Magazine article Anglican Journal

Ceremony Reunites Native Pupils: School Not Named in Any Residential Abuse Lawsuits

Magazine article Anglican Journal

Ceremony Reunites Native Pupils: School Not Named in Any Residential Abuse Lawsuits

Article excerpt

The main dormitory building at the former Anglican Indian residential school in La Tuque, Que., which had fallen into disrepair, was demolished in early February. A number of former students from northern Quebec Cree communities gathered for the demolition.

Mary Coon, a former student and counselor at La Tuque, participated in ceremonies commemorating former pupils. The school's former classroom building is now in use as a daycare facility and the daycare director, Christiane Morin, organized the commemoration and reunion.

Ms. Coon told the CBC that the event allowed native people to "think about how we've come a long way. If we look at ourselves, where we are today, we're a stronger people. A lot of people have gone through healing. We know how to write; we know how to speak English. Some of us know how to speak French. For those of us who went to residential school, it wasn't all bad all the time."

Ms. Morin also circulated a petition asking that the Anglican chapel on the site--which is near the former residence building--be preserved.

La Tuque opened in 1963 and was closed in 1978. Canon Jean-Maurice Bonnard, who is now 77, was principal and administrator at the school from 1968 to 1978. …

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