Spring Concerts at San Xavier
(Above) The east tower of Mission San Xavier should soon receive a much-needed restoration thanks to a national grant award and a new conservation master plan. The old cement will be removed and replaced with coats of lime-washed plaster mixed with cactus juice. Photo by Mamta Popat / Arizona Daily Star

Towering task awaits conservators at San Xavier Mission

by Henry Brean, Feb 10, 2020  tucson.com

The White Dove of the Desert will soon glow even brighter. Mission San Xavier is set to undergo its biggest preservation project in more than a decade, thanks to a 2018 national grant award and a new conservation master plan now in the works.

Scaffolding could go up by late fall around the iconic church’s east tower, where workers will spend the next two years carefully removing and replacing problematic plaster around the structure’s centuries-old brick walls.

Spring Concerts at San Xavier

Mission San Xavier has inspired countless people across centuries since its foundations were laid in 1783.

This National Historic Landmark is a premier example of Mexican Baroque architecture and along with the majestic saguaro, is one of the most recognized icons in Arizona.

Today, this active Mission remains a working parish and the spiritual home for many Southern Arizonans. Host to tens of thousands of visitors annually from around the world, in October 2015, the Mission was named to the global World Monuments Fund “Watch” list that includes 50 cultural heritage sites in 36 countries that are at risk from the forces of nature and the impact of social, political and economic change.

Nonprofit Patronato San Xavier was founded by Southern Arizona community leaders in 1978 as a vehicle for conserving and preserving the Mission. Patronato funds and directs ethical conservation, conducts scientific research, and interprets the significance of Mission San Xavier del Bac, a National Historic Landmark in the community of Wa:k, part of the Tohono O’odham Nation. Patronato is a non-sectarian non-denominational 501(c)(3) and does not receive sustaining support from any government or religious organization.

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