An exhibition of the “The Gospels in Nez Perce: The Evangelizing Work of Fr. Joseph Cataldo, S.J.” has opened in the Cowles Rare Books Library on the top floor of the Foley Center Library at Gonzaga University. The exhibition, on display through Dec. 31, features rare books and documents. It is free and open to the public.
Rev. Cataldo, founder of Gonzaga in 1887, devoted most of his life to missionary work in the Pacific Northwest. He and fellow Jesuits translated the Gospels, prayers, catechetical texts and hymns into the native vernaculars of the individual tribes, including Crow, Blackfoot, Assiniboine, and Nez Perce.
The first half of the exhibition focuses on translations into Nez Perce and other languages of the New World. A highlight is a handwritten Nez Perce hymn book from 1909. The second half of the display puts these New World translations in the context of Jewish and Christian Scriptural translation. Valuable facsimiles of biblical manuscripts in Hebrew and Greek and a 16th-century first edition Bible in English are features.
The exhibition is open from 9 a.m.-noon and 1-4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. It will be closed for holidays Oct. 20, Nov. 27-28, and Dec. 24-31. A free public reception will be held at the Cowles Rare Books Library on Oct. 23, 3:30-5 p.m. Visit the exhibition’s Web site and click on the “Gospels in Nez Perce” for further description.
For more information or to arrange a free docent tour, contact Catherine Tkacz, independent scholar and guest curator of the exhibition, at (509) 484-5562 or via e-mail.