Friday, January 06, 2012

Another look at the Mission

 After my short treatise on old graffiti, I thought I'd share some images from the rest of my recent visit to Mission San Juan Capistrano. First of all, Sunday was the only time I can ever remember seeing people lined up outside, waiting to get in. The place was really busy, and people were actually waiting to pay their entrance fee. (Did you know they offer an annual pass? Just like Disneyland and Knott's!)
 I saw the new exhibit of Mission treasures that have long been stored out of view. The room was too dark to have much success with photography (since I'd never want to use a flash around priceless documents and artifacts). However, I did get the blurry shot above, of enormous candle sticks that were salvaged from the Great Stone Church after the earthquake of 1812. Also memorable were documents signed by Fr. Junipero Serra and Abraham Lincoln, and silver candlesticks that Serra himself brought north from Mexico when he first set out to establish a chain of Missions through Alta California. The baptismal shell used in the early days of the Mission was also pretty amazing.
 With thousand of burials on the Mission grounds, I wonder how they decided where to place some of the seemingly random white crosses and rings of stones that seem to mark specific graves. Of all the graves, I only saw two that were marked: Msgr. St. John O'Sullivan and Jose Antonio Yorba (seen above). I'd be curious to know how Yorba got such a modern looking stone, and how they figured out exactly where he was buried.
I thought you might also enjoy this photo of contrasting architectural styles. A girl named Katrina left her scratch-built adobe model atop the ruins of the Great Stone Church. (The bells in the background mark the spot where the bell tower stood, prior to the big earthquake.)


Gustavo Arellano said...

Isn't Yorba's marker a cenotaph?

Lizzy B. said...

Yes, the tombstone IS a cenopath! And the explanation for the "randomly placed white crosses" (along with Yorba's marker) and other very interesting facts are explained when you take their guided tour, which in my opinion is absolutely worth the $3 extra bucks! <3