CP NewsAlert: Pope Francis leaves Quebec City's historic Citadelle

·5 min read

Pope Francis is on a six-day tour of Canada aimed at reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples for the Roman Catholic Church's role in residential schools.

Here are the latest developments on his stops today (all times are ET):

7:15 p.m.

Pope Francis has arrived at the Plains of Abraham and is touring the site in the popemobile.

He is being greeted by cheering and waving crowds of people.



7:06 p.m.

Pope Francis has left the Citadelle of Québec following meetings with the prime minister and Governor General and a speech.

Francis boarded the popemobile and he is scheduled to next greet crowds on the nearby Plains of Abraham.

6:40 p.m.

Pope Francis has again begged for forgiveness for the church’s role in the policies of assimilation carried out in Indigenous residential schools.

Speaking at Quebec City’s historic Citadelle, Francis expressed shame and sorrow for the role Catholic institutions played in a “deplorable” system that tried to strip Indigenous Peoples of their language, culture and world view.

6:30 p.m.

Gov. Gen. Mary Simon told Pope Francis his visit to Canada is a signal to the world that the Roman Catholic Church is joining Canadians on their path of reconciliation.

She says Canadians are looking forward to hearing more about the church's future actions "to continue this essential work."

Reconciliation, she says, is a grace that must be earned through hard work and understanding.

6:15 p.m.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told Pope Francis that his apology Monday for abuses at residential schools has had "an enormous impact."

Speaking at the Citadelle of Québec, Trudeau said residential schools caused cultural destruction, loss of life and continuing trauma for Indigenous Peoples across the country.

He said the Pope's recognition of the abuses and request for pardon is a starting point for reconciliation.

5 p.m.

Pope Francis and Gov. Gen. Mary Simon had a brief chat on multilingualism and the languages they each speak as they met at the Citadelle of Québec.

Sitting side by side before the cameras, Simon told the Pope in English that she is learning French but speaks her own Indigenous language.

4:50 p.m.

Pope Francis has arrived at the Citadelle of Québec, where he was greeted by Gov. Gen. Mary Simon and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Francis is scheduled to hold separate meetings there with Simon and Trudeau.

He is then set to make a public address with Simon.

The event was postponed by about an hour due to delays involving a flight carrying Indigenous staff and organizers.

4:20 p.m.

Pope Francis has made a stop at a monastery where he will be staying while in Quebec City.

The stop was added because a plane carrying Indigenous dignitaries who are invited to his event at the Citadelle of Québec was delayed.

Francis is heading to the Citadelle shortly and, later, to the Plains of Abraham.

3:30 p.m.

A group of Indigenous marchers who travelled 275 kilometres on foot from north of Quebec City arrived at the Plains of Abraham today and were welcomed with cheers.

The march was organized by Puamun Meshkenu, which is Innu for Path of a Thousand Dreams, and it started last week at the former Pointe-Bleue residential school in the Innu community of Mashteuiatsh, just north of Roberval, Que., in the Saguenay region.

That institution was the last of the federally funded, church-run schools to close in Quebec, in 1991.

Organizers have called the march an event to unite Indigenous nations and residential school survivors.

3:10 p.m.

Pope Francis met with a group of officials and guests who came to greet him at the airport in Quebec City, shaking hands and exchanging words with several people.

The Pope, in a wheelchair, handed each person a small red box. At previous events, such boxes contained a commemorative coin, though some clergy members received rosaries.

The pontiff then got into a white Fiat.

A crowd gathered along the route from the airport, with many taking photos and video.

2:50 p.m.

The plane carrying Pope Francis has arrived in Quebec City after leaving Edmonton this morning.

Officials and dignitaries, including Quebec Premier François Legault, have come to the airport to greet the Pope.

Francis is set to make his way to the Citadelle of Québec later this afternoon, then to tour the Plains of Abraham.

The afternoon's events have been delayed slightly due to flight issues.

2:10 p.m.

A crowd is gathering on the Plains of Abraham, in Quebec City, where Pope Francis is expected to visit for a tour this afternoon.

Fabien Jaubert, from the Innu community of Uashat-Maliotenam, says he wants to hear the pontiff apologize on behalf of the church "instead of just certain actors."

Jaubert says he came to honour the memories of the survivors of residential schools.

Today's papal events in Quebec City have been pushed back slightly due to a flight delay.

11:15 a.m.

An event at the Citadelle of Québec with Pope Francis is being pushed back an hour due to a delay involving a flight carrying Indigenous leaders.

Organizers say it will now start at 4:40 p.m.

The Pope’s tour of the Plains of Abraham is now set to begin around 6:15 p.m.

11:10 a.m.

A plane carrying Pope Francis has left Edmonton and is headed to Quebec City for the next portion of his reconciliation visit.

The Pope is to have separate meetings with Gov. Gen. Mary Simon and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the Citadelle of Québec, then give a public address with Simon.

Afterwards, he's expected to go to the Plains of Abraham in Quebec's capital.

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This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 27, 2022.

The Canadian Press

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