Jeff Smith 2 p.m., June 30
Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala’, California’s first church at 10818 San Diego Mission Road, founded by Father Junipero Serra in July of 1769, was originally built on Presidio Hill. It was relocated to its present site in 1774, near the Kuumeyay villages, where there was water and farmland. A year after completion, it was burned to the ground. In 1776, Father Serra returned to begin reconstruction, covering the church and mission buildings with adobe to protect them from future fires. The mission withstood many trials and transformations, including the Mexican Occupation and later, U.S. Calvary occupation. 50,000 acres of land were restored to the Church in 1862 by President Abraham Lincoln. Pope Paul VI declared the Mission Church a minor basilica in 1976.
Posted July 25, 2009