Clement starts final step in Alexandria-Cornwall, Ottawa Catholic church merger

(Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

OTTAWA – Senator Bernadette Clement has started the final process to allow the diocese in Alexandria-Cornwall and the archdiocese in Ottawa to merge.

Picking up the process started by New Brunswick Senator Pierrette Ringuette, Clement has started the steps for a private bill in the upper house “necessary to complete the civil amalgamation.”

The move is more procedural as the Pope announced the amalgamation, now called the Archdiocese of Ottawa-Cornwall, three years ago.

A petition was introduced yesterday, which will be followed by a bill and debate in the chamber, expected to start Tuesday.

The senator’s office explained the private bill is used to amend existing acts of incorporation – in this case the two dioceses are episcopal corporations.

The bill will lay out all the terms, including property, liabilities and legal claims, that will be the responsibility of the new corporation.

“I hope Eastern Ontario parishioners take a look at this procedure by watching proceedings, reading speeches, and reaching out to my office with any questions,” Clement said in a news release.