WCR This Week

Jay's WCR This Week Articles

Survivors witness to the Creator – Smith

Chief Robert Joseph

April 2, 2014
GLEN ARGAN
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Testimonies of residential school survivors given at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission event in Edmonton witness to the central place of God the Creator in aboriginal spirituality, Archbishop Richard Smith said March 28. That openness to the Creator allows the heart to be moved, and healing and reconciliation to take place, the archbishop said at a TRC session.

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Christians have role to play in public life, says ambassador

April 14, 2014
DEBORAH GYAPONG
CANADIAN CATHOLIC NEWS

OTTAWA – Andrew Bennett, Canada's ambassador of religious freedom, urged a Christian audience here April 4 to engage in the public sphere, proclaim truth and champion human dignity. Christians are very good at discussing politics, economics and social responsibility in private spaces "in which we feel safe and comfortable," Bennett said. "Yet, Christ does not call the Christian to be safe and comfortable."

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Alta bishops invite the faithful to March for Life

April 14, 2014
Dear Faithful People in Christ,

Human life is a wondrous and beautiful gift of God. Since God has created members of the human race in his image and likeness, every man, woman and child is endowed with an inalienable dignity. In our country, we are witnesses to the sad truth that human dignity is not always honoured. The obvious and most tragic example of this is abortion. It is manifest also in embryonic stem cell research, which destroys a human embryo, and in the promotion of euthanasia and assisted suicide.

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Mint honours John Paul II with special coins

April 14, 2014
DEBORAH GYAPONG
CANADIAN CATHOLIC NEWS

The Royal Canadian Mint unveiled gold and silver coins of Pope John Paul II to mark the pontiff's canonization April 27. "It's a good idea," said Saguenay Mayor Jean Tremblay after a ceremony in his city.

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Quebec's rejection of PQ halts values charter, euthanasia

April 14, 2014
DEBORAH GYAPONG
CANADIAN CATHOLIC NEWS

The surprisingly strong Quebec Liberal victory April 7 means euthanasia is off the table - for now – and signals a greater openness to religious Quebecers, say informed observers. The Quebec Liberal Party led by Philippe Couillard trounced the Parti Quebecois, winning 70 seats to the PQ's 30. The Coalition Avenir Quebec (CAQ) won three additional seats, bringing its tally to 22, while Quebec Solidaire won three seats.

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Oblates renew apology for residential schools

April 14, 2014
GLEN ARGAN
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

EDMONTON – The good that came out of the residential schools "came at an unbearable cost to the First Nations," says the provincial superior of the Catholic men's order that ran many of the schools. Father Ken Forster told the Truth and Reconciliation Commission March 29 that he was renewing the apology the Oblates of Mary Immaculate made to aboriginal people for their involvement in residential schools that was first offered at the 1991 Lac Ste. Anne Pilgrimage.

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Grey Nuns pained by testimonies of residential school survivors

April 14, 2014
GLEN ARGAN
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

EDMONTON – Some testimonies given at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission event "were very painful to hear," says the superior-general of the Grey Nuns. Sister Jacqueline St-Yves said, "I think we have to accept that there were some things that were not quite right" in the running of the residential schools. The Grey Nuns worked with the Oblates of Mary Immaculate in about eight of the 15 Catholic residential schools in Alberta, St-Yves said. Altogether, more than 800 members of her order worked in about 20 different schools over many decades.

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Parents told new atheists pose threat in education

April 14, 2014
CANADIAN CATHOLIC NEWS

OTTAWA – The great intellectual patrimony of the Catholic Church offers everything one needs to combat the new atheists, the vice president of an American Catholic college told parents here April 2. While atheism is an old idea, what's different about the so-called "new atheists," such as Richard Dawkins and the late Christopher Hitchens, is the way they attack religious belief, said Paul O'Reilly, vice president of Thomas Aquinas College in Santa Paula, Calif.

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Catholics feel the pain of school survivors

April 14, 2014
GLEN ARGAN
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Catholics who attended the Truth and Reconciliation Commission national event in Edmonton say they were horrified by the stories of abuse they heard from survivors of Church-run residential schools. "I am horrified by the stories, especially of abuse and violence by the staff who ran the schools," said Archbishop Gerard Pettipas of Grouard-McLennan.

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Voices of the survivors

April 14, 2014
GLEN ARGAN
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Ethel Lamothe of Fort Simpson still remembers being taken away in a boat with other children to the residential school at Fort Providence, N.W.T., when she was five years old. "All of us children, we all started crying. Our people, way over there, were getting smaller and smaller, and were crying. It was really, really difficult." During her first 10 months at the school, Ethel only saw one adult family member – her father – once.

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