A suspicious fire at Mission San Gabriel and a curiously incurious press, parroting the left's lies

One of the great California missions begun by St. Junipero Serra in 1771, Mission San Gabriel Archangel near Los Angeles, has burned almost to the ground. It was a 249-year-old church, as if California has a lot of those around, amounting to a huge destruction of the state's unique Spanish heritage. 

According to Catholic News Agency:

A massive fire devastated an eighteenth century mission church in San Gabriel, in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, July 11. Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles called the fire at San Gabriel Mission church, founded by St. Junipero Serra, “devastating.”

The fire began early Saturday morning around 4 a.m. and destroyed the roof and interior of the 249-year-old structure. Local firefighters said they responded to an initial alarm at 4:24. By the time they arrived, smoke and flames were visible from outside the church – which is a California Historical Landmark.



And it wasn't just a museum - it was a live church, a special one, for generations, marking weddings, funerals, communions, Easter processions, and more, beloved to anyone who ever grew up here as well as most who came since from another Spanish-heritage country. It was a place of peace and beauty and serenity, even for those who aren't Catholic. Every little kid in California gets a tour of the missions and gets to build one in clay as a rite of passage. 

To suggest there's nothing to be suspicious about, or ignore the possibility of leftist arson, is disingenuous.

Thus far, the press has not raised that possibility. In fact, they've generally ignored the story, except when they were running stories to take digs at the Missions.



Sure, they'll say it's important not to jump to conclusions, but to not raise a few questions for a loss this momentous is dereliction of duty ,given how big a target this Mission was.

Because here are some starter clues:

A statue of St. Junipero Serra, was toppled in another part of Los Angeles by leftist militants just three weeks ago. Another was toppled in San Francisco at the same time.

Mission San Gabriel itself removed its own statue of the saint (repeat: saint) presumably to keep it from being toppled, quite likely because of threats.

That wouldn't draw some curiosity from the press as whether there were threats, whether the people making the threats might believe the missions were totally deserving of destruction, and whether those same people might just be capable of vandalism? No questions for the militants?

Nope, just a lot of casual mendacious digs at the Mission, taken from the far-left's playbook, as if to lay the groundwork for the argument that some arson would be perfectly justified.

Look at this trashy editorializing casually embedded in a story purported to be fact from the Los Angeles Times, emphasis mine:

Founded by Franciscan Father Junipero Serra in 1771, the San Gabriel Mission has long been seen as an essential link to California’s past, as well as to the brutality and racism on which the state was founded.

The mission system destroyed the lives of Native Californians and in recent decades has deeply tarnished the image of Serra, the architect of the system who has long been considered one of California’s founding fathers. Serra was made a saint by the Catholic Church in 2015, fueling outrage from Native American activists and others.

or this from NBC:

But Serra's legacy remains a flashpoint for many Native Americans and Latinos who condemn the colonization and brutalization of Indigenous populations in the region.

There were many other examples.

But not a mention of the destruction the left has wrought in recent weeks, or its willingness to attack anything, knowing it will get away with it, and maybe, just maybe, the Mission might be next.



Which leaves a lot of people feeling suspicious. The press is repeating raw leftist lies about Serra, a tough little padre from Mallorca, Spain, who was toughest of all on himself. Serra walked to California from Mexico City with a wounded leg, and loved the Indians. Leftist lies say he was cruel but actual historic records say the opposite. His lifework was to help the Indians in the ways he knew best -- and he gave up a comfy earlier career in his middle age to do it. Serra was only happy when he was with the Indians, and he constantly fought with Spanish soldiers and bureaucrats who wanted to wipe out them out. The Catholic News Agency item above noted that Serra drew a gigantic funeral attended by Indians when he passed away. Abuses at missions did exist -- well after Serra was dead and buried.  Serra is also the only saint I can think of whose legacy includes a distinct and beautiful architectural style, the California Mission style, marrying Spanish and Indian motifs to create something widely imitated throughout the state, simply because it looks so right. And he left a string of huge cities on the West Coast which retain the names he gave them.

Padre Serra is the founding father of California and critically important for understanding the history of the United States, To attack him is to attack all of us. If the church was attacked, it was a distinctly evil attack on the face of California itself, and a vile robbery of all its future generations' heritage. The press is trying to cover the whole thing up, pretending nothing is happening, and leaving just a grease spot of far-left lies.

Image credit: Twitter screen shot

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