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Mota, A. Teixeira da (Avelino Teixeira); Hair, P. E. H. (Paul Edward Hedley) / Jesuit documents on the Guinea of Cape Verde and the Cape Verde Islands, 1585-1617: in English translation

25,   pp. [unnumbered]-4 ff.

Page 2

convenient vegetable garden within our residence, which is useful for
what it provides as well as for recreation, and have sufficient
accommodation in the best part of the city, we do not get so fatigued
when we come from confessions, having the church at hand. And if it
had, or rather had had, eight of the sea and had not been so hemmed in
with rocky ravines, here it would have been possible (?) to found the
College which His Majesty has sent word to the governor of the island,
by the latest caravel, that he is to establish, giving us what is
necessary to support twelve members of the Society.
All this Father Manoel Alvares was unable to witness, for nine days
after our arrival he left by sea, with Brother Pero Fernandes, for the
Rio Grande, on a well-appointed frigate. He had a great desire to
convert many souls in those parts, and to assist the progress of what
had already been achieved by Father Baltesar Barreira. To date we have
had no news of the latter because there have been no ships, but we hope
that he will reach us, in good health, on the next ship to arrive. He
is leaving his companions in that place, in order to take charge, here
in this island, of matters relating to the college. For it seems to
them there, as it does to us here, that we should accept what the king
offers us, on account of the quantity of spiritual fruit which we can
hope-to gather from this activity f    which is daily being observed in
many aspects which cannot be put into writing.
As regards the spiritual life, we are endeavouring to carry out
all the duties which the Society regularly undertakes. An island named
Maio lies near here and a canon of this /f.91/ diocese is required to
visit it each Lent, to justify the stipend he receives for this duty.
The people there have been without a confessor for two years and,
although I had it in mind, there was such delay in fulfilling the
requirement that I learned that this year all of them would still be
unable to make a confession. It happened that a vessel was being got
ready to go to this island and to those islands further to the windward.
I asked the master and the pilot to take me secretly with them, which
they much approved, and they immediately acquired the necessary
provisions for my journey at their own cost. (But) when I went to the
ship with the intention of visiting these islands and of leaving my
companions on shore to deal with the local confessions, it being Holy
Week, I was unable to do this sufficiently secretly for the captain
not to find out, and he left with such speed that, not only was I left
behind but a canon went aboard and travelled to that island to confess
the people, which he would not have done if I had not(been prepared)
to expose myself to danger. Our Lord willed that the canon who had


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