When the priest is not sure that Kino believes what he has said about Kino being named for a great man, he tells Kino, “It is in the books.” Later, the doctor tells Kino that he has the knowledge necessary to be certain that Coyotito will recover from the scorpion sting, and Kino realizes that the doctor might be telling the truth.
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I think you already mentioned much of the answer. Kino is used to being treated as an irrelevance by people of social standing. This is partly how they are able to take advantage of Kino and his people. Kino desperately wants to help his son and will even suffer humiliation to help Coyotito get better.