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By Richard W. Pointer

Historians have lengthy been acutely aware that the come across with Europeans affected all facets of local American lifestyles. yet have been Indians the single ones replaced by means of those cross-cultural conferences? may the beginners' methods, together with their non secular ideals and practices, have additionally been altered amid their myriad contacts with local peoples? In Encounters of the Spirit, Richard W. Pointer takes up those exciting questions in an cutting edge research of the spiritual come upon among Indians and Euro-Americans in early the United States. Exploring a sequence of episodes throughout the 3 centuries of the colonial period and stretching from New Spain to New France and the English settlements, he reveals that the movement of cultural effect was once extra frequently reciprocal than unidirectional. (2008)

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Extra info for Encounters of the Spirit: Native Americans and European Colonial Religion (Religion in North America)

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The next chapter traces how the religious encounter with Indians in the colonial southeast and elsewhere served as an important social context and intellectual stimulus for Euro-American theological reflection, construction, and refutation. Chapter 4 investigates the career of eighteenth-century INTRODUCTION 13 missionary David Brainerd amid the Delaware Indians of New Jersey and Pennsylvania and argues that Brainerd’s methods and mentality were profoundly shaped by the natives he encountered. Chapter 5 relates the stories of three Native American Christian preacher/teachers from mid-seventeenth-century New France, mid-eighteenth-century New York, and late eighteenth-century New York who were shaped in their ministries by the particular European Christian tradition (French Jesuit, German Moravian, English Congregational/Presbyterian) to which they belonged but who in turn influenced those bodies’ notions of religious leadership.

To conclude the ceremony, ‘‘the cope-bearers began the psalm, De profundis, during which the clergy and friars prepared to form the recessional. At the conclusion of De profundis, the singing of the response, Libera me, aroused the deepest devotion. The response completed, the archbishop . . and all the choristers . . ’’68 Magnificent services in magnificent churches. The Spanish who came to Mexico in the 1500s were realistic enough to know that such an ideal could be actualized only on rare occasions and in few places.

No uniform position or policy emerged in the 1500s. Certainly most friars worried about religious activities maintaining a proper amount of solemnity. ’’81 An ecclesiastical order of 1539 implies that some wanted to go 34 ENCOUNTERS OF THE SPIRIT much further in restricting Indian music. 82 But that pronouncement is hardly the whole story, for there is evidence that state and church officials took an interest in and even a liking to some native performances. In fact, local friars’ efforts to exercise occasional control over indigenous music seem to have occurred alongside a more general endorsement of Nahua singing and playing and appear timid in comparison with the more thoroughgoing restrictions legislated by church councils and the Spanish crown.

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