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Virtual Gathering: June 26th, 2021 Community Information Meeting

Updated: Jun 9, 2022

Video: Watch a Recording of the June 26th, 2021 Community Information Meeting. The recording ends at the transition to the question period.

As a signed agreement is underway between the NAJC and the ACC Primacy, ACC Diocese of Calgary and the ACC Diocese of New Westminster the Healing Fund for Japanese Canadians Committee host a virtual town hall to share our progress with the community. Attendance was high at 75 people (or screens!) from across Canada.

Peter Wallace hosted the meeting and began by inviting guest speaker Dr. Satsuki Ina to speak on clergy sexual abuse and intergenerational trauma. Dr. Ina Zoomed into the session from her home in California and has been a vocal supporter of these healing efforts for many years, drawing great parallels of these healing efforts to her work with San Francisco's Cameron House, where a community is reconciling with the crimes of a priest who preyed on young boys for three decades. Dr. Ina spoke about how community trauma requires community healing and it is important to have open discourse to acknowledge publicly the severity of the abuse. Trust is betrayed and suppression is very powerful on the child victim.

Dr. Satsuki Ina

Dr. Satsuki Ina

"Clergy child sexual abuse trauma is particularly egregious because the clergyman has inordinate influence as a messenger of God, as an extension of someone's spiritual and religious beliefs and is granted inordinate power and expectation of parishioners and members of the church to submit to demands by such a powerful force." -Dr. Ina

Judy Hanazawa spoke next with a history of the group's work from 2006 to the National Outreach Meetings in 2017-2018, which is the last time many community members would have heard from us. A series of eight outreach and educational workshops were held by Judy and Wendy Matsubuchi-Bremner in cities with large populations of Japanese Canadians and survivors of G.G. Nakayama's clergy sexual abuse. Wendy completed the timeline up to the present day and then she took a closer look at the initiatives within the Healing Fund for Japanese Canadians.

The Main Components of the Healing Fund for Japanese Canadians

Image: The Main Components of the Healing Fund for Japanese Canadians.

The next steps were presented by Les Kojima and show that there is more work to be done with the ACC, including signing the agreement. We are working under the legal entity of the NAJC while the ACC is composed of three separate legal entities: the Primacy, the Diocese of Calgary and the Diocese of New Westminster. The text of the agreement has been confirmed by all four legal entities and signatures are imminent. Along with the agreement a Facilitator/Project Manager will have to be hired (paid for by the ACC), a work plan needs to be established, and a steering committee will be formed to oversee the project.

Many great questions were asked during the question period at the end of the meeting! To protect the anonymity of participants the question period was not recorded, however, head over to the Frequently Asked Questions section of the website to learn more about the Healing Fund!

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