Canadian PM Demands Catholic Church Apology For Indigenous School Abuses
The discovery of the bodies of 215 children in a school building in Canada has sparked outrage. The bodies of local children were found in a church-run school.
The Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau has said that the church should admit responsibility for the incident after finding the remains of more than 200 children at a Catholic boarding school.
He also called on the Vatican, the spiritual centre of the Catholic faith, to step in and take responsibility for the incident.
The remains of the children were found at a boarding house school in the Canadian province of British Columbia. The bodies were discovered at the Kamloops Indian Boarding School in late May this year.
The silence of the Catholic Church
The church has not yet issued a statement on the children’s remains and has remained silent. In this context, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau criticized the church’s silence at a press conference on Friday, June 4. He condemned the interference and obstruction of Christian religious leaders in disclosing the details of church-supervised boarding schools.
According to Justin Trudeau, when he visited the Vatican four years ago, he spoke of taking notice of the church’s excesses, but no progress has been made and resistance continues. The Canadian prime minister has warned that strict disciplinary action will not be avoided if Catholic authorities do not release details of the boarding house school. He explained that he too was a Catholic and was disappointed with the attitude of the church.
Who is responsible for the abuses?
Between 1840 and 1996, there were more than 100 boarding house schools in Canada under the auspices of the government and religious institutions, including the Kamloops Indian Boarding School. More than 1.5 million children across Canada have been separated from their parents for education and transferred to boarding house schools. The aim was to promote European colonial culture among the children of the indigenous population and the children of the settlers.
Violence and sexual abuse were common in these boarding schools. During this time children were forced to convert to Christianity. In this context, the Canadian government has announced a solution. The United, Presbyterian and Anglican churches have apologized for the treatment of children during that time. So far, the Catholic Church has remained silent.
A positive development is that the Catholic Archdiocese of Vancouver, Canada, on Wednesday, June 2, apologized for the discovery of the remains of children at the Kamloops Indian Boarding House School. Neither the Roman Catholic Church nor the Vatican has commented on the matter.
At a conference of Canadian Catholic bishops in 2018, it was stated that the pope was not obliged to personally apologize for the abuses at boarding house schools.
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