Saturday, December 13, 2008

America: 17th Century: the Spanish and French: A History Lesson

When Columbus discovered America in 1492, he was not just looking for a new route to the Indies, but he was also hoping to discover new sources of wealth to finance another Crusade against the Muslims and also to ally with leaders in the Far East to help against the Muslims in the Middle East. When he encountered the non-Christian natives of the New World, his religious inclinations predominated again, as he and Ferdinand put forth efforts to protect, convert and educate the Native American Indians.

Spanish priests began to accompany the explorers and conquerors. A bishopric was established at Santo Domingo in 1512 (now the capital and largest city in the Dominican Republic, and the second largest in the Caribbean). Bartholomew Columbus, brother of Christopher Columbus, founded the settlement and named it after Saint Dominic.

Another bishopric was established in Cuba in 1522, and then others followed in rapid succession. The University of Mexico and the University of San Marcos (in Lima, Peru) were both founded in 1551. Others were built in Latin America as well. When you consider that the Spanish usually sent their sons back to Europe for their education, you realize that these New World institutions were mainly for the training of the natives.

Although it is true that the Spanish also oppressed and mistreated the Indians over the centuries, it is also true that the church put forth sincere and expensive efforts to protect the natives in the early days. Shortly after the death of Martin Luther, the Spanish settled Florida (St. Augustine, 1565). From there, they went to New Mexico and Texas. In fact, they were establishing their missions in California while Jefferson was writing the Declaration of Independence. Portuguese settlement in Brazil began in 1532, so the Roman Catholic church was established there as well. All of Latin America and part of the U.S. responded to religious efforts of Spanish and Portuguese priests.

The French, on the other hand, were not able to establish a permanent colony until 1608, which was in Quebec, Canada. The scarcity of French settlers in the New World, inadequate colonial policies, and the defeat of French forces ultimately brought an end to the French Empire in North America in 1763, as well as the effects of French Jesuit work, except for Quebec and Louisiana.

(Information for this article is from “Exploring Church History,” by Howard F. Vos, Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1994. Some information is from Wikepedia.)


thekingpin68 said...

Good work, Jeff.

In regard to the previous article and comments and the mention of Isaiah. Interestingly...

Isaiah 43
Israel Redeemed
1But now, thus says the LORD, your (A)Creator, O Jacob,
And He who (B)formed you, O Israel,
"Do not (C)fear, for I have (D)redeemed you;
I have (E)called you by name; you are (F)Mine!
2"When you (G)pass through the waters, (H)I will be with you;
And through the rivers, they will not overflow you
When you (I)walk through the fire, you will not be scorched,
Nor will the flame burn you.
3"For (J)I am the LORD your God,
The Holy One of Israel, your (K)Savior;
I have given Egypt as your ransom,
(L)Cush and Seba in your place.
4"Since you are (M)precious in My sight,
Since you are (N)honored and I (O)love you,
I will give other men in your place and other peoples in exchange for your life.
5"Do not fear, for (P)I am with you;
I will bring (Q)your offspring from the east,
And (R)gather you from the west.
6"I will say to the (S)north, 'Give them up!'
And to the south, 'Do not hold them back '
Bring My (T)sons from afar
And My daughters from the (U)ends of the earth,
7Everyone who is (V)called by My name,
And whom I have (W)created for My (X)glory,
(Y)Whom I have formed, even whom I have made."
Israel Is God's Witness
8Bring out the people who are (Z)blind, even though they have eyes,
And the deaf, even though they have ears.
9All the nations have (AA)gathered together
So that the peoples may be assembled
Who among them can (AB)declare this
And proclaim to us the former things?
Let them present (AC)their witnesses (AD)that they may be justified,
Or let them hear and say, "It is true."
10"You are (AE)My witnesses," declares the LORD,
"And (AF)My servant whom I have chosen,
So that you may know and believe Me
And understand that (AG)I am He
(AH)Before Me there was no God formed,
And there will be none after Me.
11"I, even I, am the LORD,
And there is no (AI)savior (AJ)besides Me.

12"It is I who have declared and saved and proclaimed,
And there was no (AK)strange god among you;
So you are My witnesses," declares the LORD,
"And I am God.
13"Even (AL)from eternity (AM)I am He,
And there is (AN)none who can deliver out of My hand;
(AO)I act and who can reverse it?"
Babylon to Be Destroyed
14Thus says the LORD your (AP)Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel,
"For your sake I have sent to Babylon,
And will bring them all down as fugitives,
Even the (AQ)Chaldeans, into the (AR)ships [a]in which they rejoice.
15"I am the LORD, your Holy One,
(AS)The Creator of Israel, your (AT)King."
16Thus says the LORD,
Who (AU)makes a way through the sea
And a path through the mighty waters,
17Who brings forth the (AV)chariot and the horse,
The army and the mighty man
(They will lie down together and not rise again;
They have been (AW)quenched and extinguished like a wick):
18"(AX)Do not call to mind the former things,
Or ponder things of the past.
19"Behold, I will do something (AY)new,
Now it will spring forth;
Will you not be aware of it?
I will even (AZ)make a roadway in the wilderness,
Rivers in the desert.
20"The beasts of the field will glorify Me,
The (BA)jackals and the ostriches,
Because I have (BB)given waters in the wilderness
And rivers in the desert,
To give drink to My chosen people.
21"The people whom (BC)I formed for Myself
(BD)Will declare My praise.

The Shortcomings of Israel
22"Yet you have not called on Me, O Jacob;
But you have become (BE)weary of Me, O Israel.
23"You have (BF)not brought to Me the sheep of your burnt offerings,
Nor have you (BG)honored Me with your sacrifices
I have not (BH)burdened you with offerings,
Nor wearied you with (BI)incense.
24"You have bought Me not (BJ)sweet cane with money,
Nor have you filled Me with the fat of your sacrifices;
Rather you have burdened Me with your sins,
You have (BK)wearied Me with your iniquities.
25"I, even I, am the one who (BL)wipes out your transgressions (BM)for My own sake,
And I will (BN)not remember your sins.
26"Put Me in remembrance, (BO)let us argue our case together;
State your cause, (BP)that you may be proved right.
27"Your (BQ)first forefather sinned,
And your (BR)spokesmen have transgressed against Me.
28"So I will pollute the princes of the sanctuary,
And I will consign Jacob to the (BS)ban and Israel to (BT)revilement.

There are some new comments on my blogs.:)

thekingpin68 said...

Jeff, taking a break?

I hope your Mom is okay.

I am going for a walk in the -7 with wind chill night weather.


Jeff said...


My mom has a slight cough that is almost gone; other than that, she seems fine. Thank you.

I was busy over the weekend (Christmas concert on Sat. and out of town Sun. for a photo shoot), so today I was catching up on my many (over 100) Requests, Invitations and Notifications, plus Facebook games.

Man, you're actually going outside in the evening when its that cold? I would be sitting next to a fireplace!

It is 70 degrees here in Florida. I am SO glad that I don't live where it snows.