Tuesday, February 24, 2009

San Gabriel Mission I

I love Missions. Part of living in California is familiarity with California Missions. When I lived in San Gabriel, I have always wanted to visit the Mission. Being busy with grad school, I had not had the chance to stop by and indulge the beauty of California history manifested through huge churches, cemeteries, living quarters, farms built together to support a community. Some of California Missions existed as hospitals, taking care of wounded soldiers fighting Spaniards off California. Missions were churches also; priests baptized American Indians into Christianity otherwise they were doomed as enemies, even demon possessed. When American Indians conceded, they became slaves of priests; those who refused were killed. (Does Christianity condone murder? How about if they have weapons of mass destruction? hmmm....) Inside a mission were markets where skilled men traded goods with buyers. Some had libraries, albeit books were expensive, to support the haughty and comfortable lifestyle of priests. Missions served many purposes. Today, missions are churches, wedding venues, historical sites, and cemeteries.

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