By Richard Senate
They were small in stature, almost the size of children; they were kneeling on the floor. They were wearing rags, and one I recall had a blanket around him. They had long hair that was dirty and stringy that hung down to their shoulders. One of the three, the one closest to me, turned and looked up at me. I saw he had scars and red sores on his face. There was a pleading quality in his expression. I also saw behind them a bright mural painted on the wall. It was red, yellow, and green, depicting a sort of decorative vase and swags of flowers. Then, as quickly as it came, the whole thing vanished and I was once again left in the church with a sick feeling in my stomach. I was positive I saw Native Americans, but my vision was nothing like the paintings and depictions of the happy, white-clad mission converts found at this mission and in books. The three I saw were starving, sick, dirty, and miserable. The mural I saw was almost garish and nothing like the paintings that now adorn the restored walls.