|Petra is an agricultural town in the center of the island of Majorca, in the county of Pla de Mallorca (the plain of Majorca). This small town of less than 3,000 inhabitants, is mainly dedicated to the cultivation of cereals, but it is trying to develop viticulture.|
This sleepy town, away from the tourist, is best known for being the birthplace of a famous missionary, evangelist of Upper California, Brother Juníper Serra.
|Etymology and toponymy|
|Petra - which means "stone" in Latin - bears on its arms the papal tiara and keys of St. Peter (Petrus Sanctus), illustrating the words of the Gospel "Tu es Petrus et super hanc petram aedificabo ecclesiam meam" (You’re Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church).|
Under the Moorish occupation, Petra was named Bitra and was part of the Yuz-Yiynau Bitra, which included Sineu, Lloret de Vistalegre, Sant Joan, Petra, Ariany and Vilafranca de Bonany.
The people of Petra is called the "petrers".
|The town of Petra adjacent municipalities of Santa Margalida in the north, Ariany north-northeast, Artà northeast, Sant Llorenç des Cardassar east, Manacor southeast, Vilafranca de Bonany south, Sant Joan southwest and Sineu northwest.|
Until 1982, the municipality of Ariany was part of the municipality of Petra.
The city of Petra is located on the railway line of iron Inca to Manacor, and has a railway station.
By road Ma-3320, Petra is 12 km away from Manacor, by road Ma-15 and Ma-3220, by Montuïri and Sant Joan, it is distant 50 km from the capital, Palma.
|The birthplace of Fra Juníper Serra is a quiet town, with streets intersecting at right angles, which is lined with old stone houses of golden sandstone (marès), but Petra has several monuments worth visiting:|
1. Birthplace of Juníper Serra
2. Juníper Serra Museum
3. St. Bernardine Monastery
4. St. Peter’s Church
5. Monument to Brother Juníper Serra
6. City Hall
|The St. Peter’s Church (Església de Sant Pere / Iglesia de San Pedro)|
|The parish church of St. Peter is the northwestern outskirts of Petra. The first parish church, already named St. Peter, was in the historic heart of the city, the district Barracar at the place called "la Rectoria Vella" (the Old Rectory), this first church was mentioned in 1248 in a papal bull of Pope Innocent IV, under the name of Sancti Petri of Petra. The second church of St. Peter was the same location as the present church.|
The construction of the Church of St. Peter lay on the sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: it began in 1583, but the church was consecrated in 1730 and completed in 1766, 180 years later, the construction the three sections closest to the main entrance arch. The building is in late Gothic style, it would even last gothic building Mallorca.
The frontispiece is divided into five sections separated by cornices, with a large rose window in the upper sections, the façade is crowned by a balustrade, on the sides there are two volumes of octagonal section, which simulate towers embedded. The main door of the facade is unfinished.
|The upper part of the side walls includes seven large semicircular arches that connect the buttresses supporting the roof of the nave. The south side door, built in 1911, was made by the sculptor Guillem Galmés, its tympanum contains an effigy of St. Praxedes, the patron saint of the city.|
The tower, built in 1669, is behind the apse has a height of 31 meters and is divided into six sections separated by cornices, the top three sections include mullioned windows, the roof of the tower is shaped pyramid.
|Near the south side door, outside the church is a plaque commemorating the baptism of Josep Miquel Serra i Ferrer, the future Blessed Juníper Serra. Juníper Serra was baptized in this church in 1713, when the building was not yet complete, he received confirmation later. It can be seen inside the church, the baptismal font where he was baptized.|
|Al venerable Fray Junípero Serra|
Apóstol de Cristo, nacido a la luz de España en Petra de Mallorca, explorador, misionero, héroe, civilizador de las tierras de California amorosamente ligadas a la hispanidad con su cordón seráfico
Bautizado en esta iglesia el 24.XII.1713
El Consejo Superior de Misiones
D. O. S.
|The venerable Brother Juníper Serra|
Apostle of Christ, born in the light of Spain Petra Majorca, explorer, missionary hero, civilizing land of California lovingly related Hispanity by Seraphic cord
Baptized in this church 24.XII.1713
The Superior Council of Missions
|The interior of the church of St. Peter is a single nave divided into seven sections, each covered by a ceiling vault. On the sides of the nave are chapels opening by pointed arches.|
The choir is polygonal, the altar is decorated with an altarpiece dating from 1790, led by an effigy of St. Peter, this altarpiece comes from the Monastery of St. Dominique de Palma, destroyed in the nineteenth century. Besides the choir are the baptismal font where Juníper Serra was baptized in 1713, these font, octagonal, date from 1588 and were made by Joan Antic and Miquel Abraham. In the apse is a Gothic chapel. On both sides of the altar are two small doors Renaissance.
