Book of Saints – Saint Isaac Jogues

detail of a Saint Isaac Jogues holy card, date unknown, artist unknownArticle

October 19

Isaac Jogues was born in France in 1607.

As a young Jesuit, Isaac, a man of learning, taught literature. He gave up that career to work among the Huron Indians in Canada. He wanted to lead the savage redskins to Christ.

Father Jogues and his companions suffered much and were always in danger of death. On an expedition to Quebec for supplies of medicine and food, Father Jogues and his companions were surrounded by a band of Iroquois. They were taken captives and tortured.

Later, he escaped and returned to France. Several of his fingers had been cut, chewed, or burnt off. Pope Urban VIII gave him permission to offer Mass with his mutilated hands: “It would be shameful that a martyr of Christ be not allowed to drink the blood of Christ.”

But his zeal led Father Jogues back to the Huron Indians. He was captured by a Mohawk war party, tomahawked and beheaded in a village near Albany, New York, in 1646. He and his companions were the first martyrs of North America.

MLA Citation

  • Father Lawrence George Lovasik, S.V.D.. “Saint Isaac Jogues”. Book of Saints. CatholicSaints.Info. 4 January 2019. Web. 19 September 2019. <>