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All the Agents and SaintsDispatches from the U.S. Borderlands$
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Stephanie Elizondo Griest

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781469631592

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469631592.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 01 July 2022

The Saint

The Saint

(p.178) 14 The Saint
All the Agents and Saints

Stephanie Elizondo Griest

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter explores the cult of Kateri Tekakwitha, the Mohawk maiden whose tremendous spiritual discipline (which included daily self-flagellation with tree branches, hot coals, and thorns) convinced Jesuit missionaries that Indians could be “holy” too. Since dying at age 24 in 1680, she—like Mother Julia in South Texas—hasn’t had a moment’s rest: she’s been causing miracles around the St. Lawrence River Valley (and beyond) ever since. In October 2012, she was canonized a Saint by the Vatican—the first Native American ever to be so. More than a thousand Mohawks flew to Rome to bear witness. In this chapter, the author joins the thousand who descended upon Kahnawake, the Mohawk Nation just south of Montreal, Quebec, where Kateri is buried, instead. There, at the Mission of Saint Francis Xavier, she meets an Algonquin woman who graduated from Indian Residential School and learns about the brutal legacies of Catholicism on Mohawk land.

Keywords:   Mohawk saint, Kahnawake, Montreal, Canada, Saint Kateri Tekakwitha, Oka, Quebec, Catholicism, longhouse, La Malinche, Indian residential school, Mission of St. Francis Xavier

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