Her Excellency the Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean
Speech on the Occasion of a Reception for the Diplomatic Corps
Rideau Hall, Thursday, January 22, 2009
Welcome to Rideau Hall.
I am delighted to welcome you at the start of a new year.
We saw 2008 come to a close in the midst of crisis.
An economic crisis, a food crisis, humanitarian crises brought about by natural disasters, conflicts, energy crises, resource crises: no one was spared.
People around the world share the same concerns.
People around the world feel the same urgent need to take action.
Given the magnitude of the challenges before us—challenges that reach far beyond our respective borders—the time has come for us to work together to find common solutions.
Clearly, we can no longer go it alone in a world where the issues of the day concern us all.
The time has come for solidarity, dialogue and co‑operation.
Which is why your work as ambassadors and high commissioners is vitally important.
Your work is a perfect example of the willingness to engage in dialogue and an attempt to balance the interests of some with the needs of others.
No one can predict what tomorrow will bring.
But we can certainly imagine the future and do everything in our power to shape it into all that we hope it will become.
That is what I am urging you to do today.
To work together to invent the world in which we want to live.
To rethink it in terms of the values we share rather than the borders that separate us.
And to pool our strengths, talents and ideas to make tomorrow’s world a reality today.
Such a world can only be more compassionate, more just, more human.
May our best wishes for peace, happiness and prosperity go with you, your families and your fellow citizens.
We look forward to seeing you again very soon and to working toward bringing our peoples together.