During the royal tour of Canada, Prince Charles said society must “find new ways to confront the darker aspects of the past, to acknowledge them, to reconcile them and strive to do better”.
Prince Charles has called on communities to come together and address “the darker aspects of the past” and called on the Queen to apologize for the Anglican Church’s brutal treatment of Indigenous children in Canadian boarding schools.
On the first day of his royal tour with the Duchess of Cornwall, the heir said the process “starts with listening”.
From the late 19th century to 1996, a scandal raged in which children were removed from their communities before being placed in government schools.
Community leaders have in recent years demanded apologies and reparations from the Anglican Church, which ran 36 residential schools, the most of any religious denomination except the Roman Catholic Church, and ran more than 150 Indian day schools between 1820 and 1969.
Indigenous groups have long lobbied for redress from the Canadian government, and in recent times are receiving increasing credit for the horrors that have existed for decades.
After greeting the province of Newfoundland and Labrador at St. John’s Airport in the east of the country, the royals were joined by President Justin Trudeau at the Confederation Building.
Charles shook hands with several indigenous leaders representing the Innu Nation, the NunatuKavut Municipal Council, Saqamaw and the Chief of the Miawpokek First Nation and the Chief of the Qalipu First Nation.
In a speech, Charles, 73, said: “As we look to our future together, as a people sharing a planet, we must find new ways to confront, acknowledge, reconcile and accept the darker aspects of the past to strive for better.
“It’s a process that starts with listening.”
Following earlier public apologies last month from the Archbishop of Canterbury and Pope Francis to boarding school survivors, Métis National Council President Cassidy Caron says the Queen should be the next to apologize.
She said: “There is so much healing that is needed
“We need basic human needs in our communities and that stems from colonization.
“It comes from assimilation, and some financial reparations are absolutely helpful in helping us move forward.”
After his speech, Charles and Camilla participated in a “solemn moment of reflection and prayer” in a garden dedicated to the Indigenous victims of the school system – where thousands died or were mistreated.
Caron also said she plans to convey her request for the Queen to issue an official apology when she meets the royal couple later tomorrow on the Ottawa leg of her tour.
Canada has come to terms with the murky discovery last year of hundreds of human remains in unmarked graves in former church schools — facilities where generations of Indigenous children were forcibly relocated.
More than 150,000 Indigenous children have been forced to attend government-funded Christian boarding schools in order to integrate them into Canadian society.
Thousands of children died from disease and other causes, many never returning to their families.
The Canadian government has acknowledged that physical and sexual abuse was rampant in schools and students were beaten for speaking their mother tongue.
Piita Irniq, a former Nunavut commissioner, said he wanted Charles and Camilla to learn about the indigenous culture boarding schools they tried to destroy during their visit.
“You should also sincerely apologize for the loss of our very indigenous essence,” said Irniq, who survived the Sir Joseph Bernier Federal Day School in Chesterfield Inlet, 1,095 km west of Iqaluit.
“That would be a really good thing, also for healing and reconciliation between Anglicans and the royal people.”
Alternating between English and French as part of connecting with local people, Charles commended the province for hosting the 166 Ukrainian refugees last week, adding how the nation is: “A safe haven for those in need; A respected leader on the world stage; A much-needed voice to advocate for a greener and more sustainable future.”
Charles’ inaugural speech on the tour was welcomed by community leaders after the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Earl and Countess of Wessex criticized recent royal trips to the Caribbean.
Both have been criticized by activists demanding reparations for slavery or the conversion of their nations into republics, with some images of William and Kate’s visit to Jamaica being accused by critics of harking back to the colonial era.
During their three-day trip, which is part of Canada’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations, Charles and Camilla will also highlight causes they have championed in the past, from supporting victims of domestic violence to highlighting the issue of climate change and the Recognition of the Canadian Forces’ Role.
Charles and Camilla found time during their stopover in Newfoundland and Labrador to visit a local brewery famous for its 2,000-year-old ‘Iceberg Beer’ and ‘Iceberg Water’.
The couple will land in Ottawa tonight before heading to Yellowknife, the capital of the Northwest Territories, on Thursday.
In Ottawa, Charles will discuss the impact of global warming and work with leaders from the public, private and philanthropic sectors working to build a green economy.
With the Northwest Territories warming about three times faster than global warming, Charles will visit the Ice Road Passage or Yellowknife Bay to see the impact of climate change on local communities.
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/prince-charles-camillas-sorrow-over-26991749 Prince Charles and Camilla's grief over Canada's church schools is an abuse horror