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JuniperoSt. Junipero Serra was a Spanish priest and friar who traveled to Mexico City in 1750 to spread the word of God and convert the native peoples. Moving to the Spanish territory of Baja California 18 years later, the priest took over from the Jesuit missionaries who had been expelled by the government. From there, Fr. Junipero moved into Upper California, helping to found 21 missions and baptizing thousands of people. He established Christianity along the West Coast, and taught practical skills, agriculture, and crafts to the native population. Because of his missionary work and a life of great austerity and piety, Junipero was posthumously given the title Apostle of California.

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