The interior consists of seven side chapels on the left: the chapel of the Blessed Juníper Serra, St. Joseph’s Chapel (Sant Josep), with a baroque altarpiece Gaspar Homs, the Chapel of the Holy Christ of Souls (Sant Crist de les Ànimes), the Rosary Chapel (Roser), Baroque, consecrated in 1689, with a dome divided into eight segments and a Baroque altarpiece designed by Gaspar Ribas, this altarpiece is dominated by the image of the Mare de Déu del Roser, a Melcior Guasp work. The Chapel of the Immaculate (La Immaculada), with an effigy made by Guillem Galmés, St. Anne chapel (Santa Anna), which contains a polychrome bas-relief of the fifteenth century, and an array of Blessed Juníper Serra, where he is represented preaching to crowds, under the table, we can see a shrine which houses a small piece of bone Blessed Junipero. The Chapel of the Sacred Heart, with an effigy which is also a sculptor Galmés.
The right side has six chapels and the south side door: the Chapel of St. Cosmas and St. Damian (Sant Cosme i Sant Damià), with a Gothic painting on wood, representing the saints, and the Chapel of St. Barbara (Santa Barbara); the chapel of St. Anthony Abbot (Sant Antoni Abat), the side door with the organ above, which dates from 1608, a work Caimari brothers chapel Our Lady of Sorrows (Mare de Déu dels Dolors), with an effigy made by Guillem Galmés, the St. Praxedes (Santa Praxedis), patron saint of the city, and the Chapel of St. Sebastian (Sant Sebastià), with a Mannerist altarpiece dated 1603, which, in addition to the image the saint, contains two tables that represent Cabrit and Bassa, defenders of the Alaró castle.
|The Presbytery (Rectoria / Rectoria)|
|The rectory is located in front of the main door of the parish church of St. Peter. It dates from 1570 but has been renovated many times over the years. The building has two floors, a ground floor and a mezzanine floor. The main door is an arch. On the front, to the left of the door, a bas-relief of Sant Vicenç Ferrer, who preached at Petra in 1413 can be seen. To the right of the door is a bas-relief of Juníper Serra.|
Before the presbytery is a monument to the "Pagesa" (The Peasant), a sculpture by Josep Font Gayà.
|The Monastery of St. Bernardine (Convent de Sant Bernardí / Convento de San Bernardino)|
| Since the Church of St. Peter is reached Monastery of St. Bernardine along the street until you reach number 76 General Franco, Carrer General Franco starts in front of the south side door of the parish church.|
The Monastery of St. Bernardine of Siena (Sant Bernadí de Siena / San Bernardino de Siena) Petra has its origins in 1607, when the city Jurors asked the Franciscans settled in Petra to rescue the sick and teaching children. The first church was built at the location corresponding to the present chapel of Bethlehem. From 1657 to 1677, the Franciscans raised the current St. Bernardine Church, under the project management of master Oliver Francesc, the church was consecrated in November 1672. At the end of the seventeenth century, the monastery and most of the convent buildings were completed.
The monastery’s mission was to serve as a novitiate and educational institution of the Order of Friars Minor (OFM). It is in this convent, in the first half of the eighteenth century, began studying the future Fra Juníper Serra, apostle and civilizing of Alta California. In 1751, the monastery was converted into a retirement home.
The Franciscans lived in peace in the monastery of St. Bernardine until 1835, when they were expelled following the policy of confiscation of part of the church property (Desamortización Eclesiástica) by the anticlerical government financial worshiper of Mammon, Mendizábal. At that time, there still lived eighteen Franciscan friars. The buildings were auctioned, buyers were required to destroy any sign indicating the original destination of the buildings. The convent and cloister were divided to build housing.
