Tuesday, May 11, 2010
A mission to stitch
This armchair traveler has headed to California to once again follow the Mission Trail. My next project is an adaptation to needlepoint of Mission Santa Clara de Asis, eighth in the chain of 21 missions established by Franciscan missionaries along the coast of California.
Founded in 1777, the mission was the first to be dedicated in honor of a woman--St. Clare of Assisi, who also happens to be the patron saint of needlework. Originally established on the Guadalupe River, the church was moved to higher ground in 1781 due to floods, fires and earthquakes. Another earthquake in 1818 destroyed the structure, and a fifth church was dedicated in 1825.
In 1851, ownership of the church was transferred to the Jesuit order, who established on the site Santa Clara College, the first college in California. The whole structure was burned in a fire in 1925 and replaced in 1929. The church pictured here is today the chapel and centerpiece of the campus of Santa Clara University.