On September 26, 2015, Padre Junipero Serra joined the family of saints in a beautiful family celebration at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in
This beautiful event was celebrated by Pope
Francis in a fitting tribute to this holy friar. Much is already known of Padre Serra who was
ordained a priest in 1737 and eventually left his beloved homeland of Washington, D.C. Spain to serve in Mexico
and . He is most known for being the first Pastor
of California and establishing nine of the California Missions. California
There has been some controvesy of Padre Juniperso Serra being established as a saint in
thus, there is a need for people to have a greater understanding of this holy
friar and his great love for the people he served. It should be known that many times he was a
strong voice to fight the military leadership of the day on behalf of the
Indigious native people of America . He was a champion on providing the best ways
for the military to relate to the Indians.
He opposed the manner in which the military treated the Indians and
constantly stood up for them. California
In addition to the difficulties with the military of his day, Padre Serra with his friars, instructed the Indigious native people on building missions, farming, harvesting, working as a community and religion. He wanted them to be able to live an easier and more productive life and to know Christ and the great love of God. Padre Serra had a concern for their physical and spiritural well being. He and his friars guided them in living peaceful and holy lives. He cared much!
Padre Junipero Serra, now Saint Junipero Serra, is a perfect saint for all times and seasons in
America and especially in .
Following in the steps of Saint Francis of California Assisi,
Padre Serra lived his life as a peacemaker and built the church up through the
many missions in . His example of living a life of sacrifice and
the greatest of faith, to bring the people he served in union with a loving,
vibrant and giving God. After years of
many illnesses, a leg that never healed from an insect bite and various
physical aliments, Padre Serra passed away on August 28, 1784 at the San Carlos
Mission in California . With years of extensive research and
discernment by the Catholic Church he was beautified on September 25,
1988. His status as a saint complete on
September 26, 2015. Carmel
As the wisdom of Padre Junipero Serra was great in his life, left us reflect on his words which are timeless:
“Let us make use of time. Our steps should be in conformity with the vocation to which God has called us; let us work out our spiritual salvation with fear and trembling, and with a burning love and zeal seek for the salvation of our brethren and neighbors. And may all the glory be to our great God.”.
Let us also remember to live these words:
“Always go forward
Never turn back!”
Yes, Saint Junipero Serra who is now a saint for all seasons.
(Note, if you are considering a vocation to the priesthood please see