Pope to visit Iqaluit July 29, Vatican confirms

Pope Francis to visit with residential school survivors, elders and youth

Pope Francis will visit with residential school survivors, elders and youth in Iqaluit on July 29, the Vatican confirmed Thursday. (Screenshot courtesy of Salt and Light Media)

By Nunatsiaq News

Pope Francis will stop in Iqaluit on July 29 during his six-day visit to Canada, the Vatican has confirmed.

According to a schedule released by the Vatican Thursday, the Pope will arrive in Iqaluit around 3:50 p.m. after stopping first in Quebec City.

At 4:15 p.m., he will meet with former residential school students at Nakasuk Elementary School.

Following that, he will meet with elders and young people at the school’s outdoor square at 5 p.m.

A departure ceremony at Iqaluit’s airport is scheduled for 6:15 p.m., with the Pope departing at 6:45 p.m. for Rome.

Pope Francis is scheduled to start his Canadian trip in Edmonton on July 24 and spend the next three days with Indigenous groups there — including a public mass at Commonwealth Stadium on July 26 — before flying to Quebec City.

While in Quebec City, Pope Francis will receive an official welcome from Gov. Gen. Mary Simon and will meet with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, according to the Vatican.

When Pope Francis met with delegates of Inuit, Metis and First Nations at the Vatican in late March, he said then that he hoped to be able to visit Canada.

Toward the end of that visit, on April 1, the Pope apologized for the role some Roman Catholic clergy played in abuses that occurred in the residential school system. It’s expected he will apologize again during this visit.

In a news release Thursday, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. said it is working with Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami and other organizations to bring Inuit to Iqaluit for the visit.

Nunavut Inuit interested in attending or participating in events related to the Pope’s visit are asked to register with NTI through the organization’s website, the release said.

NTI and other groups are working to plan travel, opportunities for Inuit to speak with the Pope and Inuit cultural and spiritual ceremony during the visit.

This will be the fourth papal visit to Canada. The three previous ones were all made by pope Saint John Paul II.

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(9) Comments:

  1. Posted by Tom on

    I fully expect Iqaluit’s raging anti-Catholic Mayor to be in hiding for this historic event.

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  2. Posted by Less than 3 hours? on

    So out of a five-day trip to Canada, the Pope will be in Iqaluit/Nunavut/Inuit Nunangat for less than three hours? With the only public event being a short departure ceremony at the Iqaluit Airport?
    Seems like the Catholic Church is still astoundingly tone-deaf when it comes to apologizing and reconciling for their crimes.

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      • Posted by Truth on

        The previous generation along with this generation would be much much more improved (plus more) if people invested in housing instead of church.

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        • Posted by False on

          Let’s go back five generations and say they shouldn’t have invested as you say. The civilized world wouldn’t even exist for you to post nonsense on a website.

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  3. Posted by lena on

    I think he should be going to, where all the buried students were found, not to Iqaluit

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    • Posted by Check 1,2,3 on

      Tell us Lena, where were in Nunavut were they found? No where?

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      • Posted by A better place than Iqaluit… on

        He should be going to the place where the Residential School was and that was in Chesterfield Inlet. Now maybe his health may not allow him to do that and maybe it’ll be best that he go to a bigger place that will be able to accommodate his health, but he should still be going to the place in Nunavut where the Residential School made the most impact and that is the Kivalliq Region. So he should be going to Rankin Inlet where there is a Health Centre that will be able to accommodate his health, where he will be able to properly make the Catholic Church’s apologizes known to Inuit who were affected by Residential Schools and where he can meet those people who need to meet him.

        Iqaluit is not the right place because it is an Anglican town and the Inuit population mainly follows an Anglican Religion, as does most of the Baffin Region. As a Catholic Inuk myself who is Kivalliqmuit, who did live in Iqaluit and did attend Catholic Mass regularly I can tell you that Catholic Mass in Iqaluit is actually not attended mostly by Inuit but more by those people who come from Africa or other parts of the world. Unlike Masses in the Kivalliq and in Rankin where those Masses are attended and are filled with Inuit, including Daily Mass.

        As I said earlier, it would be best if the Holy Father made his trip to the Kivalliq Region.

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