Mr. Speaker, His Holiness Pope Benedict has bestowed papal honours upon two prominent Canadian pioneers of interfaith dialogue, who will be honoured by the Canadian Centre for Ecumenism this Thursday evening.
The Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice cross, also known as the Cross of Honour, will be awarded to Father Irénée Beaubien for his exceptional contributions to the church and to the papacy.
Dr. Victor Goldbloom will be bestowed with the Papal Honour of the Pontifical Equestrian Order of Saint Sylvester Pope and Martyr, one of only five orders of knighthood awarded directly by the Pope.
This order recognizes his outstanding devotion and his leadership in promoting Jewish-Christian dialogue and understanding.
Dr. Goldbloom is now part of a small but distinguished group of Canadians to receive such a papal honour.
I know that colleagues would want to join me in congratulating these two outstanding individuals on their most deserving awards, reflecting their exceptional contributions to faith and society, as we salute the Canadian Centre for Ecumenism for its continued excellence in expanding dialogue and understanding.