OTTAWA (ON), April 1, 2022 /CNW/ – This is a historic and emotional day for Indigenous peoples Canada. I am grateful for the words of His Holiness Pope Francis, who took to heart what he heard this week. These are a meaningful apology that we have been waiting for for a long time.

Today, I am optimistic. Although the scars of residential schools remain, Indigenous peoples have renewed hope that healing is possible. Despite all that we have suffered and all that we have lost, we are still here. We are still strong.

An apology is a step on the road to reconciliation, but it is just that: a step. We must always strive to recognize the pain and the truth of our history. It’s about stories—my story, your story, the stories of our people. Hearing our truths will guide us on our path to reconciliation.

It’s a day full of hope, but it must be backed by action. I am happy that His Holiness has committed to visit Canada continue the journey of reconciliation with Indigenous peoples on their own lands. And, as I’ve done throughout my life, I’m willing to do the hard work, hold the tough conversations, and encourage wisdom and compassion.

In Inuktitut we say ajuinnata— a promise to never give up, to persevere. Let’s all raise our voices, through Canadain the spirit of ajuinnatato foster understanding, respect and reconciliation.

Mary Simon

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SOURCE Governor General of Canada

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