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Ontario Hansard - 26-March2008

Mr. Frank Klees: When Premier McGuinty announced that this Legislature should consider removing the Lord's Prayer from its daily proceedings, he struck at the very core of what millions of Ontarians of diverse backgrounds consider a significant part of their religious heritage. In response, this Legislature has received thousands of petitions from Ontarians of all faiths and cultures, calling on this Parliament to maintain the Lord's Prayer.

Joining us in the House today is Mr. Shadah Khokhar, who is of Pakistani background and who, along with many representatives of the Pakistani-Canadian community, has delivered more than 1,500 signatures in support of that petition. They are here today to call on the Premier to continue to honour their Legislature's parliamentary and religious traditions.

It is not mere coincidence that another petition has been tabled in this Legislature, numbering in the thousands of signatures, that also speaks to honouring our religious and cultural heritage. That petition calls on the Parliament to declare April 2 as Pope John Paul II Day in recognition of his lifelong commitment to international understanding, peace and the defence of equality and human rights.

I ask honourable members to consider the appeal of both petitions before us, as both honour our religious and cultural heritage.

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