Mission Santa Cruz is located on Mission Plaza in Santa Cruz, California. The Roman Catholic Parish of Holy Cross is the home of Mission Santa Cruz, the 12th link in the chain of 21 historic Spanish Franciscan missions that stretch from San Diego to Sonoma. “Santa Cruz” means “Holy Cross” in Spanish.
The full Spanish name of the mission is “Misión la exaltación de la Santa Cruz,” named after a feast day in the Church calendar which occurs on September 14: The Exaltation of the Holy Cross, celebrating the Christian symbol of the cross on which Jesus was crucified.
Mission Santa Cruz was founded by Father Fermín Francisco de Lasuén (pronounced:Lah-SWEN), the successor of Father Junípero Serra. Since 1859 the mission site has been owned and operated by the Diocese of Monterey, now under the direction of Bishop Richard Garcia.
Holy Cross Church is a parish within the Diocese of Monterey. Our history of the mission is meant to be an educational tool for everyone interested in California Mission history. It is aimed especially at fourth-grade students and their teachers who are working on projects involving Mission Santa Cruz. We have made an effort to make the content visually stimulating to young readers. At the same time we hope that you find the text of our presentation clear, enjoyable, and informative. Your responses on how we can improve any aspect of our site are most welcome. Read more, starting with History of Mission Santa Cruz.
Have fun on your virtual tour of the historic, peaceful, and prayerful site of Mission Santa Cruz; if possible, come for a real visit as well. For more information, contact us at: 831-426-5686
Sister Betty Pedrazzi, Curator