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John McDougall

As the fur traders moved west into Rupert’s Land, establishing trading forts and missions the western regions stood at the threshold of massive white settlement. While this would become a great opportunity to expand the agricultural potential of the western region it had very negative effects on the native populations. The Methodists believed that it was necessary to help the Indian population to integrate, not by force but through Christianity, into a more European way of life. It was believed that if the natives could know Christianity they would learn to appreciate it and more willingly accept European values and eventually a European lifestyle. When John McDougall joined the Methodist Missionary service in 1864, he had been well prepared for such a position and knew this Methodist dictum well.