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Foreign News and HuffPo Get What American News Media Misses

October 21, 2012

First Native American to be named saint

For the first time in history, a Native American will be appointed a saint by the Vatican. Kateri Tekakwitha is being honoured for the miracles she is believed to have performed from the grave.

Al Jazeera’s Bhanu Bhatnagar explains.Kateri Tekakwitha

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ROME – The Roman Catholic Church, whose missions to convert the natives of North America to Christianity go back nearly four centuries, opens a new chapter in its relations with the indigenous peoples of the continent today when it canonizes a 17th-century Mohawk Indian as the first American Indian saint.

The ceremony honoring Kateri Tekakwitha, born in what is now upstate New York, is set to take place in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican along with that of six others whom Pope Benedict XVI named in December, including Blessed Marianne Cope, a German-born nun who ministered to lepers in Hawaii. Thousands of American Indian pilgrims are expected, many in full tribal regalia, and Hawaii is sending dancers.

American Indians have venerated Kateri from the time of her death in 1680 at age 24 near what is now Montreal, and many cures have been attributed to divine intercession following prayers to her. But it took 332 years for her to reach the pantheon of saints, following what the church deemed a miraculous recovery of a young boy of Lummi Indian descent in Washington from a dreaded bacterial infection.

She was proposed for inquiry in the late 19th century and given “venerable” status in 1942, the first step to sainthood. She was beatified in 1980, the second step in the process.

Kateri Tekakwitha, also known as Lily of the Mohawks, was born in 1656 in what is today upstate New York. At the time, Dutch, English and French colonialists were fighting for control of the territory and brought with them foreign diseases. When her village was hit by a smallpox epidemic, both her parents and younger brother were killed. Kateri survived but was left with scars on her face and seriously impaired vision. It was because of her poor eyesight that she came to be known as Tekakwitha — meaning she who bumps into things’.She converted to Catholicism when she was twenty years old, a decision her uncle, the chief of the village, was very unhappy about. After refusing to marry the Mohawk man who had been chosen for her, Kateri traveled by foot and canoe the 200 miles to a Jesuit-run missionary village near Montreal.

How disappointing can it be that I could find NO mention of this important event on CNN, ABC, NBC or FOX news sources, until days after the story broke.  Guess where I found it first … Hmmmm, Al Jazeera!

After using Google, I discovered the story on Huffington Post, and many overseas news sources.  BBC, Canada, Catholic News sources and Al Jazeera, were the first to break the news. If you Google Kateri now, you will see NBC and NY Times has recently picked up the story about the Mohican girl from the 1600’s, who became a saint.  This story is remarkable on many levels.  The Process of Becoming a Saint is arduous, at best.  The Catholic Church requires many steps, including thorough investigation, consensus and verification.


The following is the list of American saints, including the year in which they were canonized.

Why does American news media miss such a significant event in North American history?  Regardless of your political or religious affiliation, a Native American being Beatified is BIG NEWS!

If American News Media is really to be credible, it will have to cut it’s umbilical cord to the skewed corporate influence that decides what the American people need to know.  Corporations have driven the last nail into the coffin of free speech.  21st Century Journalism in America has disappeared.  Yellow Journalism from the turn of the century has returned.  Thanks to the Politicization of the Court Supreme Court, corporations have succeeded in implementing a Coup d’état, and assumed political and social control of America.  Corporations decide what news Americans need to hear and see.  Americans are the naughty children of Corporate Parenthood and must be disciplined by filtering their news sources.


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