Canadian Jewish Political Affairs Committee
Aristides de Sousa Mendes

Mr. Speaker, there are moments in the life of a Parliament when colleagues from all parties come together in common cause: to remember and to be reminded, to inspire and be inspired.
 
Such a moment occurred this week, when MPs commemorated the 125th anniversary of the birth of Portuguese diplomat Aristides de Sousa Mendes, and the 40th anniversary of his saving 30,000 people-12,000 of them Jews-with his visas for life in 1940, reminding us of the Talmudic/Koranic adage that whoever saves a single life, it is as if he or she has saved an entire universe.
 
This singular heroism of de Sousa Mendes, whose namesake grandson, Louis Philippe Mendes, is a resident of my constituency of Mount Royal, ennobles us all. He never received the honour he deserved in his life. May his memory serve as a blessing for us all.