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Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción de Acuña - National Fund For Sacred Places
2017 Cohort

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción de Acuña

(Roman Catholic)

San Antonio, Texas

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción de Acuña, commonly called Mission Concepción, is designated as part of the combined San Antonio Missions and the Alamo UNESCO World Heritage Site for its outstanding universal value as an example of interweaving Indigenous and Spanish cultures.

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción by National Park Service

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción by National Park Service

2017 Cohort

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción de Acuña

(Roman Catholic)

San Antonio, Texas

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción de Acuña, commonly called Mission Concepción, is designated as part of the combined San Antonio Missions and the Alamo UNESCO World Heritage Site for its outstanding universal value as an example of interweaving Indigenous and Spanish cultures.

Constructed in 1755 as part of Franciscan missionary efforts to convert the local Indigenous population, the church combines Roman Catholic and Spanish Colonial architecture with Indigenous building traditions. The surviving original domed roof and remnants of polychrome painted decoration make Mission Concepción the most intact building of all four churches in the historic ensemble, which represents the largest concentration of Spanish Colonial architecture in North America.

Today, Mission Concepción balances an active parish life with the needs of over 2 million tourists who visit the site annually as a result of its UNESCO designation and inclusion in the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park. Many church members are descendants of the white, Latinx, and Native American people who founded the early church. The congregation currently supports several food drives, assists with refugee settlement, and gives monthly subsidies to two local sister parishes.

A National Fund grant of $250,000 with over $500,000 in matching funds raised by the congregation and affiliated nonprofit Old Spanish Missions supported the structural stabilization of the original Colonial-era masonry dome, which had expanded and cracked over time. Additional work included mitigating moisture infiltration at the roof through site drainage improvements, masonry repointing, and roof repairs. Mission Concepción’s participation in the National Fund program allowed the congregation to identify additional building needs and increase its fundraising capacity, facilitating the completion of other critical projects at this iconic church.

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción by National Park Service

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción by the National Trust for Historic Preservation

Strength in Community and Culture at Mission Concepción

Mission Concepción is one of the oldest unrestored stone churches in America—dedicated in 1755, it appears much as it did when it was first built. Today, the church is a National Historic Landmark, a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site, and home to an active Catholic community.

Mission Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción by El Camino San Antonio Missions/Rebecca Simmons

Stories and Media Coverage

Read more about how the National Fund for Sacred Places is helping congregations around the country rehabilitate their sacred places.

Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church by Luis P. Gutierrez