Statement from the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops
following the recent discovery
at the former Kamloops Indian Residential School
on the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation
On behalf of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB), I express our deepest sorrow for the heartrending loss of the children at the former Kamloops Indian Residential School on the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation.
The news of the recent discovery is shocking. It rekindles trauma in numerous communities across this land. Honouring the dignity of the lost little ones demands that the truth be brought to light.
This tragedy profoundly impacts Indigenous communities, with whom many people across this land and throughout the world now stand in solidarity.
As we see ever more clearly the pain and suffering of the past, the Bishops of Canada pledge to continue walking side by side with Indigenous Peoples in the present, seeking greater healing and reconciliation for the future.
We lift up prayers to the Lord for the children who have lost their lives and pledge our close accompaniment of Indigenous families and communities.
May our Creator God bless all of us with consolation and hope.
+ Richard Gagnon
Archbishop of Winnipeg and
President of the Canadian Conference
of Catholic Bishops
May 31, 2021
To find more resources from the CCCB on the residential school system and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, please click here: https://www.cccb.ca/indigenous-peoples/indian-residential-schools-and-trc.
O God, we praise and thank you for the blessings of life in Canada, from your natural
bounty and from the work of human hands.
We ask you to open our ears to the truths about our collective history shared with the
Truth and Reconciliation Commission by survivors of residential schools.
We ask you to open our minds to the complex and subtle ways that past mistakes,
arrogance, misuse of authority and sinfulness have damaged our social fabric in ways
we have barely begun to redress.
We ask you to open our hearts that we may continue to listen even when the truth
challenges us; that we may understand that we are heirs to a system that has shown
itself capable of domination and cruelty, whether or not we personally contributed; that
we may commit ourselves in all humility to do what we can and support the efforts of
others to restore our ruptured social fabric.
Source: Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon