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The Name: San Juan Capistrano y el Camate

St John of Capistrano http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=692

St John of Capistrano (1385–1456)

El Camate was the name of a nearby Indian village. The Camate part of the original ranch became a separate ranch operated by Walter Lewis, who later married Elizabeth Elson, sister of Robert Flint Jr’s wife Eliza. The name San Juan Capistrano does not of course refer to the San Juan Capistrano, the mission in southern California that the swallows come back to every year. There is also a mission San Juan Capistrano at San Antonio, Texas. Moreover, San Juan Capistrano y el Camate was one of two ranchos in California with San Juan Capistrano in their name.

San Juan Capistrano or St John of Capistrano or San Giovanni da Capestrano was born at Capestrano, Kingdom of Naples, in 1385. He practiced as a lawyer in the courts of Naples and was appointed governor of Perugia. During a war with a neighboring town he was betrayed and imprisoned. Upon his release he became a Franciscan monk. The missions named after him were founded by Franciscans. After his ordination as a priest he traveled throughout Italy, Germany, Bohemia, Austria, Hungary, Poland, and Russia preaching penance and establishing numerous communities of Franciscan renewal. John was known as the "Scourge of the Jews" for his fanatical anti-semitism. At the age of seventy, he led a crusade against invading Turks. Marching at the head of seventy thousand Christians, he gained victory in the great battle of Belgrade in 1456. For this accomplishment he is known as “the soldier saint”. Three months later he died at Illok, Hungary of bubonic plague. His feast day is October 23. He is the patron saint of jurists, military chaplains and the city of Belgrade.1


1 “St. John of Capistrano” at http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=692; "John of Capistrano" at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_of_Capistrano.

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