|Gift to OLR from the Wilsons in MT. (King Kuka-Blackfoot Artist)|
When I was completing my doctorate, I had several chances to lecture in Montreal.
The first time, my dear friend and mentor, Ira Perrell ( a non-practicing Jew) came with me. I asked him if he would like to stop at the reservation where Bl. Kateri Tekakwith was buried. Ira, being open to any adventure, said why not and it was on our way to Montreal.
I am sure that after the beatification of St. Kateri in 1980, tourism greatly increased since the days when I was there. I remember poverty, dirt roads, and somber faces. Ira and I had not eaten and found an unmarked house where people seemed to be sitting inside. They were quiet and shy of us, but pleasant.
Looking across the St-Lawrence River & Seaway (at Kahnawake)
When St. Kateri died, two French settlers so moved by the sight of her radiant, peaceful face built a wood coffin to hold her precious remains. When the mission moved from one location to another, her bones were too valuable to leave behind and were exhumed. The coffin made identification possible because St.Kateri was the only Indian buried in such a fashion.
Her grave stone reads:
Kateri Tekakwitha Ownkeonweke
|"The fairest flower that ever bloomed among red men".|
Artist- Regina Ammerman, AZ