A Sense of Mission: Historic Churches of the Southwest

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Chronicle Books, Jun 1, 2004 - Photography - 144 pages
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Visually beautiful and historically important, the Spanish missions of the United States are a unique legacy of two very different cultures. Conceived as an expression of the Catholic faith of the European conquerors, they were built and maintained by native Americans, who incorporated their own traditions. A Sense of Mission presents 29 of these fascinating and popular churches in Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, and Southern California. More than 150 color photographs feature dramatic exteriors and grounds, altarpieces, statues, carvings, frescoes, and other folk details. The text explores the history of the missions, how they were built, and the meaning behind their symbols, while an introduction by N. Scott Momaday lends insight from the Native American perspective. Visitor information, maps, and an annotated reading list round out this handsome, authoritative guide of more than a decade.

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User Review  - louparris - LibraryThing

On a recent trip to Tucson, we visited the San Xavier del Bac mission there. I realized that though I had been to many Texas missions, I did not have a good grasp of the overall mission system nor of the day-to-day life at a mission. This book filled some of the gaps. Read full review

A sense of mission: historic churches of the Southwest

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Wakely's photographs and Drain's writing beautifully portray the ruins and buildings of the Spanish missions of Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, and Southern California. The book includes visitor ... Read full review

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About the author (2004)

David Wakely is an architectural and travel photographer whose work has appeared widely. He lives in San Francisco.

Thomas A. Drain is an architect and former icon painter who holds a master's degree in theology.

N. Scott Momaday is a Kiowa Indian writer and the author of several books, including House Made of Dawn, for which he received the Pulitzer Prize.

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