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Photos for September 2015

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St. Mary’s Catholic Church in  the village of Wilno, Ontario, 180 km west of Ottawa, is among those offering sympathy to family and friends of three women murdered within hours of one another at different locations in the area Sept. 22. “The murders of three women in our community this week affected everyone, our whole community is feeling real pain,” the parish stated on its web site. “May they rest in peace.” Basil Borutski, 57, was arrested and charged with killing Carol Culleton, 66, Anastasia Kuzyk, 36, and Nathalie Warmerdam, 48. The women were former partners of Borutski, who had a lengthy criminal history, including charges involving two of the three women. He had been released from jail three weeks before the killings.

chretien5Former Liberal prime minister Jean Chretien says it makes no difference if he’s comfortable with Muslim women covering their faces. “It’s a question of rights and it will be for the court to decide,” he said during a barbecue event Sept. 27 in support of Ottawa Centre Liberal candidate Catherine McKenna. Chretien was justice minister when the Charter of Rights and Freedoms was adopted in 1982. The Conservative government of Stephen Harper has called on the Supreme Court to hear an appeal of a lower court ruling that overturned a ministerial directive prohibiting a Muslim woman wearing a niqab from taking the oath of citizenship. Both Liberal leader Justin Trudeau and NDP leader Tom Mulcair argue it’s a matter of religious freedom.

atwoodProminent author Margaret Atwood and over 200 Canadian writers, musicians and filmmakers say Bill C-51 “allows the government to silence dissenting voices without oversight or accountability.” In an open letter published Sept. 29 by Maclean’s, the group said in the federal election “we will be voting to protect our artistry, our rights, and our freedoms: we will be voting for the repeal of C-51.” Among the provisions of the bill, which received royal assent in June, is the power for police to arrest citizens without a warrant if they believe individuals may carry out acts of terror. The artists’ letter says the petition at KillC51.ca calling for repeal of the bill has now been signed by over 298,500 people, making it one of the largest campaigns in Canadian history.”

IMG_0978The ‘Supermoon’ rises above the Ottawa horizon Sept 27 before moving on to a rare super ‘blood moon’ eclipse. A Supermoon is a full moon at its closest point to Earth.

IMG_1012The ‘Supermoon’ rises above the Ottawa horizon Sept 27 before moving on to a rare super ‘blood moon’ eclipse. A Supermoon is a full moon at its closest point to Earth.

doreyDwight Dorey, a Mi’kmaq from Nova Scotia, was elected as National Chief of the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples (CAP) at its Annual General Assembly in Gatineau, Quebec, Sept. 25. He succeeds former National Chief Betty Ann Lavallée, who resigned one year early to spend more time with ailing family members. Dorey served as National Chief of CAP for three consecutive terms from 2000 to 2006.

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It was a ‘triple-header’ ceremony at Christ Church Cathedral (Anglican) in Ottawa Sept. 21 as Bishop John Chapman, from left: received former Roman Catholic priest Joseph Varkey into the Anglican communion; ordained Elizabeth December-Lovell as a deacon; and ordained Inuk deacon Aigah Attagutsiak as a priest. The first reading was in Malayam (Varkey is from India), the gospel reading was delivered in Inuktitut by Dean Joseph Allooloo of St. Jude’s Cathedral in Iqaluit, and the sermon by Archdeacon Mary Ellen Berry was in English. Among the clergy on hand to celebrate the ordination of Attagutsiak, the first Inuk to be ordained to the priesthood in a southern diocese, were National Indigenous Bishop Mark MacDonald and the Rt. Rev’d. Darren McCartney, the suffragan bishop of the Diocese of the Arctic.

IMG_0851Rt. Rev’d. Darren McCartney, the suffragan bishop of the Diocese of the Arctic, congratulates the Rev. Aigah Attagutsiak following her ordination to the priesthood in Christ Church Cathedral (Anglican) in Ottawa. Attagutsiak, is the first Inuk to be ordained as an Anglican priest in a southern diocese. Waiting their turn to congratulate Attagutsiak are, from left, National Indigenous Bishop Mark MacDonald, Dean Joseph Allooloo of St. Jude’s Cathedral in Iqaluit, and the Very Rev’d Roger Briggs who, along with Attagutsiak, serve both Inuktitut and English congregations at St. Margaret’s Anglican Church in Ottawa.

