A woman embraces her daughter during a rally at the former Kamloops Indian Residential School in Kamloops, British Columbia. CNS photo/Chris Helgren, Reuters

Dates set for Canadian Indigenous meeting with Pope Francis

  • June 29, 2021

Canadian delegations of First Nations, Métis and Inuit people will meet with Pope Francis at the Vatican Dec. 17-20.

“Pope Francis is deeply committed to hearing directly from Indigenous peoples, expressing his heartfelt closeness, addressing the impact of colonization and the role of the Church in the residential school system, in the hopes of responding to the suffering of Indigenous Peoples and the ongoing effects of intergenerational trauma,” the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) said in a June 29 statement announcing the dates.

The delegation include Elders/Knowledge Keepers, residential school survivors and youth from across the country, the CCCB said, accompanied by a small group of bishops and Indigenous leaders. 

The visit includes “personal encounters” with each of the three Indigenous groups, as well a final audience with all the delegates on Dec. 20.

“The Bishops of Canada reaffirm their sincere hope that these forthcoming encounters will lead to a shared future of peace and harmony between Indigenous Peoples and the Catholic Church in Canada,” said the CCCB statement.

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