A civil ceremony in Montreal to take the oath to the nation of Quebec

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A civil ceremony in Montreal to take the oath to the nation of Quebec

Quebec solidaire and Parti Québécois MPs refused to pledge allegiance to King Charles III in October.

In solidarity with the PQ and solidarity elected officials who refused to take the oath to King Charles III in October, the collective “My Oath” and the Saint-Jean-Baptiste Society of Montreal (SSJB) held their own swearing-in ceremony on Saturday. swearing-in ceremony at Saint-Jean-Baptiste Church in Montreal.

This free, civic and republican ceremony allowed the public to abjure the British monarchy and swear allegiance to the people of Quebec.

This is a question that should have been at the heart of our political news for a long time. We try to make the point of view of civil society heard, which has a very important role, underlined the actor Sébastien Ricard, spokesperson for the collective “My oath”.

People would take a two-act oath and then sign a log, kept for the purpose of archiving the event.

“Validity is most definitely symbolic, but for us, symbolism really matters. […] By pronouncing these words, people realize the gravity and the solemnity of the moment and of the remarks, and I believe that it has an impact for them above all. »

— Sébastien Ricard, actor and spokesperson for the collective “My Oath”

Since 1867, Quebec elected officials must swear allegiance to the people of Quebec and to the British crown in order to be able to sit in Parliament.

Under the Act respecting the National Assembly, elected officials must take this oath to the people of Quebec. They must also swear allegiance to the British King under the Canadian Constitution Act.

Marie-Anne Alepin, president of the Montreal SSJB, believes that this civic ceremony is part of a larger action aimed at liberating this archaic institution.

“It is contradictory for the elect to take an oath to king and people. The state is secular and the king emanates from divine right: that no longer has its raison d'être. All parties agree on this.

— Marie-Anne Alepin, President of the Saint-Jean-Baptiste Society of Montreal

Ms. Alepin believes that this initiative shows the desire of the people of Quebec to reclaim their history while not forgetting the events of the past.

There is a whole violence that is behind this crown, which recalls many horrors. […] Colonialism, the First Nations, the Patriots exiled from Quebec and imprisoned in Australia… We want to detach ourselves from this oath and go further by detaching ourselves completely from the monarchy, she explained, adding that this debate is not a partisan issue.

During the appearance of La Presse canadienne at the Saint-Jean-Baptiste church on Saturday afternoon, the ceremony did not draw the crowds.

For Pierre Houle, retired, participation in this citizen swearing-in is a question of historical values.

It is against our history to take an oath to the king. This kind of initiative is to assert our identity as a country in another country, he said after his recantation, recalling the treatment imposed by the British monarchy on the Patriots in the 1830s .

A demonstration will take place in Quebec on November 29 – a day that marks the start of parliamentary work in the National Assembly –, organized in particular by the SSJB, by the Mouvement French Quebec and by the Coalition for the Abolition of the Monarchy in Quebec.

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