Oblates to open Rome archives for search of residential school records

The Catholic religious order that operated some residential schools in Canada says it will open its archives in Rome to researchers.

The Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate have agreed to grant the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation full access to their records in the Italian city.

The centre’s head archivist is expected to have an initial visit to the archives this spring.

The records may include letters from missionaries to leaders in France and Rome.

The Oblates say it’s an important commitment ahead of the Indigenous delegation to Rome to meet Pope Francis at the end of the month.

In a joint news release, the centre and the Oblates say a truthful account of residential school history is an essential foundation for healing of survivors, their families and communities.

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