Serra, Junípero

Serra, Junípero

biographical name

(born Nov. 24, 1713, Petra, Majorca, Spain—died Aug. 28, 1784, Carmel, Calif., New Spain) Spanish missionary. He was ordained a Franciscan priest in 1730 and worked as a missionary in Mexico (1750–67). When Spain began its occupation of Alta California (now California), he joined the expedition and in 1769 founded Mission San Diego. From 1770 to 1782 he founded eight more missions in California, thereby strengthening Spain's control of the area. His work earned him the title Apostle of California, and he was beatified in 1988.

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