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Archbishop Hayes fondly remembered

The Editor: It was sad to see in your Aug. 24, 2016, issue that the former Archbishop of Halifax, James Hayes, passed away.

On one occasion, Rev. Leonard Sullivan, then stationed in Ottawa, took Archbishop Hayes to the Parliamentary Restaurant in Ottawa to have lunch with then MP Les Benjamin. Archbishop Hayes was dressed in “civvies.” Father Leonard introduced the archbishop to Les by saying, “I’d like you to meet a friend of mine, Jim Hayes,” to which Les replied by saying, “Nice to meet you, Jim.”

As they were eating lunch, a Conservative MP from Halifax went by and made a special point of speaking to the archbishop. Next, Robert Stanfield from Halifax and then leader of the Conservative party, wheeled around when he saw him and spoke to the archbishop. By this time, Les Benjamin was wondering to himself, “Hey, who is this guy?” Finally he found out, to his astonishment, that he was the Archbishop of Halifax.

This little anecdote is simply another example of the respect in which Archbishop Hayes was held. — John S. Burton, Regina


Farmers had good relations with Aboriginal neighbours

The Editor: It is an exceedingly sad and troubling incident which involved the shooting of a young Aboriginal man on a farm property owned by Gerald Stanley near Biggar, Sask.

The details of why the car in which Colten Boushie was a passenger and had driven onto Stanley’s property has not been clearly established at this time. But, it is alleged that Stanley fired a shot into the vehicle, killing Boushie. Stanley pleaded not guilty, was charged by the RCMP for second degree murder, and released on bail.

It was really a disappointing experience to read some of the online racist remarks against Aboriginal people living in this province. The worst one suggested that Stanley should not have left witnesses!

It was a surprise to learn that we have people in this province who are that racist.

In Canada, and in this province, we have families that have come from different cultures, languages, religions, etc. Racism is not acceptable. It does not contribute to a peaceful neighbourhood.

Aboriginal people lived in this province hundreds of years before we (the whites) settled on their land, and pushed our Aboriginal neighbours onto reserves.

In the early 1950s some of us farmers from the Cudworth area visited elders in the One Arrow Reserve to negotiate an agreement to produce grain crops on their land. We met with two elders that had wonderfully descriptive names: Almightyvoice and Paintednose. We were young and anxious to be courteous. In speaking to Almightyvoice, one of us inadvertently addressed him as Mr. Almightynose. For a moment there was a stunned silence. Then our Aboriginal friends burst out in laughter and we then joined them. They had a good sense of humour.

We farmed the land that we had leased on the reserve for two or three years. But left it, since it was too much of a hassle to move machinery a distance of about 30 miles. During that time, we had Aboriginal and Métis working with us there and helping us on our own farms. They were good people and hard workers. — Leo Kurtenbach, Saskatoon