The FSIN says the Pope and the Catholic Church needs to apologize to Indian Residential School Survivors. The Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations says the Catholic Church also needs to release all of its records relating to First Nations children at residential schools across Canada. At a news conference Friday morning in Saskatoon FSIN Vice Chief David Pratt said there needs to be mental health supports and investment in survivors moving forward.
Kinistin Chief Felix Thomas says their ceremonies and languages needed to be respected and observed in efforts at reparation in regards to residential schools because those were taken from Indigenous people forced into residential schools. He also says the concept of “let’s move on” has been tried and it doesn’t work, instead they need everyone to be part of the act of healing.
Vice Chief Pratt says they hope the Pope will pay a visit to Canada and points out many Indigenous people are Catholic for their own healing they need to hear the leader of their church recognize the harms that were visited upon them. As well, he suggests a show of solidarity by Catholics not showing up in church on Sunday but rather, pray at home in their own way.
Pratt also says the City of Victoria has cancelled Canada Day celebrations to honour residential school victims and he thinks that’s a good idea.