Kateri Tekakwitha, Lily of the Mohawks
Today I heard that the Catholic Church is coming closer to the canonization of Kateri Tekakwitha. For those unfamiliar with Catholicism, this would mean that Kateri would be recognized as a saint (she’s already been beatified by Pope John Paul II).
Kateri lived during the late 1600s and converted to Catholicism in 1656. She was recognized for her fervent Christian beliefs and pious life. Her beliefs were what brought her to the Jesuit settlement of St.Francois Xavier du Sault as she came here to escape pressures to give up her new beliefs.
I was of two minds in writing this post because of the tragic destruction of Native American culture and spirituality that has taken place since Europeans arrived in North America. However, I do admire Kateri as someone who stood up for her beliefs – and I wonder how many of us today would give up so much for our religious or philosophical convictions.
The vintage postcard on the right depicts St-Francois-Xavier church while the one on the left shows the presbytery. Kateri is interred in the Mohawk community of Kahnawake, Quebec.