Cathedral of San Carlos Borromeo


Am not religious but I spend a great deal of time visiting churches anywhere I go. Preferably the old ones. The older the better and with history. And mostly Roman Catholic ones as I consider the subject of religion very personal; I just don’t feel comfortable in other churches unless invited by a parishioner, as I would feel am there only out of curiosity.

During my last vacation in Northern California, I told my friend that I would like to add some numbers to my list of Mission Churches that I’ve been to. I’ve seen a number of them in SoCal and this would be a great opportunity to see the ones in that part of the country.

From Wikipedia:

The Cathedral of San Carlos Borromeo, also known as the Royal Presidio Chapel, is a Roman Catholic cathedral located in Monterey, California, United States. The cathedral is the oldest continuously operating parish and the oldest stone building in California. It was built in 1794 making it the oldest (and smallest) serving cathedral along with St. Louis Cathedral in New Orleans, Louisiana. It is the only existing presidio chapel in California and the only existing building in the original Monterey Presidio.

In 2006, the church underwent major renovation and was finished in 2009. Attached are additional photos of the interior and exterior of the church. Click on the photo to enlarge the image.

I have added 4 to my list, Sta. Cruz, Soledad, San Juan de Baptista and Carmel. Although the Monterey Cathedral is not considered a Mission Church anymore, this is where the Carmel Mission started. So one rainy morning my friend dropped me off in front of the church before she went to work and I was able to attend the early morning mass.

The church was founded by the Franciscan Father Junípero Serra as the chapel of Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo on June 3, 1770. Father Serra first established the original mission in Monterey at this location on June 3, 1770, near the native village of Tamo. However, Father Serra became engaged in a heated power struggle with Military Governor Pedro Fages, who was headquartered at the Presidio of Monterey and served as governor of Alta California between 1770 and 1774.[4] Serra decided to move the mission away from the Presidio, and in May, 1771, the Spanish viceroy approved Serra’s petition to relocate the mission to its current location near the mouth of the Carmel River and the present-day town of Carmel-by-the-Sea, California.[

This is my entry to Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge for the Week: Religious Buildings. Go here to join or view more.

This entry was posted in California, Churches, Photo Challenge, Vacation and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Cathedral of San Carlos Borromeo

  1. Sue Slaght says:

    Wonderful to explore these churches. I too am not religious but love investigating.


  2. bebs1 says:

    Oh love old churches. They are more elaborate and artistically done. The contemporary ones are too simple for my taste.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. restlessjo says:

    What a wonderful place to attend mass, Bebs. So colourful inside but my favourite shot is that wooden doorway. 🙂


  4. bebs1 says:

    They have interesting doors. That main door has the European and Mexican influences, don’t you think? Flanking the church is this doorway:

    Liked by 1 person

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