Archbishops urge California governor to save controversial statue of 18th-century priest

The monument to Father Junípero Serra has been in storage since it was toppled during a protest in the state capitol last summer

Two archbishops have asked California’s governor to stop efforts to permanently remove a statue of Father Junípero Serra from state’s capitol. The 18th century priest founded the California mission system, in which Native Americans were subjected to violence and forced labor.

Salvatore Cordileone, the San Francisco archbishop, and José Gomez, the archbishop of Los Angeles, pleaded with Gavin Newsom in an opinion piece for the Wall Street Journal to save the controversial statue of Serra.

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