Tuesday, April 21, 2015

One Last Day in St. Augustine

Grounds of the Mission

Saturday was our last day in St. Augustine, and we had one more place to visit – The Mission El Nombre De Dios.

Mission El Nombre De Dios


On September 8, 1565, Pedro Menendez de Aviles landed at this spot and claimed the location for Spain and the Church.  Father Francisco Lopez de Mendoza Grajales, chaplain of the expedition, presented a cross to Menendez and celebrated the first parish mass at this same location.

The Great Cross, erected in 1966, stands 205 feet above the Matanzas River.



The impressive bronze statue of Father Francisco López de Mendoza Grajales, chaplain of Menéndez’s fleet; celebrant of the First Mass here; and first missionary, stands eleven feet tall.






We continued onto the grounds of the mission, walking among the numerous gravestones,     Old Headstones

and statues.



It’s a beautiful and peaceful cemetery,


with the Stations of the Cross along a walkway through the grounds.



The Rustic Altar is located in the spot where the first mass was held, and it still used for masses on special occasions.

Rustic Altar

The Chapel of Our Lady of La Leche



The present chapel is small and simple, holding approximately thirty persons, and reflects the Spanish mission style of the sixteenth century.  The chapel houses the statue of Our Lady of La Leche and is a special place of quiet prayer for those seeking Our Lady’s intercession.


The Chapel was beautiful, and a peaceful location for reflection and prayer.


Outside the Chapel is the burial site of several Sisters of St. Joseph, who came to St. Augustine after the Civil War to teach the newly-freed slaves.

Their Patron Saint, St. Joseph






Sisters' Burial Plot

We enjoyed our walk through the grounds of the mission – it’s a beautiful sanctuary in the middle of America’s oldest city.

From there, we had planned on going to mass at the Basilica, but we were over an hour early, so we drove down towards St. Augustine Beach to get a look at the beach on a sunny day.

On the way there, we checked the mass time at St. Anastasia on St. Augustine Beach, and it turned out that we were just in time to catch the 4pm mass.

We were pretty hungry by the time we got out of mass, so we decided to go with Carol’s recommendation and have dinner at the Salt Water Cowboys.     Salt Water Cowboys










We opted for a table inside, since dark clouds were moving in and it was looking like we were going to get some serious rain.


Our timing was great, as we were seated right away and our food came quickly.  By the time we left, there was a huge line outside, and the parking lot was overflowing.  Dinner was great – it was definitely a good choice!

Dinner at Salt Water Cowboys

We never did get to see the beach on a sunny day, but we couldn’t leave St. Augustine without driving down to one of the beach ramps.  Since it was evening, and with storms moving in, there was nobody collecting fees and we were able to drive onto the beach for a quick picture!

Checking out the beach ramp

On Sunday morning, we hitched up and moved north into Georgia – officially ending our winter 2015 season in Florida!

Blythe Island Regional Park

Site 74


It turned out that our location was just down the road from where our friends, Debbie & Ken, were staying with Debbie’s parents, and they invited us to join them for dinner.  We enjoyed a great meal, and another wonderful visit with our friends before they move north for the summer.  Thanks guys!


After one more overcast day, we were promised some sunny and nice weather!  We’re looking forward to it!


  1. Glad You're taking your time and following the warmth of the coast.
    We've had more rain than sun and now the temperature has taken a dive. We were hoping to bring some of that Florida warmth and sunshine with us.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

  2. As always, great post. It instills a longing to pack up and head to St. Augustine to personally experience the history of the place. Oh well, guess we will have to hang out here at Red Bay for a while longer.


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