National Chief Witnesses Pope’s Funeral

Friday, April 08, 2005 at 15:41



Assembly of First Nations chief Phil Fontaine was part of the prime minister’s official delegation that attended the Pope’s funeral in Rome earlier today.


Fontaine says Pope John Paul showed a particular interest in Canada’s First Peoples through his life and work.


Fontaine notes that the Pope visited First Nations communities and met with First Nations leaders and citizens during his visits to Canada.


Fontaine says, in 1984, the Pope also spoke in support of First Nations’ right to self-determination.


The national chief met with the Pope in 1999, and says the fact John Paul was willing to meet with him demonstrated the Pope’s desire to understand the concerns and perspectives of Aboriginal people.