Sunday, April 9, 2017

                                                                                                  April 9, 2017

                                                              San Xavier Mission

San Xavier Mission
South of Tucson, Arizona

"Mission San Xavier del Bac is a historic Spanish Catholic mission located about 10 miles (16 km) south of downtown Tucson, Arizona, on the Tohono O'odham San Xavier Indian Reservation. It was founded in 1692 by Padre Eusebio Kino[1] in the center of a centuries-old Indian settlement of the Tohono O’odham (formerly known as Papago), located along the banks of the Santa Cruz River. The mission was named for Francis Xavier, a Christian missionary and co-founder of the Society of Jesus (Jesuit Order) in Europe. The mission was built at a site near the historic 1700 church first constructed here. This served the mission until being razed during an Apache raid in 1770.

"Detail of the facade on the front of the church/t The "rope" theme carries throughout the church."PY
"Today's Mission was built between 1783-1797; it is the oldest European structure in Arizona; the labor was provided by the O'odham.[1] Widely considered to be the finest example of Spanish Colonial architecture in the United States, it hosts some 200,000 visitors each year.

"Here is a close up of the painted door. — at San Xavier Mission Plaza." PY
"The site is also known in Tohono O'odham language as the “place where the water appears,” as there were once natural springs in the area.[4] The Santa Cruz River, once critical to the community's survival, now runs only part of the year.

"The wall is painted to create a bit of an optical illusion. Originally this was also painted on the floor. "PY
"The Mission is a pilgrimage site, with thousands visiting each year on foot[5] and on horseback, in what are called cabalgatas in Spanish.

"Not large, but incredibly beautiful. It has been called the Sistine Chapel of \North America." PY

Nickname(s)“The White Dove of the Desert”

"San Xavier Mission was established in 1692 by Father Eusebio Francisco Kino, founder of the chain of Spanish missions in the Sonoran Desert.
"The artwork above the Altar." PY
"San Xavier has an elegant white stucco Moorish-inspired exterior, with an ornately decorated entrance. Visitors entering the massive, carved mesquite-wood doors are often struck both by the coolness of the interior and the dazzling colors of the paintings, carvings, frescoes and statues. Its rich ornamentation displays a mixture of New Spain and Native American artistic motifs.
"Ceiling of the dome." PY
"The floor plan of the church resembles the classic Latin cross, with a main aisle separated from the sanctuary by the transept, which has chapels at either end. The dome above the transept is 52 feet (16 m) high, supported by arches and squinches. At least three different artists painted the artwork inside the church.[citation needed] It is considered by many to be the finest example of Spanish mission architecture in the United States.

"Beautifully intricate paintings. The coloured paint was either created from local plant pigment, or was shipped from Spain." PY
"The Mission was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1960.
"Angels and "rope" everywhere." PY
" San Xavier is still actively run by Franciscans, and continues to serve the Native community by which it was built. Widely considered to be the finest example of Spanish Colonial architecture in the United States, the Mission hosts some 200,000 visitors each year.[1] It is open to the public daily, except when being used for church services.

"More of the colourful artwork." PY
"The Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity, who have taught at the school since 1872, continue with their work and reside in the Mission convent.[1]
"The San Xavier Festival is held the evening of the Friday after Easter and features a torch-light parade of Tohono O’odham and Yaqui tribal members." (Link.)

Photos: Taken in March 2017 by Patricia Young (friend at St. Timothy's 
                 Anglican Church, North Vancouver) while traveling through 
                 the South West U.S.A.
Photo Comments: By Patricia Young.

God, be with persecuted Christians throughout the world. Amen (SW.)

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