The Archbishop of Canterbury has apologised for the “terrible crime” of the Anglican Church’s involvement in Canada’s residential schools – and for the Church of England’s “grievous sins” against the Indigenous peoples of Canada.
The Archbishop spent this weekend visiting Indigenous Canadian reserves, meeting with Indigenous leaders and Anglicans, and listening to residential school survivors, as part of a five-day visit to Canada.
Addressing survivors and Indigenous elders in Prince Albert on Sunday, the Archbishop said: “I am so sorry that the Church participated in the attempt – the failed attempt, because you rose above it and conquered it – to dehumanise and abuse those we should have embraced as brothers and sisters.”
He added: “I am more than humbled that you are even willing to attempt to listen to this apology, and to let us walk with you on the long journey of renewal and reconciliation.”
The Archbishop is visiting Canada to repent and atone for the Church of England’s legacy of colonialism and the harm done to Indigenous peoples – and to share in the Anglican Church of Canada’s reconciliation work with Indigenous, Inuit and Métis communities.
The Anglican Church committed grievous sins against the Indigenous, Inuit and Métis peoples of Canada.
I commit to walking with you on the long journey of renewal and reconciliation for as long as the Lord gives me strength to do so.https://t.co/KiAUOKtT5R
— Archbishop of Canterbury (@JustinWelby) May 2, 2022