Pope Benedict XVI has signed the decree recognizing a miracle performed by Kateri, and she will therefore be canonized at a ceremony sometime in the future.
According to the biography at katerishrine.com, Kateri’s father was a Mohawk chief and her mother was Algonquin (Catholic News Service specifies that her mother was also a Christian); her parents and brother died of smallpox when she was four, and the disease left her with facial disfigurements and impaired vision. She was consequently given the name “Tekakwitha,” which means “she who bumps into things.” Her uncle, who was chief of the Turtle Clan of Mohawks, adopted her. Though he is described as “bitterly opposed to Christianity,” he eventually relented, and Kateri was baptized in 1676 at the age of 20. She died four years later. The name “Kateri” is a derivation of Catherine, taken at her baptism, according to Wikipedia, as a tribute to Catherine of Siena.
Also according to Wikipedia, the process of Kateri’s canonization began in 1884; Pope Pius XII declared her venerable in 1943, and Pope John Paul II beatified her in 1980. She was at that time the first American Indian to be beatified.
Kateri Tekakwitha will become North America's first aboriginal saint
The Vatican announced that Kateri Tekakwitha, of Kahnawake, will become North America's first aboriginal saint.
Deacon Ronald Boyer is the Canadian vice-postulator for her canonization. He has been advocating for Tekakwitha to be named a saint since 2007.
He said native people in North America have been pushing to have her declared a saint since her death, 331 years ago.