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JESUITICA: Midwives to a nation

canada_sj_01The national Catholic newspaper of Canada has published a 36-page homage to the Jesuits as they mark 400 years in Canada. According to Jim O’Leary, the editor, “More so than any other religious order, the Jesuits not only witnessed the birth of Canada, they shaped significant parts of its history.” The Jesuits arrived in Canada in 1611, at Port Royal in Acadia on the shores of the Bay of Fundy. “Over the decades that followed, the Jesuits moved steadily inland and, while fulfilling their mission as evangelists, they also became explorers, cartographers, educators, chroniclers and pastors,” O’Leary noted. The Register paid for an additional 14,000 copies of the tribute to be delivered to elementary schools, as O’Leary explained that “the story of the Jesuit martyrs is an important part of the Canadian education curriculum.”