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Something to ponder

The creation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) in Canada was a significant turning point in the country’s endeavor to acknowledge and rectify the deep-seated injustices suffered by Indigenous peoples, especially those who experienced the residential school system. The TRC, established in 2008, played a crucial role in the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement (IRSSA), demonstrating a shared determination to address a troubling period in Canadian history and facilitate the process of healing and reconciliation.

Between the late 19th century and the closure of the final residential school in 1996, more than 150,000 Indigenous children were forcefully separated from their families and placed in residential schools that were sponsored by the government and operated by religious institutions. These establishments sought to integrate Indigenous children into Euro-Canadian culture, frequently resorting to severe and brutal methods. The children endured physical, emotional, and sexual maltreatment, and were denied access to their language, culture, and sense of self. The enduring impact of this system has caused intergenerational trauma among Indigenous communities.

In response to the pressing need to confront these inequities, the IRSSA was ratified in 2006. The agreement, which is the largest settlement for a class-action lawsuit in Canadian history, encompasses provisions for monetary restitution to survivors, allocation of funds for projects to commemorate the events, and the creation of the TRC. The primary objective of the TRC was to ascertain the veracity of the residential school system and facilitate the process of reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians.


The mission of the TRC was aiming to:


Gather and record the factual information: Collect and document the accounts of survivors, former personnel, and other individuals affected by the residential school system. This process entailed conducting long hearings and collecting personal statements, resulting in the creation of a complete historical record.

Disseminate knowledge to the general population: Promote knowledge and understanding of the historical and lasting impact of residential schools throughout the entire Canadian population, in order to cultivate a more comprehensive awareness of the systematic injustices experienced by Indigenous communities.


Facilitate Reconciliation: Formulate suggestions to direct a reconciliation process, which aims to resolve both past and present injustices and cultivate harmonious and mutually respectful relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities.


From 2008 to 2015, the TRC held hearings around Canada, providing an opportunity for numerous survivors to recount their experiences. The hearings were conducted in a public manner and frequently evoked strong emotions, allowing previously marginalized voices to express themselves. The commission additionally gathered a multitude of documents and artifacts, establishing a permanent historical archive.


The TRC’s final report, published in 2015, provided a thorough and honest examination of the residential school system and its consequences. The study encompassed 94 Calls to Action, which targeted many sectors like child welfare, education, language and culture, health, and justice. These proposals were intended to address the long-lasting effects of residential schools and promote the progress of Canadian reconciliation.


The work of the TRC has had a significant and enduring influence on Canadian society. The findings have resulted in heightened knowledge and comprehension of Indigenous challenges, both in historical and current situations. The Calls to Action have had a significant impact on legislative reforms and have served as a catalyst for several reconciliation activities throughout the country.

Nevertheless, the journey towards reconciliation is still under progress. Successfully implementing the TRC’s recommendations necessitates unwavering dedication and commitment from government entities, institutions, and individuals at all levels. Reconciliation is not only a final outcome, but an ongoing process that requires authentic collaboration and reciprocal esteem.

The formation of the TRC constituted a momentous stride towards reconciliation and redress for Indigenous peoples in Canada. It has established the groundwork for a future that is more inclusive and fair, where the historical realities are recognized and the rights and respect of Indigenous peoples are maintained. The TRC’s legacy serves as a reminder that reconciliation is a shared duty and that constructing a fair society necessitates facing and gaining knowledge from our past.

Volunteers needed at the Indigenous Health Centre of Tiotià:ke!

You can find the sign-up form here.


The start of National Indigenous History Month is filled with heavy and significant events in Canadian/Turtle Island inhabitants history: on June 1st, 2008, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada was established; on June 3, 2019, the Final Report of the National inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls was released; on June 10, 1857, the Gradual Civilization Act was instituted and on June 11, 2008, Prime Minister Stephen Harper gave a formal apology to former Residential Schools students.


Save the date

There are a few UN World Days coming ahead in the first half of June: June 1st is Global Day of Parents,  June 4, International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression, June 7, World Food Safety Day, and June 8, World Oceans Day.

Food for thought

If you are on unceded lands, what are the laws and practices that exist there that you can be part of revitalizing?

Resource: Home on Native Land, a ten-week course from Raven

A reminder

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Resources for dedication of Mohawk Bible Many Mohawk Bibles have already been delivered to individuals and communities of faith, with more on their way. The Living into Right Relations Leadership Circle has developed some ideas to help communities of faith dedicate their copies of the Mohawk Bible with respect and gratitude, including liturgical resources, video clips of Harvey Satewas Gabriel reading from the Mohawk Bible and other resources about the significance of this translation.

Download resources: Ohiatonhseratokénti, The Holy Bible in Mohawk (DOC) or (PDF)