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A Mississauga, Ont. pastor has issued a public apology for comments he made about the “good that was done” in residential schools operated by the Catholic Church. Pastor Owen Keenan of Merciful Redeemer Parish made the controversial remarks during a sermon as he referenced the discovery of unmarked graves at the site of a former residential school in British Columbia, where the remains of more than 200 children were found. “Two thirds of the country is blaming the church, which we love, for the tragedies that occurred there,” Keenan said in a clip of the sermon posted to Reddit. “Now I presume that the same number would thank the church for the good that was done in those schools but of course that question was never asked and in fact we are not allowed to even say that good was done in those schools.” Keenan has faced significant criticism on social media for his remarks, which come amid a national reckoning regarding Canada’s residential schools system. In a statement sent to CP24, Keenan acknowledged “the pain and anger which has been magnified” as a result of the portion of his remarks that have circulated on social media and pledged “to do better.”

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