Sunday, November 4, 2012

Mission San Luis Rey de Francia - Oceanside, CA

Sometimes, we all need a bit of time traveling, need a small dose of our nation's past, even if only for a few hours on a Friday afternoon.  Fortunately for Southern California residents, Mission San Luis Rey de Francia is in easy driving distance and drips with an aura of an age which is not our own.

Simply pulling up the drive leading to the historic church is a transporting experience.  If you are lucky, when you walk into the church itself, you'll encounter the same or a similar friendly volunteer who will give you a brief history about Saint Louis. The mission was established in 1789 but named in honor of Louis IX, King of France (1226-1270).   Louis IX died while fighting in the crusades, and he is the only French monarch that has been venerated as a saint.

San Luis Rey The grounds features charming Spanish-style architecture, cactus of every shape a variety, and a peaceful and beautiful cemetery.  The church has an active congregation and is also a popular venue for weddings.

The visits is a fun little escape from the usual Friday 9-to-5, and leaves you with the reminder of how much the past has defined the details of our present.