Pontiff concludes ‘penitential pilgrimage’ of reconciliation between Catholic Church and Indigenous people
While the word genocide wasn’t heard in any of Pope Francis’s addresses during a week-long trip to Canada, on his flight back to Rome, he said everything he described about the residential school system and its forced assimilation of Indigenous children amounts to genocide.
“I didn’t use the word genocide because it didn’t come to mind but I described genocide,” Pope Francis told reporters on the papal flight from Iqaluit to Rome on Friday. Over the last week, the Pope visited Edmonton, Quebec City and Iqaluit on a “penitential pilgrimage” of healing, reconciliation and hope between the Catholic Church and Indigenous people.
While addressing residential school survivors and their families in Maskwacis, Alta., Francis expressed deep sorrow for harms suffered at the church-run schools and asked for forgiveness “for the wrong done by so many Christians to the Indigenous peoples.”
The Catholic Church ran over half of the residential schools in Canada. More than 150,000 First Nations, Métis and Inuit children were forced to attend the government-funded schools between the 1870s and 1997.
For the rest of this article: https://www.cbc.ca/news/indigenous/pope-francis-residential-schools-genocide-1.6537203