” As we continue our conversation on reconciliation, let us all work together in a spirit of hope and renewal to help build a more just society and a better tomorrow.”
SOURCE Governor General of Canada