Padre Kino and the Trail to the Pacific
Father Kino’s greatest wish was to be sent from his Italian mountain home to China as a missionary – to follow in the footsteps of his hero St. Francis Xavier. Instead he was sent to Mexico where his great work was the mapping and exploration of Pimeria Alta (now Sonora, northern Mexico and southern Arizona). He became father and hero to the Pima nations, building twenty-nine missions and baptizing four thousand native peoples. He was tirelessly in pursuit of the kingdom of heaven, battling the forces of nature and the Spanish colonists for the dignity of the Pima people. His was a life devoted to God and to his fellow man – a life, as he described it, full of Heavenly Favors.