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California Missions FoundationJuly 2014   



Looking back at the past eighteen months is a moment of great pride for the California Missions Foundation. With the help of our many supporters and partners, CMF was able to continue providing important assistance throughout the state to our California Missions and related historical sites.


Through the leadership of the board, more than 40 grants were issued this past year and a half by CMF to help with a variety of projects from earthquake strengthening, to adobe water damage repair, to archaeological studies, to historic painting and artifact restoration. The Foundation also continues to provide crucial funding for the All Aboard the Bus Program that sends elementary school students on important Mission field trips.


Since CMF's inception in 1998, relationships have been key to the success of this Foundation. Year after year, partner Foundations and individuals have stepped up to help our historic Missions and Presidios through the California Missions Foundation. We are grateful for the combined effort of so many. Details of our most recent grants can be found here in this newsletter.


CMF is dedicated to preserving the historical pieces of this important part of our history. We thank you for your support and continued interest in the Foundation, our California missions and their related historical sites. CMF has done a lot in 15 years, and together we can continue to provide this important assistance.


Kindest regards,















A half-million dollar matching grant from the Hearst Foundations to CMF will assist seven missions with important preservation projects over the next three years. The Grant equals the largest ever received by CMF in its 15-year history, according to Executive Director David A. Bolton, and comes at a crucial time for the missions.


"Now more than ever, the missions are in need of funding support as seismic retrofitting projects and important restoration efforts are popping up in all corners of the state," said Mr. Bolton. "CMF is honored that the Hearst Foundations continue to see the importance of our Foundation's work in assisting all of the California Missions and their related historical sites."


The CMF grant is the largest awarded this year by the Hearst Foundations for any California non-profit and the second largest on a national level.


Missions benefitting from the most recent Hearst grant include San Antonio de Padua, San Miguel, Soledad, Santa Barbara, Santa Ines, San Gabriel, and San Jose.


Projects covered in the grant range from seismic retrofitting to adobe moisture damage repair to humidifiers for artifact protection to original adobe wall preservation.


The first phases of the above projects are already underway.



ABOUT: The Hearst Foundations are national philanthropic resources for organizations working in the fields of culture, education, health and social services. The Hearst Foundations identify and fund outstanding nonprofits to ensure that people of all backgrounds in the United States have the opportunity to build healthy, productive and inspiring lives.

Mission San Miguel Guardian Father Max Hottie, OFM, gives a tour of the mission museum to CMF Board Member Carol Kenyon and Executive Director David A. Bolton.





For the third consecutive year, the S.D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation has awarded CMF a generous grant to assist with preservation work at seven historical mission sites. The locations benefitting from this important grant are Missions Santa Cruz, San Antonio de Padua, Soledad, and Santa Barbara, as well as State Parks at Missions Sonoma, La Purísima and Santa Cruz. 

Mission San Antonio de Padua





Continuing a long-standing association with CMF, the Brewster West Foundation recently awarded CMF a $25,000 grant for the Foundation's on-going efforts in helping mission preservation. The Brewster West Foundation has been an important CMF Preservation Partner for the past 11 years.





As CMF's All Aboard the Bus Program completes its 10th year, the well-received field trip program for fourth-graders recently received its first grant of 2014 -- a generous contribution from the Pebble Beach Company Foundation.


This past year, CMF was able to send hundreds of fourth grade students to their local mission to learn more about the history of the California Missions.


 "Partnering with other Foundations has again made this important learning experience possible," said CMF Executive Director David A. Bolton.


CMF Executive Director David A. Bolton instructs visiting fourth grade students at Mission San Antonio de Padua how to make traditional pozole - a stew-like dish that was served along the mission trail from San Diego to Sonoma.




The Annual Report of the California Missions Foundation for 2013 is now available. To view the CMF Annual Report, please click on the link below or contact the CMF office at 805.963.1633 to have a copy mailed to you.

Read the 2013 CMF Annual Report.







Following much anticipation, Old Mission Santa Barbara has a fresh new façade. During last year's retrofitting of the Mission's historic crypt below the altar rail, an emergency situation was discovered outside. Falling plaster and cement from the historic Mission's limestone façade posed a danger to parishioners below. Mission officials secured an emergency inclusion of necessary façade repairs into the SAT grant.


Evaluation revealed that the rebar reinforcements to the cornice and pediment had begun to rust, causing the corrosion of the façade. Those areas in which damage was most extensive were replaced. In order to repair the bell-tower domes flanking the Mission's façade, concrete reinforcement was used. In the process of reconstructive work done on the walls, workers noticed that the limestone had been cracked, so it was decided to extract, repair and reinstall the limestone, rather than merely re-pinning it.


In addition, the statue of Saint Barbara that overlooks the entrance to the Mission from a recess in the pediment had sustained age- and weather-related damage, and was in need of reinforcement and repair. Rusted eyebolts and a rusted turnbuckle anchoring the statue to the Mission's façade compromised its stability, and were in need of replacement. The final portion of this emergency project sought to repaint the façade with great attention given to the original coloring.


The restored Old Mission Santa Barbara façade was unveiled to the public earlier this year.


The next phase of the Mission's SAT Grant, set to begin in the fall of 2014, will be the resurfacing of the Convento Wing, where the original adobe walls have suffered extensive water damage.


The restored façade at Old Mission Santa Barbara.

Old Mission Santa Barbara Guardian Father Richard McManus makes a presentation to CMF Executive Director David A. Bolton recognizing the Foundation's work administering the on-going SAT Grant Program.


Franciscan Fathers Richard McManus, Charles Talley and Larry Gosselin blessed the restored Old Mission Santa Barbara façade during the dedication ceremony.




California Missions Foundation has opened its annual grant application window for both Missions and their related historical sites, as well as fourth grade schools wishing to participate in CMF's All Aboard the Bus Program.


Details regarding the application process and criteria can be found on the CMF web site, or by calling the CMF office at 805.963.1633.




The California Missions Foundation is pleased to offer a new way to show your support, by donating stock. When you donate stock to CMF you will not be responsible for paying taxes on said stock, however you will still receive full tax credit for the amount of the stock on the day you contribute. To donate please have your broker call UBS Financial Services at (201) 352-6300, with the following information:


Account Name: California Missions Foundation

DTCC Clearing Number: 0221

Account #: XN04920


As always please call Executive Director David A. Bolton at the CMF office with any questions at

(805) 963-1633.




You can help us to preserve California's historic missions and all their cultural treasures! 

Please call our office at (805) 963-1633 to donate by credit card, or click the button below to donate via PayPal!   


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About California Missions Foundation

Nothing defines California's heritage as significantly or emotionally as do the 21 missions that were founded along the coast from San Diego to Sonoma. Their beauty, stature, and character underlie the formation of California. All 21 missions are California Historical Landmarks; many have also been designated National Historic Landmarks. The missions are among the most popular tourist destinations in the state, attracting millions of visitors each year.

Founded in 1998, the California Missions Foundation was established with the objective of preserving and protecting the missions. The Foundation is the only statewide organization dedicated to the long-term preservation and restoration needs of all California missions and their associated historic and cultural resources for public benefit.

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