Pope Francis’ visit to Canada Announced by the Vatican
May 13, 2022 – The Vatican announced today that Pope Francis would visit Edmonton, Quebec and Iqaluit from July 24 to July 29, 2022. A release from the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops is here.
Delegates from the Métis Nation–Saskatchewan (MN–S) had an audience with Pope Francis in Rome, March 28 till April 1, 2022, where Survivors shared their truths and lived experiences about residential schools.
A member of the Métis Nation delegation to Rome, boarding school survivor Elder Antoinette LaFleur said in response to the news of the Pope’s visit, “When I was there to share our stories….my last request was that I hope I will see him on our grounds one of these days. And now that I hear that he’s coming, not in Saskatchewan but in Alberta, it’s a pilgrimage site where he’s going called St. Anne. That’s where all the people flock in from the North. They find healing in the waters.”
The MN–S is extremely proud of the courage and strength of Elders and Survivors of residential schools and boarding schools for sharing their stories of survival and resiliency.
For the MN–S, the visit to the Vatican and the Pope’s trip to Canada represents only one step in pursuing reconciliation and justice for our survivors, their families, and communities.
In operation for over 100 years, the Île-à-la-Crosse boarding school housed children from across northern Saskatchewan, many of which were Métis. While survivors and families of other residential schools were compensated through the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement (IRSSA), Île-à-la-Crosse boarding school was omitted. In 2019, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Government of Canada and a steering committee representing Île-à-la-Crosse Boarding School survivors to begin the discussion to resolve the legacy of the Boarding School. It is imperative that this process is finalized before more Survivors are lost.
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