Many know the story of Pocahontas from the popular Disney movie, but before this important Native American princess hit the big screen, she was very present at Christ and St. Luke’s.
In our Selden Chapel (also known as the Lady Chapel, because it is dedicated to the Virgin Mary), there are seven stone statues at the Altar. Mary is at the center, flanked by six important women. One of these women is Pocahontas, depicted with traditional tribal dress, braided hair adorned with a feather, and flowers in her hand.
Pocahontas, the daughter of Chief Powhatan, is credited with saving Captain John Smith’s life in 1608, after pleading with her father to spare the colonial settler. She is said to be the first Native American who converted to Christianity in the New World.
Our proximity to Jamestown and the Parish’s founding in 1637 gave the church builders two convincing reasons to memorialize Pocahontas in our Chapel. Next time you are in the Lady Chapel, gaze up to Pocahontas and remember her significance in both Christian and American history.