Praise and THANKS to God for several things! I am grateful for my recovering health after a summer heart attack, for retrieving this web log about Padre Martinez, and for recent developments that are about to yield fruit. These include a documentary film about the Cura de Taos, a new history-biography of the Padre, and a new book about Taos that includes at least one essay on Padre Martinez.
I had a heart attack in mid August, on my way to Santa Fe for a meeting of scholars convoked by lawyer Michael Olivas (promoting the on-line digitalization of materials pertaining to Padre Martinez). My triple by-pass surgery at Presbyterian Hospital in Albuquerque was followed by a brief time of recuperation with relatives in Taos. I am now at Palm Springs, slowly getting better and beginning to do some writing. This is my first contribtion to the blog for too long a time.
Documentary film maker Paul Espinosa, with the help of various contributors, is revising a script for a film on Padre Martinez. His credits include US-MEXICAN WAR: 1846-1848, shown on PBS several years ago. In the new year, the script will be submitted to the National Endowment for the Humanities for production funding. The working title was the DAWNING OF LIBERTY, but is now called LIBERATNG OUR AMERICA.
Eminent Jesuit scholar of things New Mexican is putting finishing touches on a significant work on the LIFE AND TIMES OF PADRE MARTINEZ. Robert Torrez, a former state historian, will become general editor of the book. He has several collaborators, and the opus will likely be published as a one-volume English text of over 500 pages. It will include never-before published materials copiously annotated with interesting footnotes. The plan is that the work will include the following: 1840 Autobiography, 1867 Last Will and Testament, and 1877 Biography by Santiago Valdez. I expect that the University of New Mexico Press will publish the book by 2012, the centenniel of New Mexican Statehood. This would be appropriate in light of the fact that, in 1846, Padre Martinez became the first New Mexican to swear alligience as a citizen of the new territory belonging to the USA.
Corrina Santistevan, Doña Eufemia (award) recepient, is writing the last chapter of the new HISTORY OF TAOS whose publication she has been coordinating and promoting. As I understand, it is an anthology of essays. Corrina asked me to contribute the essay on the enegmatic role of Padre Martinez with the Penitentes.