The Making of the Sahale Stick (Catholic Ladder)
To teach the main truths of the faith to the Native Americans in this and other localities, Father Blanchet devised the ingenious method of what later became know as “The Catholic Ladder:. He made use of this ladder, drawn on strong yellow wrapping paper pasted on white cloth, at the Cowlitz Mission in July of 1842. Copies were made and given to Indian chiefs and was in constant use among the Indians all over the Northwest. From the Bottom: The 40 horizontal bars represent the 40 centuries B.C. The 33 dots represent the years of Christ’s life on earth. The 18 bars represent the 18 centuries A.D. and the 42 dots represent the 42 succeeding years.
In the woods.
The cleaning process.
Drawing out the design
Cutting out the design.
Painting the design.
Making of the base.
The finished Ladder with Joel Huckins as the woodworker and artist behind the creation of the Ladder now visible in the Piazza of the Proto-Cathedral by the Rectory entrance, Joel is the brother of Donna Kangas, who is a parishioner at the Proto-Cathedral.
Please visit the ‘Catholic Ladder” in the Piazza. This gift, carved by Joel Huckins, brother of parishioner, Donna Kangas, is here for us to enjoy. The 60 year-old log was donated by Phil Layman, who planted the tree with his grandfather when he was a boy in Elsie, Oregon. We hope all can learn from and appreciate our benefactors from then to now and in the future. Let’s keep them in our prayers.