— Louis Riel Canadian politician 1844 - 1885
Address to Grand Jury (1885)
Kontext: I have not assumed to myself that I had a mission. I was working in Manitoba first and I did all I could to get free institutions for Manitoba. They have those institutions today in Manitoba and they try to improve them, while myself who obtained them, I am forgotten as if I was dead. But after I had obtained with the help of others a constitution for Manitoba, when the government at Ottawa was not willing to inaugurate it at the proper time, I have worked till the inauguration should take place and that is why I have been banished for five years. I had to rest five years. I was unwilling to do it. I protested. I said : Oh my God! I offer you all my existence for that cause and please to make of my weakness an instrument to help men in my country. And seeing my intentions, the late Archbishop Bourget said "Riel has no narrow views, he is a man to accomplish great things" and he wrote that letter of which I hope that the Crown has at least a copy. And in another letter when I became what Drs. believed to be, insane, Bishop Bourget wrote again and said "Ye be blessed by God and man and take patience in your evil." Am I not taking patience I Will I be blessed by man as I have been by God?
I say that, I have been blessed by God and I hope that you will not take that as a presumptuous assertion. It has been a great success for me to come through all the dangers I have in that 15 years. If I have not succeeded in wearing a fine coat myself I have at the same time the great consolation of seeing that God has maintained my views; that he has maintained my health sufficiently to go through the world and that he has kept me from bullets when bullets marked my hat.