Help the Claretians rebuild San Gabriel Mission

It is with great sadness that we announce the news that our historic Claretian parish, San Gabriel Mission in California, suffered a damaging fire early the morning of July 11th.

The church building, which was undergoing renovations to mark its upcoming 250th anniversary celebration, was severely damaged. Restoration and painting of all the interior walls had just been completed, as well as the installation of the refurbished pews, and the church was scheduled to reopen this past Saturday, July 18th. However, damage from fire, smoke, and water will now require restoration once again.

Thankfully, no Claretians, parish staff, or any of the nearly 80 firefighters from 12 agencies that fought the fire for almost three hours, sustained injury. And because the church was under renovation at the time, most of the historic paintings and artifacts were safe in storage. The fire, miraculously, also spared the altar and retablo. Fr. John Molyneux, former National Shrine of St. Jude Director and current Pastor and Local Superior at San Gabriel Mission, shared the sorrow, and hope, the San Gabriel community is feeling, “We are saddened, but not daunted. We are resurrection people.”

Your prayers and support for our San Gabriel Mission community are deeply appreciated. To learn more about San Gabriel Mission or donate to support the repair of this historic building, please visit this page.

The beautiful main entrance to the historical San Gabrial Mission church. From this site, priests went on to found the nearby Our Lady Queen of Angels Church in 1781, also now run by the Claretians. Thus, the Claretians now tend the two oldest buildings in southern California.