Character Analysis Padre Gallegos, Fray Baltazar Montoya, Padre Marino Lucero, and Antonio Joseph Martinez


Although the Roman Catholic faith is inspired by divine will, it is administered by humans who are inherently fallen from divine grace. Some fulfill their church duties with dignity, while others@ — such as these four men@ — succumb to temptations of personal glory and hedonism.

Gallegos is a gambler and dancer who believes that a well-wrought performance at the altar excuses his vices; Montoya becomes a tyrant who finally meets his comeuppance when the Indians throw him from a cliff after Montoya loses his temper and accidentally kills a houseboy; Lucero hoards money; and Martinez is duplicitous in his dealings with the Indians by orchestrating the Bent massacre for his own gains. He covets large landholdings and is a lustful man who has fathered several children and is believed to have committed rape.