ARTICLE & PHOTOS BY LYNNE TUCKER
(Spanish: La Misión de San Xavier del Bac) is a historic Spanish Catholic mission located about 10 miles (16 km) south of downtown Tucson, Arizona, on the Tohono O’odham Nation San Xavier Indian Reservation.
Built in the 1700s, this recently restored white adobe church, representing a wonderful example of Spanish colonial architecture, is beautiful inside and out, with colorful frescoes, sculptures and carvings.
Mission San Xavier del Bac is a church, school, and frequently visited tourist attraction in Tucson on the Tohono O’Odham San Xavier Indian Reservation.
The mission was named in 1692 by Padre Eusebio Kino for a pioneering Christian missionary and co-founder of the Society of Jesus (Jesuit Order), Francis Xavier.
Completed in 1797, the church has Mexican, Spanish, and Tohono O’odham influences. Dubbed the “white dove in the desert,” visitors come from near and far to see the ornate and detailed artwork, to learn about the history, and to admire the careful preservation.
The church is open from 9:00am to 4:00pm daily.
Free tours are typically offered Monday-Saturday starting at 9:30am until 1:00 pm when the church is not in use, but tours are currently on-hold. Be sure to call in advance to check availability.
Mass at Mission San Xavier del Bac
Masses are held outdoors at the inner courtyard of the Church and is limited to 25 attendees. Please call 520.294.2624 to reserve a place. All are welcome. Services typically last 45-60 minutes.
Please note the mass schedule:
- Saturday 5:00pm
- Sunday 10:00am and 11:30am
Visitor parking is available in a large dirt lot in front of the mission.
Admission is free. Donations are accepted.
If you wish to light a candle, please purchase one at the gift shop or in the museum foyer for $4.
Photography is permitted when Mass is not in session.
Face masks are required indoors.
Think Prayers and Pray for Peace, Health and Happiness for 2023!