IMG_7894A Hawker Hurricane and a Supermarine Spitfire were among the vintage Second World War aircraft on display on Parliament Hill during the commemoration ceremony Sept. 20 marking the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain. More than 100 Canadian pilots flew in the Battle of Britain between July and October 1940 and 23 lost their lives. As commander-in-chief of Canada, Gov. General David Johnston reminded the large crowd of the famous comment made by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill on the contribution of allied pilots in the Battle of Britain. “Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.” The ceremony included a parade in which Second World War veterans marched alongside members of the Royal Canadian Air Force and Air Cadets.

IMG_0700Governor General David Johnston and General Jonathan Vance, the chief of defence staff, salute Second World War veterans as they march past the reviewing area at the commemoration ceremony on Parliament Hill Sept. 20 marking the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Britain. More than 100 Canadian pilots flew in the Battle of Britain between July and October 1940 and 23 lost their lives.

prendergast2Ottawa faith leaders including Roman Catholic Archbishop Terrence Prendergast are calling for all people of good will to join in the humanitarian effort “to save the lives of the multitude of refugees who are in desperate straits.” In a letter published in the Ottawa Citizen Sept. 12, Prendergast, along with Imam Samy Metwally of the Ottawa Main Mosque and Rabbi Reuven Bulka, Rabbi Emeritus, Congregation Machzikei Hadas, noted that after the collapse of South Vietnam in 1975 Ottawa, then a city of 400,000, helped settle 4,000 refugees. “We recognize that there are complicated issues,” they wrote. “We are not here to criticize. We are here to jointly encourage.” When members of all sectors of the community work together, the community itself benefits, they wrote. “Today, as the community contemplates its action plan, the model of Project 4000 jumps to the fore as the template for today. And the cooperative spirit of years ago has once again become a vibrant presence.”

hillier3Canada’s former chief of the defence staff says the Canadian Forces could play a key in helping to bring in at least 50,000 Syrian refugees to Canada by Christmas. In an interview on CBC News Network’s Power & Politics Sept. 13, retired general Rick Hillier said, “We’ve got these incredible leaders in the Canadian Forces, across the RCMP and many other places in our nation who are ready to step up.” But, the country has to move fast, he said. “I’ve had the unfortunate experience of being in the middle of some of those crises where I served as a soldier,” he said. “You really don’t appreciate just how tragic an experience it is until you’re in the middle of it, until you witness it personally.” Hillier acknowledged there are security risks, but said they can be contained.

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Students of the Nunavut Sivuniksavut training program entertain during the 9th annual Inuit Celebration of Life on Parliament Hill Sept. 10. The event highlighted the need for action to address the high suicide rate among Inuit Youth. Suicide is responsible for 40 per cent of deaths of Inuit youth compared with eight per cent for the rest of Canada, according to Statistics Canada. Leaders of the National Inuit Youth Council and Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the national voice of Canada’s 60,000 Inuit, called attention to the crisis as part of World Suicide Prevention Day. The high suicide rate among Inuit youth is “a Canadian tragedy,” said Terry Audla, President of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami. “We cannot solve this crisis alone, so we are reaching out for support from all sectors: public, private, non-profit, academia and individuals, to help find ways to reduce these heartbreaking numbers.”

chretienIn an open letter published in several Canadian newspapers, former Liberal prime minister Jean Chrétien said that in fewer than 10 years the Harper government has “tarnished almost 60 years of Canada’s reputation as a builder of peace and progress.” Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s reaction to the refugee crises in Syria and Iraq has helped to cast Canada as a “cold-hearted” nation in the international community, and he has “shamed Canada,” wrote Chretien. He called on Canadians to “choose a government in line with our great tradition of peace-building” initiated by former Liberal Prime Minister Lester Pearson “and promoted by all of his successors until the arrival of the Harper administration.”

albion fallsThe three-day Labour Day weekend from Sept. 12-14 in Canada provided the last chance for many to get out to the cottage, beach, or camping before the beginning of school and the arrival of fall. Some also visited the several water falls in the Hamilton, Ont., area including Albion Falls, as seen in this long-exposure photograph.

IMG_9377The three-day Labour Day weekend from Sept. 12-14 in Canada provided the last chance for many to get out to the cottage, beach, or camping before the beginning of school and the arrival of fall. For others, it was an opportunity to put out the “gone fishing” sign.

west blockThe West Block on Parliament Hill is looking better these days as the complete renovation of the landmark building continues. Construction started in January 2011 and is expected to be completed in 2017. The approved budget for the project was $863 million.

IMG_9401Just a church by the side of the road