Museum of Ontario Archaeology, Martyrs Shrine, Huron-Wendat Museum, 2017
Fade in: The Decision to Leave Christian Island: Jesuit Perspective
Father Michael is sitting in his office that overlooks the stone façade of the Martyr’s Shrine.
(Fr.Michael Knox (PhD), Martyr’s Shrine)
It would not be unreasonable to say that in many ways the mission of the Jesuits to the Wendat Nation was always a partnership. Whether it be something as simple as the native peoples building the first house that Brebeuf lived in when he came, to something as great as the building of the fortification of Ste. Marie, there was always a level of partnership and relationship.
Keep in mind that you have a group of Europeans coming into a world in very small numbers relying on the support and advice of the people they’d come to evangelize in order to learn how to live in a way that they can survive and even flourish.
All that being said, it would seem illogical to consider that the advice of the Wendat Christians was not a part of the decision to decide where the mission should go. After all it was their nation, it was their land, the Jesuits were guests, and so it would be their choice.
The fall of Ste. Marie, or the burning of Ste. Marie, and the lack of success at Ste. Marie II and the fading off of these people into the realms of history was not so, and the Jesuits continued to work among various native peoples, committed to the Wendat who lived around Quebec City, committed to the various nations in that area, all the way to the East Coast and then through Quebec, Ontario, and what is now upstate New York, for centuries afterwards.
Fade out: End credits.
Special Thanks: Ron Williamson, Peter Carruthers, Fr. Michael Knox, Louis Lesage
Filming: Nicole Aszalos, Eliza Brandy