PEI

Canada and Japan are 'kindred spirits,' says Princess Takamado

Princess Takamado of Japan was in Cavendish, P.E.I., Wednesday afternoon to commemorate the 90th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Canada and Japan.

Princess is the international patron of the Lucy Maud Montgomery Institute

Anne of Green Gables continues to give hope and encouragement to many around the world, says Princess Takamado of Japan. (Shane Hennessey/CBC)

Princess Takamado of Japan was in Cavendish, P.E.I., Wednesday afternoon to commemorate the 90th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Canada and Japan.

To honour the occasion, the princess celebrated the official opening of Montgomery Park and a new statue dedicated to L.M. Montgomery. 

The princess is the international patron of the Lucy Maud Montgomery Institute. 

She took the opportunity to speak about P.E.I.'s beloved author and the lasting power of her stories.  

"The novels of Ms. Montgomery have managed to capture the imagination of so many people around the world and Anne of Green Gables has continued to give hope and encouragement to many," she said. 

'Power of words and stories'

In her address to the large crowd, she also touched on the importance of words. 

"The power that rests in rich vocabulary, it's potential to comfort and encourage — but also to hurt. And that is a lesson we should all take to heart ... and today, when the world is subject to so much divisiveness this homage to Lucy Maud Montgomery is most timely and relevant," she said. 

"I think that we may say that although we differ physically, Canada and Japan are indeed kindred spirits." 

It's a very, very special day when you can visit with royalty. ​— Brad Trivers, minister of education

Witnessing the unveiling of the new statue was a special moment, said Minister of Education Brad Trivers. 

"To be here today in Cavendish, where Lucy Maud Montgomery spent a great part of her life and to see this park and the statue unveiled — I think it means a whole, huge amount to not only this area but the entire Island," he said.  

'It's important to keep these ties strong,' says Minister of Education Brad Trivers, of the relationship between Japan and Canada. (Shane Hennessey/CBC)

"It's a very, very special day when you can visit with royalty and in this case it's such an intimate connection between Japan and Prince Edward Island," Trivers said. "It's important to keep these ties strong." 

This is princess Takamado's first visit to Prince Edward Island since 2004.

During her visit, the princess will also be taking part in the grand opening of the new visitor centre at Green Gables Heritage Place on Thursday. 

A performance is also set to take place featuring characters from L.M. Mongomery's novels. 

More P.E.I. news

With files from Main Street and Sarah MacMillan

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