English Narrative: John Williams’ Religious Account of the Deerfield Raid
Reverend John Williams’ narrative on the Deerfield raid (1704) is an informative account on what this experience entailed for him; although, while one may think that his narrative would be mostly focused on the actual raid and what occurred to him as a captive, the primary focus of Williams’ narrative was largely based on his views on Catholicism and his extreme hatred for this religion (pg. 91). In essence, most of his narrative was an anti-Catholicism rant describing how blasphemous the religion is and how though there was numerous opportunities to change his faith through forced measures while being a captive, he never faltered, choosing death over all else (pg. 91).
Williams lost much of his family and his life because of what occurred in Deerfield in 1704. While he lost a great part of his life, there was one aspect of it which remained constant, even throughout his captivity by the Indians and French: his religious values and beliefs. Through maintaining his faith, Williams continuously believed that it was through “God’s providence” and not through “[his] own efforts” that he was able to survive the long, treacherous journey and what occurred afterwards. Furthermore, whenever Williams received any “kindness and mercy by his captors” this was again due to “God’s providence” (pg.90). In Williams’ point of view, it appears as though God was his saviour through these dark times, and fortunately for him, God always keeps a watchful eye on his followers and those who he truly believes are worthy of God’s love and aid.
Williams does show a care for his wife and children; although, when he hears that his son, Samuel, has converted to the Catholic religion...
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...iven the “kind treatment which she received from every person in that party” (pg. 232). Although, despite being well-treated, Eunice still thought that what occurred at Deerfield was “a day of darkness” (pg. 233) and she waited for the day for when she would return to “her father and the rest of her family” (pg. 233). Like her father, Eunice did not blame God for what had happened to her and her family. In her eyes, God was justified in his actions and she should have faith in his actions (pg. 233). She continued to hold the same religious beliefs as her father up until she received baptism under the Jesuits (pg. 237). Consequently, through what she learned from the Jesuits, she was in a state of “ignorance” and did not know “right from wrong” and henceforth, continued to follow the “corruptions, both in doctrine and worship” that came with this new faith (pg. 239).
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