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B.C. Métis leader brings gifts and a message to meeting with the Pope


Pixie Wells was honoured to be chosen as part of a Métis delegation that met Pope Francis at the Vatican on Monday.

“He was very inviting, very engaging. And our delegation was very happy to be there,” said Wells from her hotel room in Rome.

The acting president of B.C.'s Fraser Valley Métis Association gave the pontiff a book on women of the Métis Nation, and an orange facemask being worn by the entire Metis delegation that says “Every Child Matters.” It was made by a woman who works for the Abbotsford school district.

“I was not expecting her to make one for the Pope, however she made one for the Pope,” said Wells. “When I gave him the gift of the mask, I said please do not forget our children.”

At the Papal meeting, Wells was proud to represent two-spirited people, who often feel rejected by the religious community.

“No matter what the Catholic Church says, no matter what any church says, we belong,” said Wells. “And what I could say to those young two-spirited people: If I can stand in front of the Pope, so can you.”

Wells is hopeful the meeting is a first step toward the church accepting responsibility for the atrocities committed at residential schools.

“You can’t make a step together unless you’re willing to walk together. So we’re willing to walk together, however the truth must come first. Reconciliation must come,” said Wells, who believes that starts with Pope Francis coming to Canada and apologizing to survivors on their land.

Wells is remaining in Rome for the larger delegation of Indigenous representatives meeting with the Pope on Thursday.

“Our stories might be a little bit different, but our message is the same. Our culture was stolen, there’s no doubt about that,” said Wells. “So out of this week, I hope to gain those connections of how do we help re-build.” Top Stories

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