“I am sorry, Father. I hate to disturb Matins, but you have been summoned.”

Padre Sebastién had been expecting this for months. He suppressed a grunt as he arose from the prayer bench. He was tired. Perhaps now he could have some rest on the passage back. He smiled at his audacity. He was a poor sailor, apt to be ill for weeks on end.

The boy looked up at him. “I am frightened, father. The soldiers were most disrespectful.”

“Hush, Pablo. You must go now and gather your things. We are to sail back to Portugal.”

“Portugal?” said the boy. “But I have never  even left Santo Domingo.”

“Well, it seems God has decided it is time you do so. Come. We must make haste.”

Outside in the courtyard, the armored Spanish soldiers leaned on their spears. “These cursed heretic Jesuits,” said one. “Would we might slaughter them all.”


What Pegman Saw


Historical Note: Believing that the Society of Jesus had acquired too much wealth and influence over Spanish affairs, King Charles III expelled the Jesuits from all Spanish-controlled territories in 1767 and turned over possessions controlled by the Jesuits to other religious orders. At this time, the order consisted of 24 professed-houses, 369 colleges, 170 seminaries, 61 novitiate-houses, 335 residences, and 273 missions in heathen and Protestant countries, and 22,589 members of all ranks, half of whom were ordained priests .


Add Yours
  1. rochellewisoff

    Dear Josh,

    Too bad the history books weren’t written like this. I might’ve paid better attention or at least stayed awake during class. ;) Well written. Excellent piece.



  2. Dale

    I cannot help but think of “The Mission” – things did not end well there..

    Well done! As I mentioned to Karen, I am considering joining in on your challenge!

  3. pennygadd51

    A well-researched and well told story. You put human faces to the consequences of a King’s command, helping those of us who are not historians to understand properly. Nice writing!

  4. Lynn Love

    Love the the tone of this – as usual, you’ve chosen the right feel for the period and place. The contrast between the characters works well too, the old priest resigned to his fate, the young one nervous and fretful at the unknown. Well written and informative. Thanks for the historical notes.

Don't just stand there.