Tag Archives : california missions

Mission San Juan Capistrano – San Juan Capistrano, California


The fragrance of thousands of blooms fills the air, floating on a cool ocean breeze.  The ruins of a magnificent cathedral give proud testimony to a transforming faith.  Is this Greece?  Turkey?  Egypt?   No.  This is the coast of Southern California, and the ruins are the Great Stone Church of Mission San Juan Capistrano.    This journey was more like a family…

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La Purisima Mission State Historic Park, Lompoc, California


With vistas of rocky beaches, farms, sandy beaches, and ranches, the drive to La Purisima Mission State Historic Park from Los Angeles reminds me of everything I like about Southern California.  Entering the park itself is like stepping back in time.            Sheep and goats fill the corrals, turkeys gobble, and horses graze.  We look around for an Indian…

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mission san diego

Mission San Diego de Alcala – San Diego, California


First Mission, first cemetery, first martyr Mission San Diego was the location for all of these firsts in California.  Established on Presidio Hill on July 16, 1769, the mission was almost lost before it began.  After a difficult winter, the padres and soldiers were near starvation.  Fr. Serra enlisted the entire group to offer a novena to St. Joseph, the…

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