A while ago, I had the opportunity to speak to a group of newly landed immigrants to Canada to talk about the importance of peace and the importance of freedom as they adapted to a new life in a new country.

I shared the story of how my father’s side of the family arrived in Canada from Holland. By boat. After surviving the dark and horrible days of occupation during the Second World War. When it seemed like the war might never end, when it seemed impossible to go one more day without food, they were liberated, made free by Canadian Forces on May 5, 1945.

My father was born in Canada, a first generation Canadian. Like so many others, my family’s story started in another country, but Canada has become our home.

As we celebrate 150 years of our great nation and look to the future, we cannot celebrate Canada without celebrating peace or freedom.

What an amazing country we live in! We are blessed with so much freedom, safety, and opportunity. We have the freedom to think what we want, worship how we want, meet where we want, say what we want, believe what we want, do what we want, and read what want. We have the freedom to dream and plan for the future.

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