In 1876, the church was reopened to the faithful, and in 1878, the presence of religious orders was licensed in Spain again. In 1900, the City Council gave the Church of Petra, the sacristy and the library to the bishopric of Palma. In 1969 two Franciscan friars came to the monastery - very small size - Petra: it happened 134 years since the expulsion of the Franciscans of Petra. The monastery now depends on the Franciscan province of Valencia, as the Franciscan province of Mallorca has disappeared.
The Saint Bernard is Renaissance, the main facade has a portal with arch and the porch is covered by a coffered ceiling, and on the sides, two niches formerly occupied by statues of Franciscan saints we see, now extinct. To the left of the façade stands the bell tower of square plan.
The interior has a nave with a barrel vault ceiling and six side chapels open an arch. The choir houses an altarpiece from 1721, dominated by the statue of the Immaculate, on the sides of the altar are statues of St. John of Capistrano (Sant Joan de Capistrano) and St. James de la Marche (Sant Jaume de la Marca), at the top, there is the statue of St. Bernardine (Sant Bernadí), holder of the church.
|The Birthplace of Brother Juniper Serra (Casa Natal de Fra Juníper Serra / Casa Natal de Fray Junipero Serra)|
|The birthplace of Juníper Serra (born in 1713) is located in the district of Barracar Alt, the oldest part of Petra.|
It is a humble farmhouse built in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
The house has two floors and retains the typical setting of the houses in the area of Pla de Mallorca, with an arched door that divides the house into two main parts.
|Furniture and tools of the time Juníper Serra are exposed in the home, and a press used to make wine.|
The house and the museum is managed by the "Association of Friends of Father Serra" (Societat d’Amics del Pare Serra / Asociacion de amigos de Fray Junipero Serra).
|The Juniper Serra Museum (Museu Juníper Serra / Junipero Serra Museum)|
|The Museum Brother Juníper Serra is located at the intersection of Carrer de Barracar Alt and Carrer Fra Juníper Serra, about ten yards to the right of the birthplace of Juníper Serra.|
The museum building was built in 1959 by the Association of Friends of Father Serra in a traditional Majorcan style. In the garden which is crossed by entering the museum, there is a bell, the bell comes from the Santa Barbara del Camino Real Mission (California), which is a replica of those Juníper Serra used in missions.
|Under the canopy roof, various plaques were put to the anniversaries of the birth and death of Brother Serra. The ground floor and the first floor is devoted to the life and work of Blessed Juníper Serra. The museum has many paintings, bas-reliefs, engravings, medals, sculptures and photographs illustrating the evangelization of the Indians of Upper California. On the stairs, a painting by Juan Miralles is the foundation and the first Mass of the San Carlos Mission in Monterrey.|
On the first floor is the lounge acts, decorated with paintings of characters, most of the time Juníper Serra.
|Visit the museum in the absence a sign indicates a nearby house where you can ask for the keys.|
Address: Carrer del Barracar Alt, 15
Hours: year-round, Monday to Sunday.
It is best to make an appointment.
Phone: 00 34 971 561 149
Entry fee: according to the Franciscan tradition, admission is free, but donations are appreciated.
|Street Brother Juniper Serra (Carrer de Fra Juníper Serra / Calle de Fray Junipero Serra)|
|Brother Juníper Serra street extends from the Convent of St. Bernardine to the museum. The street is decorated with panels painted tiles (azulejos) describe the founding of nine missions founded by personally Juníper Serra in High California (Alta California) Mexican, some of which have now become major cities of US California. These panels were affixed at the second bicentenary of the death of Brother Serra in 1984.|
A final panel discusses five missions based in the Sierra Gorda in the province of Querétaro in central Mexico: Santa María del Agua de Landa, Nuestra Señora de la Luz Tancoyol, Santiago de Jalpan, San Miguel Concá and San Francisco del Valle de Tilaco. The foundation of these missions is also attributed to Juníper Serra.
