Peregrine Chapel

As part of the Serra Chapel Conservation Project, work has continued to stabilize this historic structure.  A focus of the project was to restore the deteriorated interior paint finishes and improve lighting conditions within the interior of the Chapel.

View of the interior of the Serra Chapel prior to contract work.


In January of 2008, the Preservation Team removed all but one of the paintings and many of the pews within the Nave of the Serra Chapel to facilitate preservation efforts.  This allowed contractors easy access to the walls and ceiling to stabilize the interior finishes and install lighting. 

Peregrine Chapel

An interior view of the Nave during contract work. 

Preparations for the interior work within the Chapel provided the Preservation Team the opportunity to replace the ill-suited nails used to hang the paintings with more stable brackets that resist seismic movements.  The typical hanging method of hooking a wire or framing hook over a nail is problematic in seismic areas like California, as during an earthquake paintings often jump off these supports and sustain damage.  All the hanging artwork removed within the Serra Chapel was in danger of falling off the walls in the event of an earthquake.

Peregrine Chapel

Here a nail used to support one of the paintings is carefully extracted from the wall prior to the chapel being repainted.

After the wall finishes of the Chapel had been stabilized, re-hanging of the artwork could begin.  To ensure that all the paintings hung at relatively the same level, a rotary laser level was used to demark the hanging height for all the Stations of the Cross paintings. 

Peregrine Chapel

Here a laser target finder is held against a wall to locate the level line for pencil demarcation. 

Peregrine Chapel

Pictured here is the painting of Saint John of Capistrano flanked on either side by two Stations of the Cross paintings after re-hanging. 

Peregrine Chapel

A view of the interior of the Serra Chapel with the paintings and furnishings returned after contract work.      


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By mail, download donation form and mail with your gift:

Mission San Juan Capistrano Preservation Funds
26801 Ortega Hwy
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675

For questions, please call Barb Beier at (949) 234-1323 or email bbeier@missionsjc.com
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