A Canadian Family

First Nations, French Canadians & Acadians

Kateri Tekakwitha, Lily of the Mohawks

Caughnawaga | KahnawakeUpdate: Exciting news – It has been announced that Kateri will in fact be elevated to sainthood!

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 churchkahnawakewho stood up for her beliefs – and I wonder how many of us today would give up so much for our religious or philosophical convictions.

Resting place of Kateri Tekakwitha

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.

Related Posts:


Topical index: Kateri Tekawitha

Kateri Tekakwitha, Lily of the Mohawks

Blessed Kateri (Catherine) Tekakwitha (1890) Ceremony in Laprairie

Petition To The Pope (ca. 1885) For Recognition of Catherine Tegakwita, Blackgown Isaac Jogues & Brother Rene Goupil

Kateri Tekakwitha – Her life recounted by John O’Kane Murray (1877)

August 13, 2009 - Posted by | . | ,


  1. Lovely images of Lilly of the Mohawks. There has been things that could have been handled better in the past, but there is no reason why we should not celebrate the good things in life and people who in their own way tried to help.


    Comment by Pearl Maple | August 13, 2009 | Reply

  2. I agree with Pearl.
    Also I love photos of churches, although I rarely ever set foot in them. I just think they are beautiful buildings and I think about my ancestors and how much time they spent in them.


    Comment by Lori E | August 15, 2009 | Reply

    • You are not alone is rarely setting foot in a church.
      There has been a great falloff of church attendance in Quebec and we are really jam packed with Catholic churches. It’s due to increasing secularization, shifting demographics as non-Christians move into Quebec as well as a sharp drop in the birth rate.
      There’s a lot of angst as practising Catholics (and other Christians) try to decide which churches to save, and as Quebeckers in general try to determine what is or is not an appropriate use for old churches.
      Thanks for the comment!


      Comment by evelynyvonnetheriault | August 15, 2009 | Reply

  3. I loved seeing Blessed Kateri again. Thank you.I grew up in Ontario Canada and the nuns taught us all about this wonderful young woman. With all of its faults, I love the fact that the Catholic Church has saints for us to admire and relate to.You’re so right about the many churches. When I visited those of my ancestors last summer, and even found plaques in their names, I thought about how important they were to keep some sense of order and community to the first settlers in the 1600s.God bless them all.They wouldn’t believe the lives we live now.


    Comment by JeannineS | August 17, 2009 | Reply

    • I agree with your comment “with all its faults, I love the fact that the Catholic church has saints for us to admire and relate to”.
      It’s easy to become cynical with the very real problems in churches and society in general, but it’s important to remain aspirational in the sense of living life well. I’m not a practising Catholic but some Catholics that I admire are St.Francis of Assisi (I named my daughter after him), St.Teresa of Avila and of course, Mother Theresa.
      Thanks for your comment!


      Comment by evelynyvonnetheriault | August 17, 2009 | Reply



    Comment by anomus | November 1, 2009 | Reply

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