chapter
13 Pages

Introduction

WithLaura M. Chmielewski

Jacques Marquette prayed and worked for a transformation of religion. As a Catholic priest, he brought with him the belief that Native peoples had to be Christians before they could ever enjoy the eternal bliss of its afterlife. A common misconception of Christian missionary work in the early Americas is that priests and ministers were able to coerce, intimidate, and use physical force to achieve the goal of "making" Native peoples into Christians. Louis Jolliet was tasked with providing the French colonial government with information on the great waterway in the continent's center. In 1673, explorers like Jolliet hoped to find this passage and claim it for their monarch. Jolliet was always on the lookout for animals to kill and skin; Marquette wanted to transform Native American lives forever. The chapter also presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book.