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Founded in 1798, Old Mission San Luis Rey de Francia, known as the "King of the Missions," is a National Historic Landmark. The largest of all the 21 California missions, it is home to a community of Franciscan Friars and is open daily to the public in the Franciscan tradition of heritage and hospitality. Facilities include a Retreat Center with day and overnight programs for spiritual renewal, multi-function meeting spaces, a Cemetery open to all people, Mission Gift Shop, Historic Church and interpretive Museum.
Founded on June 13, 1798 by Padre Fermín Lasuén, this is the eighteenth of the Spanish missions established in California and is a National Historic Landmark. The Mission functions today as the home of Franciscan Friars from the Province of Saint Barbara, a museum, cemetery and retreat center. It also remains a place where the Luiseño Indians gather. Their annual powwow and monthly tribal council meetings are held on the grounds. Tours are provided by volunteers to visitors and school trip kids. Meeting and retreat facilities are available. A cemetery founded in 1798 is adjacent to the mission and is still accepting burials.