This is an open appeal to Christian Storytellers looking for new ideas: Come to California!!
In 1720 Alta California is a missionary's dream: Your Christian Government opens a portion of a continent untouched by white man, containing over a third of a million unreached but basically peaceful natives, to your faith for unfettered evangelization. Your denomination is experienced and well-financed, your government will provide transportation and initial protection. This is a culmination of over two-hundred years of prayer, all systems are go-for-launch.
1800 Missionary vindication: Fifty years after the start, the 21st mission is established, most are financially independent. Twenty-six thousand believers have been recorded as baptized. Natives are being trained in ministry and every form of European technology. Forty missionaries have died or been broken in the field of service, but 160 are in place and more are being trained at seminaries in Mexico.
1830 Missionary nightmare: Seventy-five years after the start, three quarters of God's precious converts (over 45,000) are dead or dying. The initial honeymoon between curious natives and Ardent evangelists has long since given way to jaded native workers and disillusioned Friars-forced-to-be administrators: tales of abuse, revolt and even native-abortions are yearly events. The current government lambasts the 'work camp conditions' of the missions, suck away their resources to support its underfunded structures, and talks of breaking up protected Mission lands for settlements. Within five years, all holdings will be seized by the government, all remaining converts dispersed without protection and the Christian faith will stand accused of the genocide of multiple native cultures.
In terms of shear scale, tragedy and pageantry, the 100year tale of California missions eclipses almost any other in the history of Christianity. It is a ripe field for not just one, or a dozen, but hundreds of Christian storytellers to reach multiple cultures in California. Romance, beauty and brutality, Knights and ladies and battles on horse back, feudal fiefdoms and wild Fandangos(dances); ...did I mention Pirates? Yes, Pirates! (No Ninjas, sorry*) are part of Christian California's history. Did I mention that the California Dept of Education mandates the teaching of Missions and different faiths to elementary school students. Yes! My wife is paid to teach the story of Christ to public school students.
I've been researching for an eventual online Graphic Novel:"Californios 1830" but I feel like the only kid at the beach. This is an All-call to Christian storytellers and artists: "Come to California!" From my surveys of the internet, the "His-stories" are ripe for harvest and no one is in field.
Surf California History, people!