A group of community leaders on the South Coast is proposing to move a statue of a controversial historical and religious leader to a less prominent location. Some people have been calling for the removal of the bronze statue of Father Junipero Serra in front of Ventura’s City Hall.
Serra was the founder of California’s chain of missions, and has been named a saint by the Catholic Church. But, some contend Native Americans were abused by the early settlers, and that Serra did nothing to intervene.
Ventura’s Mayor, the pastor at the San Buenaventura Mission, and a representative of the Chumash tribe met on the statue issue. They think the answer is coming up with a plan to move it to a non-public location.
The group says it’s hoping for a peaceful process to accomplish the change. There would have to be a public review, with the Ventura City Council making the final decision.