The Lily of the Mohawks: 1656-1680
+ Tekakwitha was born around 1656 of a young Christian Algonquin woman and a non-Christian Mohawk chief. Baptized when she was almost 20, she received the name “Kateri” at baptism, in honor of Saint Catherine of Siena.
+ Shortly after her baptism she took a vow of virginity, offering herself totally to God.
+ The last years of her life were spent in prayer and caring for the sick at a Jesuit mission near Montreal, even as she herself was dying of tuberculosis.
+ Saint Kateri Tekakwitha died at Kahnawake, Canada, in 1680. She was canonized in 2012.
Nearly every year since 1939, Native American Catholics and those who minister in their communities have gathered for the annual Tekakwitha Conference. To learn more about the Tekakwitha Conference, visit: http://tekconf.org/
“Kateri impresses us by the action of grace in her life in spite of the absence of external help and by the courage of her vocation, so unusual in her culture. In her, faith and culture enrich each other! May her example help us to live where we are, loving Jesus without denying who we are.”—Pope Benedict XVI
O God, who desired the Virgin St. Kateri Tekakwitha to flower among Native Americans in a life of innocence, grant, through her intercession, that when all are gathered into your Church from every nation, tribe and tongue, they may magnify you in a single canticle of praise. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(from The Roman Missal)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.