9 a.m., Oct. 21)
Orléans Catholic school's namesake granted sainthood
Tekakwitha was a 17th century Mohawk woman
who remain steadfast to her faith despite
the ravages of small pox and the persecution
of non-Christian natives. File photo
Kateri Tekakwitha Catholic School in Chapel Hill will
soon become St. Kateri Tekakwitha Catholic scool after
the 17th century Mohawk woman was among six people granted
sainthood by Pope Benedict XVI on Sunday.
as "Lily of the Mohawks", Tekakwitha was born
in 1656 to a pagan Iroquis father and a Christian Algonquin
mother. Her parents and only brother died when she was
four during a small pox epidemic that left her nearly
blind and her face badly scarred.
her parents death she was adopted by her Mohawk uncle
and was baptized Catholic by Jesuit missionaries. As a
young woman she was ostracized and persecuted by other
natives for her faith. She died in 1680 at the age of
body is entombed in a marble shrine at the St. Francis-Xavier
Church in Kahnawake.
became a candidate for canonization after the Catholic
church ruled that she provided devine intervention in
the 2006 case of a five-year-old American boy who battled
for his life after suffering from flesh-eating bacteria.
Finkbonner was so close to death that his parents had
last rites performed and were discussing donating his
organs. His recovery from the infection was deemed medically
inexplicable by the Vatican. and could only have been
a result of Kateri Tekakwitha's intervention.
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