Healing Takes Time

Catholics involved in the reconciliation process over the Indian residential school system in Canada say continued understanding requires action. “It isn’t by making laws you are going to overcome racism,” said Archbishop Gerard Pettipas, president of 50 Catholic Entities, the legal body formed to respond to the litigation that led to the 2007 Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement. “Look at what’s continuing to happen in the United States with black Americans,” the archbishop, who leads the Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan in Alberta, Canada, said. “You still have white cops killing black kids. A lot has to happen at the grass roots and for people to come to a conversion in their own hearts about the issues. That takes time.” The archbishop said the Truth and Reconciliation Commission members, who released their final report to the public on Dec. 15, also knew there was more work to do. The report built on an executive summary in June that referred to what happened to aboriginal Canadians in residential schools as “cultural genocide.”

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement
Advertisement

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

February has been one of the most violent months in the seven years of conflict.
Gerard O’ConnellFebruary 25, 2018
Asia Bibi's husband and her daughter Eisham arrive in the Vatican prior to a private meeting with Pope Francis. (Credit: Vatican News)
The pope said Rebecca Bitrus and Asia Bibi are models for a society that today has ever more fear of suffering.
Gerard O’ConnellFebruary 24, 2018
(Nick Ansell/PA via AP, archive)
Recent allegations about one of the United Kingdom’s biggest and best-known charities has driven increased demands from some quarters that overseas aid be reduced, if not abolished completely.
David StewartFebruary 23, 2018
Students who walked out of classes from Montgomery County Public Schools in Maryland protest against gun violence in front of the White House on Feb. 21 in Washington. (CNS photo/Kevin Lamarque, Reuters)
The desire for stronger gun control may not translate into more caution with gun storage among owners of firearms.
Kevin ClarkeFebruary 23, 2018