Catholic Bishops of Canada apologize to Indigenous Peoples for role in residential schools

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Emotional support or assistance for those affected by the residential school system can be found at the Indian Residential School Survivors Society toll-free at 1 (800) 721-0066 or 24-hour Crisis Line 1 (866) 925-4419.

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VANCOUVER (News 1130) – The National Assembly of Bishops is “apparently” apologizing to the indigenous peoples suffering in Canada’s Indian residential schools, taking responsibility for the role of Catholic Church members and the generations of damage it caused Is.

“We acknowledge that there was severe abuse by some members of our Catholic community; physical, psychological, emotional, spiritual, cultural and sexual,” reads a statement From the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) on Friday.

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“We sadly acknowledge the historical and ongoing trauma and legacy of suffering and challenges faced by indigenous peoples that continue to this day. Together with the Catholic institutions that were directly involved in the running of the schools and To those who have already made our heartfelt apologies, we, the Catholic Bishops of Canada, express our deepest remorse and express our sincere apologies.”

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The CCCB says it is “fully committed” to healing and reconciliation, and pledges fundraising to support it across Canada.

“We invite Indigenous peoples to visit us in a new era of reconciliation, to help us prioritize healing initiatives in each of our diocese across the country, to listen to the experience of indigenous peoples, especially specifically for the survivors of Indian residential schools, and for educating our clergy, holy men and women, and belief in indigenous cultures and spirituality.”

It also promises to provide documentation and records “that will aid in the creation of memorials to those buried in unmarked graves.”

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Canada’s first statement came less than a week ago National Day for Truth and ReconciliationA federal statutory holiday to remember and honor the lost children and survivors of residential schools, their families and communities.

Back in juneThe Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops faced criticism online for saying, “The Catholic Church in Canada as a whole was not affiliated with residential schools, nor the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops.”

The statement came after the prime minister sought an apology from the Vatican and the Catholic Church to release its document on residential schools.

RELATED VIDEO: Pressure mounts to release residential school records

One of 94 calls for action by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission It was for the Pope to apologize for the church’s role in a system in which 150,000 First Nations, Inuit and Métis children were taken from their families and confined in circumstances that constituted cultural genocide.

More than 1,000 unmarked graves, widely believed to be children’s, have been found at the sites of several former residential schools across Canada.

in May, thanks to the first nation Using ground-penetrating radar, the remains of 215 children were confirmed – some of whom are under three years old. A search of the site of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School, once the largest in Canada’s residential school system, renewed the call to search the sites all across the country.

less than a month later, Confirmation of Cause’s First Nation 751 unmarked graves were uncovered on the grounds of the former Maryval Indian Residential School in Saskatchewan. Later in June, lower truncating said that a search using ground-penetrating radar found 182 human remains in unmarked graves near Cranbrook, where the Kootenay Indian Residential School once stood. Soon after, the Penelkut tribe confirmed more than 160 unmarked, unspecified graves in their area at the site of the Kuper Island Indian Residential School.

The news has sparked national outrage and mourning, and has sparked growing calls for the federal government and church to investigate more potential school burial sites.

With files from Lisa Stacy

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