Churches Worth Driving To
Name of Church: San Carlos Cathedral
Address: 500 Church Street, Monterey, CA 93940
Phone number: (831) 373-2628
Mass times: Saturday vigil, 4 p.m. Sundays, 7:30, 9 & 10:30 a.m., noon, 5:30 p.m. Monday-Friday, 7:45 a.m. & 12:15 p.m. 8:15 a.m. rosary follows the morning Mass. Children’s Liturgy of the Word is held at the 9 & 10:30 a.m. Masses.
Confessions: Saturdays, 2:30 – 3 p.m. or by appointment.
Names of priests: Fr. Peter Crivello, rector/pastor. Fr. Patrick Dooling, associate pastor. Fr. Crivello grew up locally. In addition to serving as rector/pastor, he is also vicar general for the diocese. Hence, in addition to working at the parish, he is also immersed in diocesan-wide affairs. Fr. Crivello played an important role in the recent restoration of the old cathedral, including a seismic retrofit and conservation and preservation of the cathedral’s art. Fr. Dooling is a 60-something former pastor who is active at the parish. He is a talented homilist and a popular priest. He writes the weekly column for the parish bulletin (see the blog on the parish website, which is mostly made up of his writings), and does many of the weddings, funerals and sick calls.
School: Yes, K-8th grade.
Special groups: Catholic Daughters of the Americas, Christians in Commerce, Festa Italia & Italian Catholic Federation, docent society, Knights of Columbus, Legion of Mary, Our Lady of Guadalupe Society, St. Joseph’s Society.
Music: The 10:30 a.m. Sunday Mass has a choir; sometimes you’ll see the children’s choir at the 9 a.m. Other Masses might have a cantor accompanied by a musician.
Fellow parishioners: An English-speaking community.
Parking: Ample parking.
Cry room: No.
Additional observations: San Carlos is one of California’s historic churches. It was founded as a mission by Fr. Junipero Serra in 1770. The mission was moved a year later to Carmel, but the church remained as a chapel for soldiers of the Monterey presidio. The current sandstone church was completed in 1794. It is the oldest continuously functioning church in California as well as the state’s first stone church. It is a beautiful church, built in the Spanish colonial style. It was elevated to the status of a cathedral in 1849. It was dedicated as a national landmark in 1961. Herbert Hoover, who would later become President of the United States, was married there in 1899. (Hoover was Protestant, but since there was no minister available at the time, the parish priest was given a special dispensation to perform a civil ceremony.) There is a Heritage Center on-site, which is staffed by docents. The docents can take you on a tour, showing you the historic buildings, beautiful grounds, artifacts and old photos. Hours of the docents’ Heritage Center (subject to change) are Fridays 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Saturdays, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. and Sundays, 1 – 3 p.m. The beach is just a few blocks away, so take a stroll over and enjoy the ocean afterwards.
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