The Archdiocese of Edmonton has announced it has contributed $3.2 million as part of the national Indigenous Reconciliation Fund to support and advance healing and reconciliation initiatives with First Nations, Metis and Inuit Peoples.
The Catholic Bishops of Canada have committed, in their dioceses, to raising $30 million over five years to support local reconciliation initiatives in every region of Canada.
Funds raised in the Archdiocese of Edmonton will support programs and initiatives within the territory of the Archdiocese, focused on five pillars: healing and reconciliation for communities and families; youth leadership; culture and language revitalization; education and community building; and dialogues for promoting indigenous spirituality and culture.
An Indigenous Reconciliation Discernment Circle will identify projects within the area of the Archdiocese of Edmonton, review and approve applications and ensure transparency and good governance.
“History cannot be erased, but together we can look forward to – and help create – a better future,” said Cam Alexis, chair of the Indigenous Reconciliation Discernment Circle and a former chief of the Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation.
“I think the spirituality and culture is very important because that is part of the Church’s reconciliation as well. It is to recognize that as a holistic way of healing. Even the Pope visited us last summer, and all of this is the concept of healing and coming back to the Church as well for prayer.”
The Indigenous Reconciliation Discernment Circle is Indigenous-led, with representation from First Nations, Metis and Inuit partners. More information on the Indigenous Reconciliation Discernment Circle, guidelines, an application and full biographies of its members can be found on the Indigenous Reconciliation Fund page