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Auriesville, New York — “This . . . is a cri de coeur, a cry from the heart. I am a lifelong Catholic, and I’ve been a priest for thirty-three years and a bishop for four years. I have dedicated my life to the Church. The sexual abuse scandal has been for me, for millions of other Catholics, and especially for the victim-survivors, lacerating. I have written this book for my fellow Catholics who feel, understandably demoralized, scandalized, angry beyond words, and ready to quit. What I finally urge my brothers and sisters in the Church to do is to stay and fight — and to do so on behalf of themselves and their families, but especially on behalf of those who have suffered so grievously at the hands of wicked men.”
I cracked open a copy of Bishop Robert Barron’s Letter to a Suffering Church and read this while sitting on the grounds of a “natural reliquary.” In the 17thcentury, French Jesuit missionary Father Isaac Jogues was among the Catholic priests tortured and killed in this Mohawk village. It’s hard to walk around here now and not feel intense awe and sorrow. Awe at these men who loved God and His people enough to be tortured for them — fingers mutilated to the point that Father Jogues couldn’t celebrate Mass (just about the worst thing you can do to a holy priest). Sorrow at the lack of faith in our day — so often in our lives and certainly in our culture.
Girl - Kateri - Tekakwitha - Place - Shrine
Not too long after, a girl named Kateri Tekakwitha was born here, a place now known as The Shrine of Our Lady of Martyrs, or of the North American Martyrs. She would be baptized not too far from here by Jesuit missionaries, in total love with Jesus Christ. When...
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