More than 500 people attended the first annual National Aboriginal Prayer Breakfast June 21 in Ottawa. The event grew out of a desire to recognize the many positive developments between Canadian aboriginal peoples and the Government of Canada. The breakfast was co-hosted by Honorary Chief Kenny Blacksmith, director of Gathering Nations International, and Conservative MP James Lunney and Conservative Senator Don Meredith.
Former Aboriginal Affairs Minister Chuck Strahl spoke at the breakfast, recalling the National Forgiven Summit of 2010 when a Charter of Forgiveness and Freedom was presented to Strahl on behalf of the aboriginal peoples present. That offer of forgiveness on the part of those leaders “who were ready to offer forgiveness” was also powerful, he said. Strahl and Blacksmith explored the powerful, albeit too little explored, role that forgiveness can play in healing from political conflicts.
This event was covered by the Catholic Register in a 21 June article “First annual National Aboriginal Prayer Breakfast recognized progress in relations.”