Guiding Questions — The Missions Today
The Missions Today
1. What is the perception of Catholicism held by Native American groups today?
2. How did the mission system shape Native American cultures and societies in the present?
3. What is the current relationship between California Missions and Native Americans and have there been dialogue at any time addressing the past treatment of Native Americans that worked on the missions?
4. How do current events impact our historical memory?
5. How have the Missions influenced our culture today?
6. What relevance do the Missions have when discussing the American experience?
7. What influences, if any, from the Native Californians’ cultures can be seen in today’s society?
8. What roots of the Spanish colonial settlement of California are evident in today’s California society?
9. How do today’s citizens of this former Spanish colony differ from today’s citizens of former English colonies?
10. Describe the current relationship between California’s Native American populations and the Spanish Colonial Mission institutions. How would you characterize the nature of this relationship?
11. What influences, if any, from the Native Californians’ cultures can be seen in today’s society?
12. What lessons about humanity can we learn from teaching about the California mission system?
13. What are current relations like between Native American reservations and the missions (if any)?
14. Why study this time period in Californian history; how do we relate this information to today’s high school students?
15. What can today’s politicians/social theorists learn from the motivation for and creation of Spanish missions in the US?
16. How have native people responded to the recent apology given by the church to the native people at San Juan Bautista?
17. During a field trip with my students to Mission San Juan Capistrano, the docent assigned to us did not provide information on the treatment of the Native Americans at this particular mission. Is this common practice? How do the other missions, in operation today, treat this aspect of history?
18. How do the missions of California continue to influence life in modern America today?
19. How has the historiography or the telling of the Spanish missions/Native Californians encounter changed over time? How has it changed in California schools?
20. How many missions do the Catholic Church still own, and how do they impact society today?
21. How is history taught on the reservation and what reference books are used?