(1) Five Wounds Church: Background

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Five Wounds in the Early 20th Century (Date Unkown). Courtesy of Portuguese Historical Museum

History :

Located at 1375 East Santa Clara Street in San Jose, CA (just off U.S. Highway 101) the Portuguese National Church of Five Wounds are the heart and soul of Little Portugal. On November 16, 1913, Portuguese residence of San Jose purchased the land to what became the site of Five Wounds. However, it was not until 1914 that the parish was created. In collaboration with Mr. Manuel Teixeira de Frietas, the Portuguese community asked Archbishop Patrick Riordan for the blessing to build a church. The blessing was given and in 1914 “we opened the house that today is the parish residence and the first bazaar in benefit of the church.” But in 1915, through a petition signed by the Portuguese residence of San Jose, the Archdiocese of San Francisco officially approved the parish as the National Church of Portuguese of Five Wounds. Timber and wood from the Portuguese Pavilion that was in display in the Panama Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco in 1915 was used to build the church.  The building material, which was brought over from Portugal to build the Portuguese Pavilion, was transported by wagon through the Camino Real. On the 15th of November “Msgr. Henrique A. Ribeiro celebrated the first mass as pastor of the new parish.”

Modern Context :

             Since its creation, Five Wounds has been an integral part of the Portuguese community. Although historically Five Wounds has been able to sustain dedicated pastors bilingual in both English and Portuguese who been willing to work with the community, during the 21st century the church has not been able to host a pastor that stays longer than two years. In early 2011, the church announced that the current Pastor Rev W. D. Morgan will be stepping down from his duties at Five Wounds because he feels like the Portuguese community is unhappy with his leadership. Currently, the church is experiencing a lack Portuguese culture; a decline in bilingual mass and community participation has caused the church to rethink its leadership. However, the community continues to support the church financially and hope for a better one.
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National Portuguese Church of Five Wounds

SEE CHURCH OF THE FIVE WOUNDS HERITAGE, REVITALIZATION AND SUSTAINABILITY PROPOSAL

Five Wounds Church Inteperative Plan

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About Five Wounds Church

University of California, Berkeley Anthropology Department

Posted on May 13, 2011, in Anthro136k-spring2011-UC-Berkeley, Anthro136kSp11, Five-Wounds-Church-San-Jose, Microhistories, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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