A great turnout for the lowering of our flags to half-mast in recognition of National Truth and Reconciliation Day, Saturday September 30th. Elder Trish Monague, heritage and culture coordinator from Beausoleil First Nation (BFN), opened the ceremony with a ceremonial smudging, a prayer and shared truths about the impacts of the residential school system on our indigenous communities along with teachings that help with healing as we move towards reconciliation.
We lowered the “Every Child Matters” flag along with our Canadian and Provincial flags to half-mast as we reflect on the harm done to our indigenous brothers and sisters in the not-so-distant past, listened to the truths shared by those in attendance and continue to look for ways to embrace equality, equity and inclusivity as we share the gifts of living together as one nation with diverse cultural backgrounds, traditions, languages and customs. After the hurt, comes healing and Truth and Reconciliation is the path to healing and ensuring that through education and remembrance, that we never forget what was done and ensure that it never happens again.
I’d like to thank the staff, members of the public, Beausoleil First Nation, Georgian Bay Native Womens Association, our Georgian Bay Native Friendship Centre and representatives from our Georgian Bay Metis Council and senate who attended with us in fellowship, to hear the teachings, prayers and songs, learn about the multi-generational trauma resulting from residential schools, and solemnly work towards reconciliation.