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Historia mexicana

versión On-line ISSN 2448-6531versión impresa ISSN 0185-0172


COELLO DE LA ROSA, Alexandre. Thte Weight of Salvation on the Frontiers of the Spanisht Empire: The Mariana Islands (1660-1672). Hist. mex. [online]. 2022, vol.71, n.3, pp.1103-1148.  Epub 13-Dic-2021. ISSN 2448-6531.

The majority of studies on the Jesuit priest Diego Luis de San Vitores (1627-1672) analyze his role as the founder of the mission in the Mariana Islands. Nevertheless, little has been written on his activities in Mexico and the Philippines, especially in terms of the internal conflicts within the Jesuit order in Mexico, which represented obstacles to a mission project in an archipelago of great strategic value in Asia and the Pacific. This article, principally based on primary and archival sources from Rome and Mexico, analyzes the reception of San Vitores’s mission project in the Philippines and New Spain. On the one hand, Father Miguel Solana (1668-1670), provincial superior of Manila, with the support of Archbishop Miguel de Poblete Casasola (1653-1667), supported the evangelization of the Mariana Islands following the Spanish withdrawal from Ternate, Mindanao and Jolo (1663). While the procurators and provincial superiors of New Spain were reluctant to collaborate, the Congregation of Saint Francis Xavier, and particularly its procurator, Father Joseph Vidal de Figueroa (1630-1703), defended San Vitores’s mission project tooth and nail. The mission’s final success should not just be understood as being due to the fervor and spiritual zeal of its founder, but also due to the need of the provincial superiors of the Philippines to defend the role of the Company of Jesus as the vanguard of Tridentine Catholicism on the frontiers of the Spanish Empire.

Palabras llave : Mariana Islands; Jesuits; Diego Luis de San Vitores; Philippines; 17th Century.

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