|Misión San Diego de Alcala (16 July 1769), the first mission founded by Father Serra, today near the city of San Diego.||Misión San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo (3 June 1771), the second mission today in Carmel.||Misión San Antonio de Padua (14 July 1771), the third mission today near Monterey.|
|Misión San Gabriel Arcángel (8 September 1771), the fourth mission today in the city of San Gabriel.||Misión San Luis Obispo de Tolosa (1 September 1772), the fifth mission today in the city of the same name, San Luis Obispo.||Misión San Francisco de Asís (9 October 1776), the sixth mission founded by Brother today in San Francisco.|
|Misión San Juan Capistrano (1 November 1776), the seventh mission today in the city that still bears that name, located between Los Angeles and San Diego.||Misión Santa Clara de Asís (12 January 1777), the eighth mission today in Santa Clara.||Misión San Buenaventura (31 March 1782), the last mission founded by Brother, today near the present city of Ventura.|
|Square Brother Juniper Serra (Plaça Fra Juníper Serra / Plaza de Fray Junipero Serra)|
|In 1892 the Plaça de la Constitució was renamed Plaça de Fra Juníper Serra. The monument which dominates the square represents Brother Serra, the statue is the work of sculptor Guillem Galmés.|
|Sanctuary of Bonany|
|The shrine of the Virgin of Bonany is a mystical place of Petra, deeply connected to its history for more than four centuries. It is 4 km southwest of the city. Go to Sanctuary of Bonany.|
|Brother Juniper Serra|
|Juníper Serra was born in Petra on the 24 November 1713, under the name Miquel Josep Serra i Ferrer ; he was baptized the same day at St. Peter’s Church. Miquel Serra followed the course of the Franciscan monastery Saint Bernard, close to her parents’ house in Petra, and then studied at the monastery of St. Francis in Palma de Mallorca.|
In 1730, at the age of 16 years, Serra received the Franciscan habit at the Convent of Jesus in the city of Palma. A year later, he made his profession of faith and took the name of Juníper, in admiration for the simplicity and joy of heavenly companion of Francis of Assisi, Juniperus, dubbed the "minstrel of God". Saint Francis said of his companion Juniperus "May God, my brothers, we have a whole wood of the juniper" (Juniperus is the Latin name of the aromatic shrub, juniper).
During the 1731-1737 years, Juníper Serra continued to study philosophy and theology at the Royal Monastery of St. Francis and the Llull University of Palma. Serra preached in many cities of Majorca, he was so small he could barely see over the desk when he spoke his sermons!
In early 1749, at the age of 36 years, Serra and his friend, Brother Francesc Palou, asked to become missionaries in New Spain. The third day of the feast of Easter 1749 Juníper preached for the last time in Petra, it was the last sermon of Lent, which, according to custom, was done Bonany. He went to Palma to embark to the peninsula on Sunday, the Angel (the Sunday after Easter).
|Juníper Serra left the Spanish port of Cadiz on August 28, 1749, aboard the ship "Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe" and it was with twenty other Franciscan missionaries, including his disciple, Brother Joan Crespi, who became the chronicler of Serra in the future evangelization of High California and Brother Francesc Palou, who later became the biographer of Serra. The trip to New Spain was particularly long and arduous, a race that lasted 99 days, with two stops in Puerto Rico (the second stop necessitated by a storm) before the brothers should arrive at the port of Vera Cruz, the December 6, 1749.|
Brother Serra labored as a missionary in Mexico for twenty years, from 1749 to 1769 and was sent to High California (Alta California), to pursue the work of evangelization of the Jesuits who had been expelled from the viceroyalty. He founded the first mission in San Diego de Alcalá, July 16, 1769, and eight other missions that gave rise to large cities such as San Diego or San Francisco.
Brother Serra died on Saturday, August 28, 1784, the day of St. Augustine, in the Mission St. Charles Borromeo of the Carmel (San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo) near Monterey, California, where he is buried.
"Now we will rest! "Were the last words spoken by Brother Juníper Serra, after a long life of toil. He had lived 70 years, 53 as religious, 35 as a missionary, and of these years, 16 years in California.
In 1931 a statue of the missionary was installed at the Capitol in Washington, as the representative of the State of California.
On 25 September 1988 Juníper Serra was beatified by Pope John Paul II, who declared "universal Majorcan".