St. Kateri Tekakwitha is the first Native American to be recognized as a saint by the Catholic Church. She was born in the Mohawk village of Ossernenon to a Mohawks warrior and an Algonquin Christian mother in 1656.
She contracted smallpox as a four-year-old child which scarred her skin. The scars were a source of humiliation in her youth. Worse, her entire family died during the outbreak. Kateri Tekakwitha was subsequently raised by her uncle, who was the chief of a Mohawk clan. At age 19, she converted to Catholicism, taking a vow of chastity and pledging to marry only Jesus Christ. Kateri was very devout and was known for her steadfast devotion.
St. Kateri Tekakwitha was canonized by Pope Benedict XVI on Oct. 21, 2012. She is the patroness of ecology and the environment, people in exile and Native Americans. This retablo measures five inches in height.