Canada’s indigenous communities ‘expecting more’ from Pope’s visit, says Gov. Gen. Mary Simon

Image: Mary Simon Twitter page of Phyllis Webster

Canada’s Gov. Gen. Mary Simon has reportedly said that the indigenous communities are “expecting more” from Pope Francis when he visits Canada in July, says, adding that she is not sure if he’ll deliver.

When the Pope apologized for abuses at residential schools, he faced criticism for taking responsibility for the role of the wider institution by denouncing the conduct of some members of the Catholic Church.

First Nations community was also concerned that the qualified apology did not address the issue of compensation, document disclosure, or the extradition and prosecution of those known to have participated in abuse.

The Pope is expected to visit Canada in July, to reiterate the apology on Indigenous land.

“I suspect that it’s going to be similar to what he said at the Vatican, but people are expecting more — that he will include the Church as an institution,” Simon told The Current’s Matt Galloway in an interview in Rideau Hall. 

“I don’t know if that will happen or not … I’m just talking about some of the expectations that I’ve heard from some of the Indigenous leaders,” she said, CBC News reported.

Simon reportedly said that as Governor-General, part of her role is to increase awareness of what happened to Indigenous peoples that allows people to understand why reconciliation is needed.

Earlier this month, Queen Elizabeth was also called by Indigenous leaders to apologize for the operation of residential schools and for the harmful effects of colonization, but the Queen reportedly siad that she is not involved in political issues with this job.

With her belief that Canada is moving forward on reconciliation, she wants to help people find ways to live together respectfully, with equal opportunity, and the freedom to express different cultures, languages and diversity.

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