We start with the truth

Nancy Dyson and children from St. Michael's Residential School watching preparations for the potlatch, Alert Bay, B.C., 1970. Photo: Dan Rubenstein

Sometimes it is hard to hear the truth, but for us to ever consider reconciliation, it is where we have to start.

The Anglican Journal’s Matt Jordan interviewed a couple who came to work at the St. Michael’s Residential School in Alert Bay, B.C., in 1970.

A powerful quote from the interview speaks to us now, as much as it would have when the Truth & Reconciliation report came out in 2015: I think it’s going to be very hard for some of your older readers —they went through the days when every Sunday in the church, they would read the reports about the residential schools. Melanie Delva [reconciliation animator for the Anglican Church of Canada] showed me some of the reports that would be sent out to the parishioners describing the school, and it was a very happy picture.  In the photos, students were chopping wood and they were farming and from 6 a.m. they were busy. They had a farm at one time at St. Michael’s. That’s what [Anglicans] believed in and they gave money to it. They donated and they thought that they were doing God’s work. Dan Rubenstein

Here is a link to the full interview – some of it is hard to read, but must be heard.