Sacred Heart Church of the First Peoples re: Kamloops residential school tragedy

We have been working closely with Father Susai of Sacred Heart Church of the First Peoples, which is a National Catholic Parish for indigenous people. 

Sacred Heart parish elders hosted a pipe ceremony – a high honour among First Nations – at 3 p.m. on Thursday, June 3. The ceremony was by its sacred nature private, involving only the elders. No photos or videos were allowed.

Following that private ceremony with a more public outreach, a 4 to 6 p.m. vigil was held at the Sacred Heart church site on 96 Street in which 215 ribbons were tied in the area.

During the prayer service, there was be traditional smudging and also one man drumming.

A limited number of participants were able to be physically present to reflect silently or speak. In the interest of crowd control due to the COVID pandemic, others were asked to either drive past and respectfully reflect inside their vehicles, or to walk past with appropriate social distance spacing.

His Grace Archbishop Richard W. Smith will be celebrating Mass at Sacred Heart parish at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday June 6. Mass will be offered for the victims of the former Kamloops residential school and for all residential school survivors. Both that Mass, and Mass from the Basilica, will be livestreamed on YouTube and Facebook.