Mr. Speaker, the Metis people of Canada, the Metis Nation of Saskatchewan and in particular the Metis of Batoche suffered a great injustice in 1885 when the bell of Batoche was wrongfully removed from a Metis church, St. Antoine de Padoue, as a trophy of war. The bell is a symbol of Metis heritage and represents an important period in Metis history.
Since its removal from the church in 1885, the bell has been located first at the firehall in Millbrook and then moved to Millbrook Legion Hall in Millbrook, Ontario. However, the bell of Batoche disappeared from the legion hall about four and a half years ago and the current whereabouts of the bell are unknown. As a result, all Canadians are deprived of viewing this important Canadian cultural artefact which is a symbol of pride and hope of the Metis nation.
The resolution of this matter will take goodwill and a willingness to work together on the part of the Metis people and the Millbrook legion in order to ensure the bell's safe return to a location where once again all Canadians will be able to see an important part of Canada's cultural heritage.