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December 21, 1986 | MICHELE GRIMM and TOM GRIMM, The Grimms of Laguna Beach are authors of "Away for the Weekend," a travel guide to Southern California.
For travelers drawn to California's famed missions during the Christmas holidays, don't overlook Mission San Miguel Arcangel. That impressive reminder of Spanish times is just off the U.S. 101 freeway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Founded in 1797 as the 16th in the chain of 21 missions that extend from San Diego to Sonoma, San Miguel has the most striking church interior of them all. Its walls are decorated with colorful frescoes that have survived for 162 years.
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TRAVEL
December 21, 1986 | MICHELE GRIMM and TOM GRIMM, The Grimms of Laguna Beach are authors of "Away for the Weekend," a travel guide to Southern California.
For travelers drawn to California's famed missions during the Christmas holidays, don't overlook Mission San Miguel Arcangel. That impressive reminder of Spanish times is just off the U.S. 101 freeway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Founded in 1797 as the 16th in the chain of 21 missions that extend from San Diego to Sonoma, San Miguel has the most striking church interior of them all. Its walls are decorated with colorful frescoes that have survived for 162 years.
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OPINION
August 12, 2005
AS THE CALIFORNIA MISSIONS SHOW, our nation's history isn't always pretty, and it isn't always secular. So even though civil libertarians are understandably concerned about spending public money to renovate religious monuments, the missions should be among the handful of exceptions. Federal legislation passed last year appropriates $10 million in matching funds over five years to help restore the missions.
OPINION
May 16, 2006
WHILE OPPOSING FACTIONS carve their positions in stone, the cracked adobe walls of Mission San Miguel Arcangel gingerly stand their ground. One more large earthquake could topple them and their original 18th century frescoes, already fractured by the 2003 Paso Robles quake. It would take an estimated $15 million to save this pretty and historic mission, yet neither the Roman Catholic Church nor the state of California is willing to make even a significant down payment on repairs.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 11, 2006 | Steve Chawkins, Times Staff Writer
Since the San Simeon earthquake in 2003, the tottering old church at the mission in this tiny Central Coast town has been off-limits to just about everyone, including the congregation that used to worship in it. A chain-link fence seals off the entrance. Deep cracks scar the facade. Warning signs are everywhere. Officials fear the 6-foot-thick walls of California's most dilapidated mission could come tumbling down with the next tremor, destroying two centuries of art, artifacts and history.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 16, 2004 | John Johnson, Times Staff Writer
Walls pulled apart, statues broke into pieces and a crack appeared that runs the length of the church, but the state's most dilapidated mission, San Miguel Arcangel in Central California, surprised experts by surviving the Paso Robles earthquake Dec. 22. The estimated cost of repairing the mission, parts of which date to 1818, has doubled as a result of the 6.5 quake, and the very process of shoring up its walls could threaten the integrity of priceless wall paintings dating to 1824.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 7, 2003 | John Johnson, Times Staff Writer
Parishioners at the historic old mission in this rural Central California town are still talking about last year's Christmas Eve service. Not because of the priest's eloquence, but because of his derring-do. Father Larry Gosselin delivered the midnight Mass from the 182-year-old pulpit, raised about 10 feet above the chapel floor and up a creaky wood staircase that worshipers feared would give way at any moment.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 11, 2008 | Chloe Veltman, Special to The Times
Most California schoolchildren learn the basic facts about the state's mission history in the fourth grade. Established from 1769 to 1823 by Franciscan monks from Spain to spread the Roman Catholic faith among the area's Native American population, the series of strategic-religious outposts spanned 650 miles of California coastline, from San Diego to Sonoma, providing Spain with a powerful presence on the Pacific frontier.
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