The Life of Father de Smet S. J.by E. Laveille Sj
ONE of the brightest glories of the Catholic Church shines forth in the zeal she has ever displayed for the propagation of the Gospel. From the time when Christ said to His Apostles: "Go ye into the whole world and preach the Gospel to every creature," they and their successors, the missionaries of every age, have bravely carried on the sacred task entrusted to them, without any interruption whatsoever; and they are seen to-day as they have been seen all along, in every known portion of the earth, extending the kingdom of Christ, and preparing numberless souls for the enjoyment of heavenly bliss.
In the United States in particular the Church has nobly performed this divine mission. She has sent her heroic sons, bishops and priests, in large numbers to every tribe.
If the aboriginal population, baptizing, teaching, and civilizing its scattered millions, successful in converting and sanctifying large portions of them, notwithstanding the active opposition of false religionists.
Many of the most glowing pages of the great Protestant historian of the United States, George Bancroft, contain magnificent descriptions of the devoted labors of our Catholic missionaries, whose wonderful exploits he narrates with all the brilliancy and interest which attach to the writinJts of Prescott in his records of the Conquest of Mexico by Hernando Cortez. But every Christian feels, while reading such works, how far the sacred purpose and the self-sacrifice of the missionaries among the Indians surpnss in nobility the dauntless courage of the steel-clad warriors.
Father de Smet went all across the wild west in the mid 1800's. From Missouri, de Smet went west to the Pottawatomie mission at Saint Marys, Kansas. Then this 'black robe' was sent to the Rocky Mountains and on to Oregon. Fromn here Father de Smet is sent to Rome where he meets Pope Gregory XVI. Eventually Father de Smet was back in Saint Louis in the Missouri province of the Jesuits.
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