Grave on the Prairie

Seven Religious of the Sacred Heart and Saint Mary’s Mission to the Potawatomi

by Maureen J. Chicoine RSCJ



Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 7/30/2018

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 8.5x8.5
Page Count : 160
ISBN : 9781532052217
Format : E-Book
Dimensions : N/A
Page Count : 160
ISBN : 9781532052224

About the Book

Saint Philippine Duchesne and four religious companions of the Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus came from France to Louisiana in 1818 with the express desire of working among Native Americans to bring them knowledge of the love of Jesus Christ for them. After many years of educating the children of European settlers, Philippine finally realized her dream when she was sent to an encampment of the Potawatomi at Sugar Creek, Kansas. Her time among them was limited to one year; however, her sisters, the Religious of the Sacred Heart, continued to work among the Potawatomi for thirty-eight more years. This book is a carefully researched account of the life and work of these sisters among the Native Americans, the difficulties of adaptation of European women to frontier conditions, and the movement across Kansas with their people as the Potawatomi were pushed westward. Although the life of Saint Philippine has been studied extensively, until Maureen Chicoine undertook the research for this book, no complete account of the mission of the Society of the Sacred Heart to the Potawatomi existed. The book will shed light on a little known apostolic ministry of the Society in America in the nineteenth century.

About the Author

Maureen J. Chicoine, RSCJ, received a B.A. in History and Psychology from Mount Saint Mary College, Newburgh, New York, and an M.A. in Religious Studies from Fordham University. Born in St. Albans, Vermont, she was educated in parochial schools in Schenectady, New York. She has been a vowed religious since 1962 and transferred her vows to the Society of the Sacred Heart in 1982. She has worked in parish ministry in New Jersey, New York, and California. Most recently in the diocese of San Bernardino, she served as pastoral coordinator (leader of a parish without a resident priest as pastor) in Corona and San Bernardino, California. Maureen has long been interested in family history and genealogy as well as U.S. history. Her own native heritage on her paternal side has given her a special interest in Native People. For ten years she was a volunteer at the Soboba Indian Reservation in California. After retiring from over forty years of parish ministry, Maureen had time to research how the lives of RSCJ working in Kansas were influenced by their relationship with the Mission Band of the Potawatomi people. She lives in New Orleans, where she is involved in research, leading adult Bible classes, and working with young adults at Duchesne House for Volunteers.