Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief commends MPs who voted in favour of Papal apology

ANISHINABEK NATION HEAD OFFICE (May 2, 2018)— The Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief Patrick Madahbee would like to commend the Members of Parliament on all sides of the House of Commons who voted in favour of extending an invitation to Pope Francis to apologize in-person to Indigenous peoples for the decades of abuse in residential schools across the country.

“Miigwech to the hundreds of MPs who did the right thing and voted yes for this motion in the House of Commons,” says Grand Council Chief Madahbee. “We only hope that the Catholic Church and their leader will see to reason and do the right thing by accepting the invitation—and to do what is long overdue— and apologize to the victims and survivors in-person. An apology from the Catholic Church and acknowledgement for its barbaric and monstrous abuse is the least it can do for the lifetime of pain and suffering it has inflicted upon its victims, survivors, families and the many generations that still feel the effects today. Our people need peace and healing. Our people have suffered enough!”

New Democratic Party member Charlie Angus and residential school survivor Romeo Saganash introduced the motion on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, May 1, 2018. The motion passed by a margin of 269-10. As Angus stood to vote, he held a feather as he cast his vote.

“Chi-miigwech to Charlie Angus and Romeo Saganash of the New Democratic Party and for the survivors of St. Anne’s for making the introduction of this important motion possible,” adds Grand Council Chief Madahbee.

This motion is a result of the Pope’s unfavourable decision in early March to forego an apology to residential school survivors and their families for the role the Roman Catholic Church played in the operation of the schools and abuses the students suffered.

A papal apology is #58 of the 94 Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) recommendations.

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