Mission San Xavier, Tucson
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As you drive up to the Mission San Xavier, you will be awed by the sight of it! Massive and majestic, with its bright white walls, against the blue Arizona sky, the Mission San Xavier rises up out of the vast desert landscape of mesquite trees and sage bushes. It is made of kiln-baked bricks covered in white lime plaster. Inside, the church is decorated in every possible corner, and each time you visit you always see something you never noticed before. It remains a mystery who was the designer for the church and who adorned it inside with its paintings and sculptures.
We do know that it was built in 1783 by Franciscan priests on the land of an older 1692 mission. This church has had a long and interesting history. During the 1840s, at the time of the California Gold Rush, it was visited by many on their way to California, and they wrote their names on its walls. Though much of its life it was left empty, the local Indians took care to make sure it survived. Since 1863 it has become part of the Santa Fe diocese and restored. The church is located on an Indian reservation.
If you are hungry, buy some Indian fry bread, cooked by the local Papago tribe!
Mission San Xavier is 7 miles south of Tucson, at 1950 W. San Xavier Rd, Tucson 85746. Take Highway 10 to Highway 19 South and exit at the sign for Mission San Xavier del Bac.
Mass is held Tues-Fri at San Xavier at 8:30am and Sunday at 8:00am, 11:00am and 12:30pm. Sunday masses are one hour earlier during the summer, June to Sept.
There is also a museum. Entrance to both the church and the museum is free. The church is open for viewing daily 7am-5pm.
This is an interactive map, you can zoom and move it.
Overall Visitor Rating: Unrated.