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Mission San Xavier del Bac - Tucson, AZ
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member philbeer
N 32° 06.418 W 111° 00.477
12S E 499249 N 3552292
Quick Description: Mission located southwest of Tucson in the San Xavier district of the Tohono O'odham Reservation.
Location: Arizona, United States
Date Posted: 7/17/2013 7:43:58 AM
Waymark Code: WMHJX9
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member QuesterMark
Views: 11

Long Description:
"Mission San Xavier del Bac is situated in the Santa Cruz Valley nine miles south of Tucson, Arizona. Framed in the warm browns of the surrounding hills and the violet shadows of more distant mountains, it rises, brilliantly white from the desert floor of dusty green mesquite and sage. The imposing dome and lofty towers, the rounded parapets and graceful spires etched against the vivid blue complete a skyline with a graceful enchantment. San Xavier del Bac Mission History

From the earliest times, the Tohono O'odham settlement in which the Mission is located was called Bac, "place where the water appears," because the Santa Cruz River, which ran underground for some distance, reappears on the surface nearby. The celebrated Jesuit missionary and explorer, Father Eusebio Francisco Kino, first visited Bac in 1692. Eight years later in 1700, Father Kino laid the foundations of the first church, some two miles north of the present site of the Mission. He named it San Xavier in honor of his chosen patron, St. Francis Xavier, the illustrious Jesuit "Apostle of the Indies."

In 1768, Fray Francisco Hermengildo Garces, a man of outstanding personality and prodigious accomplishments among all missionaries in Arizona, established his headquarters at San Xavier. From here this Franciscan Friar set forth on his many missionary explorations. Fr. Eusebio Kino

The present church was built from 1783 - 1797 by the Franciscan Fathers Juan Bautista Velderrain and Juan Bautista Llorenz. Little is know about the actual labor of the construction of the church, who was the architect, who were the artisans, but many believe it was the Tohono O'odham who fufilled these roles. Why the one tower was never completed is still a mystery, but hopefully one day this question will be answered.

San Xavier Mission is acclaimed by many to be the finest example of mission architecture in the United States. It is a graceful blend of Moorish, Byzantine and late Mexican Renaissance architecture, yet the blending is so complete it is hard to tell where one type begins and another ends.

The church is a series of domes and arches that create enclaves for themes of painting on the various walls, domes and rooms. The area behind the high altar is a dazzling gilt of colors. The wall paintings are all original, but over time have needed to be touched up. Time and the harsh desert weather have taken a toll on the the beauty that is within the church and the entire mission complex. Currently the church is going through an ongoing restoration that tries to clean, repair and preserve as much of the church as it can. Outside the church, the restoration is even more extensive, and for this we have the gracious donations of visitors, patrons and the Patronato.

After more than two hundred years, the Franciscan Friars are still here serving the needs of the faithful. San Xavier del Bac Mission is a fully functioning parish church within the Diocese of Tucson. It is a church that primarily serves the Tohono O'odham, but is open to all. "

The above quoted information was copied directly from the San Xavier Mission web page.
Waymark Poster's choice of medium: Pencil & Paper

Seating options: Lot's of area available in the open lot in front of the Mission

Waymark link (optional): [Web Link]

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Recent Visits/Logs:
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tugies visited Mission San Xavier del Bac - Tucson, AZ 12/12/2013 tugies visited it
Poehunters visited Mission San Xavier del Bac - Tucson, AZ 8/17/2013 Poehunters visited it
grandmabetsy visited Mission San Xavier del Bac - Tucson, AZ 8/16/2013 grandmabetsy visited it
philbeer visited Mission San Xavier del Bac - Tucson, AZ 8/5/2013 philbeer visited it

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