Disrobing Junipero Serra – Discussion Panel

Discussing the International Ramifications of Junipero Serra’s Canonization on Indigenous Peoples.

On May 30, 2015  there was a public discussion on the Canonization of Junipero Serra and the true history of the California missions. This discussion panel was hosted by the Barbareño Chumash Tribal ’Iyalmuwič Council and The American Indian Movement of Southern California (AIM So-Cal).

The two organizations brought together some of the Indigenous community’s most notable academics and leaders to lead the two featured panels at The Unitarian Society of Santa Barbara in Santa Barbara.

The first panel discusses the International Ramifications of Canonization and how it will affect the entire Western Hemisphere. This discussion panel will expose Junipero Serra and the iconic California Mission system, which has long been held by the Catholic Church as a golden era storyline.

The second panel discusses Catholics and Christians who are against the Canonization of Junipero Serra, and how Junipero Serra’s impending sainthood should not be a “Natives vs. Catholic” issue. Panelists will discuss how sainthood is attained and how Serra met those requirements, as well how this situation involves historical trauma and self-determination.


“The Vatican’s decision to canonize Junipero Serra validates the genocide of California Indians. We cannot ever forget our ancestors, and the truth shall be heard. Our truth is our light of healing and moving toward self-determination,”

– Marcus Lopez Sr., of the Barbareño Chumash Tribal ’Iyalmuwič Council