Annual High Mass at Mission Santa Clara, on the 189th Death Anniversary of Fr. Magin Catalá

At 6:30 p.m. on Friday, November 22, Canon Raphael Ueda, Rector of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Oratory in San José, will celebrate a Solemn High Mass for the Feast of St. Cecilia and lead prayers for the Canonization of Father Magin Catalá, O.F.M., at Mission Santa Clara on the Santa Clara University campus. Visiting Canon Jean-Marie Moreau will give the homily. The "California Mission Mass," a compilation of music originally composed for the converted native Americans to sing during the mission years, will be sung by the choir during the Mass. 

Father Catala is much less well known that Saint Junipero Serra, but he was highly revered during his lifetime and his death extremely lamented by the many natives who came to the Mission Santa Clara in the thirty-six years he labored there. Click here for a short introduction to Father Magin Catatlá's life.


Click either of the images above or below to view a printable PDF.


Every year for eleven years, a lay group of members of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Oratory in San Jose, CA, has sponsored a commemoration of Servant of God, Father Magin Catalá, at Mission Santa Clara, on a date as close as can be arranged to his death anniversary.  Father Catalá died 189 years ago, on November 22, 1830, after serving thirty-six at Mission Santa Clara.  He is not nearly as widely known as Saint Junipero Serra, who founded Santa Clara Mission, but he is still revered by many who have come by various means to know about him and to love him the same way the people of his time did, as the Holy Man of Santa Clara.

The lay group, along with interested priests, began by holding rosary processions from the nearby Oratory of Our Mother of Perpetual Help to Mission Santa Clara, which serves as the chapel for Santa Clara University. Eventually, the group received permission from the Jesuits who run the university to include a Traditional Latin Mass for the Feast of Saint Cecilia in their yearly commemoration. For the past four years, the Mass has been celebrated by Canon Raphael Ueda, rector of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Oratory. This year, Canon Ueda will celebrate a Solemn High Mass at the high altar. Visiting Canon Jean-Marie Moreau, who was the first institute priest to partake in the annual event will give the homily.

A prayer for Father Catalá's canonization will follow at the altar of the crucifix where Father Catalá was seen praying for long hours. Witnesses reported that Father Catalá levitated while praying and that the figure of Christ detached His arms from the crucifix and put His hands on Father Catalá's shoulders.

Prayer for Father Magin Catalá's Canonization

Granted an imprimatur by every bishop with jurisdiction over the mission since 1908.
O God, You sent Your holy servant, Father Magin Catalá, to preach Your gospel to Native Americans, and You inspired him to glorify Your holy name among them by the examplπe of his eminent virtues. We humbly ask You to honor Father Catalá on earth with the testimony of miracles performed through his intercession. Grant us by his merits all manner of blessings. Fill our minds with the light of Your truth that, walking always in the way of Your commandments, we may come to eternal union with You. We ask this through Christ our Lord.—Imprimatur + Patrick J. McGrath, Bishop of San Jose

The process for his canonization was initiated by Archbishop Alemany of San Francisco in 1882, testimonies were collected from those still alive who knew him, and necessary documents were submitted to Rome in 1909, but his cause has stalled since then.  Furthering the cause is now in the hands of the Franciscans, who plan to pursue it after certain matters associated with Saint Junipero Serra’s canonization are finalized.

Fifteen years ago, another unrelated group was separately drawn to start meeting every month at the mission to pray for Father Catalá's intercession and his canonization at the altar of the crucifix. The prayer group’s current meeting time is 5:30 p.m. on the last Friday of every month.

Everyone is invited to join the yearly Mass or the monthly prayer group either in person or in spirit.

For More Information

You can follow the Friends of Father Magin Catalá, OFM, the Holy Man of Santa Clara on Facebook. See also, the prayer group’s website.

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