Archbishop V. James Weisgerber honoured by group of First Nations elders

Thursday, April 19, 2012

2012_weisgerber_with_gift_blanketDuring a traditional Anishinaabe ceremony, the Most Reverend V. James Weisgerber, Archbishop of Winnipeg, was symbolically adopted by several First Nations elders. The ceremony, which made him a brother to the First Nations community, took place on 14 April 2012 in Winnipeg, in the presence of many First Nations dignitaries, including the Grand Chief of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, Mr. Derek Nepinak, and former Assembly of First Nations National Chief, Mr. Phil Fontaine.

In 2008, at the invitation of Archbishop Weisgerber, then President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB), Mr. Fontaine addressed the CCCB Plenary Assembly and invited the Church to enter into a new partnership with Indigenous Peoples. The following year, on 29 April 2009, Mr. Fontaine and Archbishop Weisgerber were part of a delegation of former Indian Residential School students and Church representatives who were received at the Vatican by Pope Benedict XVI. Other representatives from the Church in Canada who participated included the Most Reverend Gerard Pettipas, C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Grouard-McLennan and Chair of the Corporation of Catholic Entities Party to the Indian Residential Schools Settlement agreement, Father Tim Coonen, O.M.I, representative of congregations of men religious that are part of the agreement; and Sister Marie Zarowny, S.S.A., representative of congregations of women religious included in the agreement.

Phil Fontaine, Archbishop Weisgerber, Tobasonakwut Kinew