God is Good!

Seek the Lord while He may be found!

Alaska Diary – October 1976

Inupiat Family, Noatak, Alaska, 1930

While working with the Eskimos in Western Alaska, I kept a daily journal.  The following words come from my entries in October of 1976


Bethel, Alaska

Yesterday, Chuck Awe, a gold miner for 39 years, lunched with us.  I noticed he wore a heavy leather support around his wrist and concluded he had sprained it.  The fact was that he was carrying his monthly find of gold dust to the bank in an attaché case.  Gold is mighty heavy, and so he needed this leather support to strengthen his wrist.

He also mentioned that he had a .45 Colt in the case too, since he had recently lost twenty four thousand dollars in a robbery.  When was the last time you had a gold miner for lunch . . . Even Bishop William McManus of Chicago flew to Bethel and lunch in our little rectory a few days ago.

The other night, a husband and a wife, and Eskimo couple, and their week old baby slept across the hall from me.  They had come from a village up the Kuskokwim River because of the baby’s sickness.  We ate breakfast together.

I see many instances of strong faith in God in my daily rounds . . . a father coming to Church on Sunday to give thanks for his new born daughter . . . a mother looking at her newborn baby struggling for its breath in the incubator in the Hospital . . . praying with her to accept whatever might happen . . . an aged Eskimo woman sitting up in bed, with her feet curled underneath her, receiving the Lord with downcast eyes and folded hands.  She would make an excellent subject for some talented artist.

I suppose in Chicago we would take these examples for granted because of the rush of life there, but here in Alaska, these simple little happenings increase my personal faith.

An Eskimo never begins to eat anything until he makes the sign of the cross . . . to him, food is one of the gifts of God . . . The Eskimo makes the sign of the cross slowly and reverently . . . before and after every meal.

Fr. George Mc Kenna

September 22, 2012 - Posted by | Bulletins


  1. I’m hooked! Almost daily I’ve been checking your page since the last entry. Love your writing and perspective. God bless–

    Comment by Anonymous | September 25, 2012 | Reply

  2. I’m hooked. Almost daily I check your blog to see if anything was posted! God bless—

    Comment by Mary Jo | September 25, 2012 | Reply

  3. Was a brilliant idea to keep a diary then. We are able to hop in a holy time machine and relive it with you but with your insight. Thank you.

    Comment by Anonymous | October 10, 2012 | Reply

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