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The Pontiff Visit

Mr. Kakfwi was the lead in organizing visits to the NWT by Pope John Paul II in 1984 and 1987. The first visit, which was supported by all national Aboriginal organizations, was cancelled due to weather. Determined and undeterred, Mr. Kakfwi continued to push for Pope John Paul II to return and complete his visit.

He was successful with the Pope’s historic visit to Fort Simpson, NWT in 1987 where the Pontiff apologized for the Catholic Church’s role in the treatment of the Aboriginal peoples in Canada.

The visit demonstrated the strong spiritual foundation of the Dene, the attachment of the Dene to the Catholic Church, and the influential role which Pope John Paul II could play in raising the international profile of Aboriginal rights.

 

 


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