Bless the children

Last June 21, National Aboriginal Day was celebrated. The aboriginals were the people or natives who were in Canada, long before the Europeans, British, Germans, French, etc. came to populate our area. More Canadians should know this history. These Canadians who migrated here, isolated natives and established so-called residential schools to separate native children from their families. The purpose of these residential schools was to assimilate the natives “to Christianize us” to kill the Indian in the child. That was the purpose of removing children from parents, families, communities, cultures, and languages.”
Ceres Alabado On June 11 of this year, Canada thru Prime Minister Stephen Harper and other leaders of parties, apologized and asked for forgiveness from the aboriginal peoples “for failing them so profoundly.”

The NDP and Liberal Party also made an apology, followed by the Chief of the Quebecois Party, saying they should start the process at reconciliation.
The First Nations survivors and representatives, responded and some described how they were sexually abused, how they have put the pain behind and that “they are and always have been an indispensable part of the Canadian history.”


Among these survivors are:
Phil Fontaine, Aboriginal Leader, First Nations
Andrea Curly
Charlie Thompson
Rev. Mark MacDonald – from the Anglican Church, National Indigenous Bishop
In Vancouver – 6 generations in this residential school:
Darlene Blair – Mamalikuna, First Nations
Angela Busch, in Winnipeg
Desiree Smith
Garry Fisher
Clement Nertier
Beverly Jenkins, Native Women’s Association
Mary Inuit
To follow thru with the apology: the schools were checked to have clear water and other repairs in the building, etc.
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This reminds me of the history of our home country , the Philippines.
When the Spanish conquistadores (conquerors) came or invaded and stepped ashore in the islands down south, they killed the natives there. The Spanish had of course weapons, like swords and canons in their ships, while the natives had only their bows and arrows and bolos. Many natives were killed while some fled to the mountains and hills. I wrote about this in a children’s book, entitled, The Battle of Mactan. ( Mactan is in Cebu, in the Visayas islands, south of Manila).

So the Spaniards ruled the Philippines for three centuries, named it the Philippine Islands, after the Spanish King Philipp. Now if you know Philippine History, the Philippine Revolution of 1896, freed the country from the Spanish rule. I wrote about this also in my book Kangkong 1896 for it was in the town of Kangkong (near Caloocan) where Andres Bonifacio, the heroic leader of the Revolution started with a handful of revolucionarios following him.
Yes, the Philippines has a colorful and sometimes tragic history, but the people triumphed and won their freedom with the cost of their blood. As I related in my book, the young, some teenagers participated in fighting for the country’s and people’s freedom.
But later the Americans , the great U.S.A. came. And that’s another story! Just like the Canadians here, who at first did not allow the children to use their First Nations language, the Americans did not want the Filipinos to use their native language, and they established public schools, teaching and using only the English language. It was much later that Tagalog (the native dialect) was widely used in the public schools.
Oh well, it is to the advantage of the Filipino kids, you and I, that we speak and write in English easily to migrate here and in the U.S., when they wanted to, di ba?
God always lets us do our thing, di ba, when it is for our benefit and is good.

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Have you been following the news about the disasters all over the world? I mentioned in one of my columns about the devastating cyclone in Myanmar (formerly known as Burma) killing over 100,000 people as of recent count. The earthquakes in China, flood in the mid-east, Mississippi, tornado in the U.S. and in the Philippines, a terrible typhoon which caused a passenger ship to capsize in the middle of the sea near the Sibuyan Islands, The waves in the sea were as big as the houses, they reported. So far as of June 24, only about 50 survivors have been found; 20 out of 864 passengers are reported dead. The name of the ship is Princess of Stars owned by Sulpicio Lines. The Sulpicio Lines is reported to have been involved in 3 other major disasters in the past 21 years. In 1987, the Dona Paz ferry collided with an oil tanker killing more than 4,000 people in the worst peace time sea tragedy.

The US is sending a military ship with helicopters to help in the rescue efforts. Let us pray for the well being of those that survived. And for those found dead, may they rest in the peace of the Lord.
The wildfires in California are another disaster worth mentioning. In CNN, a Tad Agoglia, was featured. He sent a crew to the raging fires to help people whose homes or properties have been destroyed.
A little bit of history. In 1858, James Douglas proclaimed British Columbia. The people of British Columbia are happy to live in “the best place on earth!
Quebec City is celebrating on July 3, its 400 years since it was established by the French who came from Europe. Confederation followed shortly and now Canada includes 10 provinces and 3 territories. July 1 is Canada Day.
Happy Canada Day! What are you doing to celebrate this special day?
Be a hero in Canada by doing well in whatever is your dream and goal in life!