Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Tour of St. Michael's Mission - Part 1

This morning Cathy drove back to the Franciscan Mission in St. Michaels with Lee following in the truck. She took us on a tour of the Rectory and the church ending in the basement offices where she works as the Mission Archivist. Then we went to her quarters in a small building behind the old convent.

Cathy and Lee in the Dining Room in the Mission

Navajo Last Supper

One of the Guest Rooms
Cathy offered to let us stay in the Mission while we were there, however, we hate leaving our own bed and lugging stuff back and forth.  It is really easier for us to find a place nearby to stay so that we have all the comforts of home as they say.  They are nice guest rooms, however, and the BIG bathroom looked really inviting!

Cathy works at St. Michael's Mission as an Archivist. She has been here for several years but this is our first visit to the Mission. It is located on the western slopes of Black Creek Valley. St. Michael's was named after  Saint Michael from the convent name which was  St. Michael's Convent.  The convent existed on the site prior to the rest of the mission and has been occupied by Sisters until the last year or so. 

Small Chapel

St. Michael's Church

Cross beside the building

The Sanctuary in the Church

The Altar

Cathy at her desk in the Archives Area

Side of the Church

The Friar's Garden
Then we went to her quarters in a small building behind the old convent.
Cathy passing the old Convent

Cathy's Home at the Mission

The Franciscan mission was founded by Franciscans in the town of St. Michaels in 1898 at the invitation of Mother Drexel. This was to prepare for her founding of St. Michaels Convent, and St. Michaels Indian School in October 1902. St. Michaels Convent and school were established by Father Juvenal Schnorbus with Father Anslem Weber,  his assistant. The site was donated by the Reverent Mother Katharine Drexel, head of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament of Philadelphia, in 1898. Interestingly, Katharine Drexel was the niece of Anthony J. Drexel, the founder of Drexel University where Lee attended and received his graduate and Masters Degree in Civil Engineering.  

The mission was for many years the headquarters of Father Weber’s fight for Navajo lands. The Franciscans operate from here in general fieldwork with the Navajos.

We still had more touring of the mission to do but we decided that we had better get on our way to Canyon de Chelly so we'll return and finish this tour another time.

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