SAINT JUNIPERO SERRA: MAKING SENSE OF THE HISTORY AND LEGACY
An important feature of the organization of the book is the author’s defense of Serra’s legacy. The author guides the reader through the process by explaining the valid historical method experts use to look honestly at Serra’s life and accomplishments, and his motivations.
. . . must-read for high school students in California’s Catholic schools.
Kathleen H. Aikenhead
President, William H. Hannon Foundation, Santa Monica, CA
. . . a deeply personal and moving account of his search for the real Serra.
Retired Archivist, Archdiocese of San Francisco
. . . easy to read and has good points about the political storm swirling around Fr Serra’s historical impact.
Sr. Teresa Christe
MSSR Theology Dept./Campus Ministry
Cardinal Newman High School, Santa Rosa, CA
. . . [it] will serve Catholic students well in courses like California History, American History as well as in Church History.
Rev. Thomas J. Elewaut
Pastor, San Buenaventura Mission, Ventura, CA
. . . destined to be a hit!
Former Superintendent of Schools, Archdiocese of San Francisco and Diocese of Orlando
. . . a helpful resource for people of faith of all ages to see the blessings of Serra’s witness to the Gospel life and what he can teach us today about effective evangelization.
Fr. Tommy King, O.F.M.
Former Pastor, Saint Boniface Church, San Francisco, CA (excerpt from foreword)
. . . most enjoyable and could very easily be used in the school setting.
Msgr. Sal Pilato
Superintendent of High Schools, Archdiocese of Los Angeles
“. . . a further confirmation of the friar’s dictum that ‘in California is my life and here I hope to die.’”
Msgr. Francis J. Weber
Archivist, Archdiocese of Los Angeles and author of Life and Times of Saint Junipero Serra and The California Missions
WHO WAS SAINT JUNIPERO SERRA?
When Pope Francis canonized Junípero Serra in 2015, he sought to point the Church’s eyes to a series of intersecting issues in the life of the Church – the centrality of evangelization at the heart of ecclesial life; the immense contribution which the Hispanic community in the United States has made to the life of the Church and the nation; and how Catholics understand their own history as a combination of apostolic zeal at times flawed by the distorted perspectives of every age. Christian Clifford has contributed to each of these themes in a readily understandable way in his book Who Was Saint Junípero Serra? Using narrative presentations to illustrate the perspectives of those who were influenced by Serra in his richly diverse contributions to the life of the Church in Spain, Mexico and modern day California, this book affectionately speaks to the many dimensions of the Serra experience as it continues to the present day.
Most Reverend Robert McElroy, Bishop of San Diego
Christian Clifford has made the story of Franciscan Saint Junípero Serra, OFM, come alive for a new generation of young people. With original illustrations that accompany the creative vignettes from the various vantage points of those Serra would have encountered during his life, this book captures the imagination and informs the mind. This is an excellent companion for students learning about Saint Junípero and the California Missions!
Daniel P. Horan, OFM
Catholic Theological Union (Chicago), and author, Francis of Assisi and the Future of Faith.
In his new book, Who Was Saint Junipero Serra?, author Christian Clifford provides readers with a thoughtful and very accessible look at not only the life of the Saint, but also the world in which he grew up and eventually came to evangelize. Through his excellent researching, the author allows the voices of others who were with the Mallorcan missionary to contribute to the fabric of the story, and helps the reader gain insight into the multiple sides of some of the controversies surrounding St. Junípero’s work. The structure of the book lends itself well to classroom study, but even readers who are not in school should appreciate this addition to the Saint Junipero Serra library. With nicely rendered illustrations by Kelsey Lansang.
Maureen Pratt, author of Don’t Panic!: How to Keep Going When the Going Gets Tough (Franciscan Media)
MEET PABLO TAC: INDIAN FROM THE FAR SHORES OF CALIFORNIA
The canonization of Junipero Serra in 2016 was no surprise. Its promoters expected it. Its detractors rejected it. Pablo Tac takes both groups by surprise. Mr. Clifford thinks he is a saint. Meet Pablo Tac invites thinking about the possibilities for the future. Give it a read.
Karl A. Kottman, Jr.
An empathetic and wise telling about one of those people we wish we knew so much more about. Christian Clifford does a good job telling this ultimately tragic story in a way accessible to a broad range of people from young adults to geezers like me.
Rick Kennedy, Ph.D.
San Diego, CA
A comprehensive and easy-to-read biography of Pablo Tac (1822-1841), a remarkable Luiseño Indian from California who lived a stellar life during the Mexican era. Tac’s childhood began at Mission San Luis Rey, and because of his intellectual abilities and religious inclinations, he graduated to higher education. He studied at San Fernando College, Mexico City, and then at Urban College, Rome, where he focused on becoming a missionary priest and met his untimely death as well.
The narrative clearly constructs his life and times with maps, charts, illustrations, a timeline, and study questions useful for general readers and students. It culminates with a discussion on saintliness, the canonization or declaration of holy people as saints by the Catholic Church and asks whether Tac is so worthy. This well-researched book draws extensively on writings by and about Tac and those church leaders who shaped his life, and it is supplemented with contextual details from noted scholars.
Mark G. Thiel, Archivist