St. Joseph Apache Mission church is nestled in the heart of the Sacramento Mountains where it stands as a tribute to the faith, patriotism and courage of the people of southern New Mexico.

This inspiring historic Late Gothic Revival church was built to serve the people of the Mescalero Apache Reservation, and has been dedicated as a memorial to all veterans, past, present and future. The church was built by Fr. Albert Braun, OFM, a veteran of both World Wars with the help of stonemason, Tony Marie Leyva and several volunteers. 

Through the years St. Joseph Apache Mission has continued to serve the spiritual and communal needs of the Mescalero Apache people and surrounding neighbors.

The Mission is open daily to visitors free of charge, tours are available.

Full time restoration work began in February of 2000.  The restoration project to save St. Joseph Apache Mission church was structured as a hands-on training program in the art of historic stone building preservation.  Over the last 14 years we have given 42 young adults job skills training. It is our hope that this project will provide skilled craftspeople that will help preserve the rich architectural heritage of the Southwest. 

In addition there are the less “urgent” problems that need to be addressed: the installation of an adequate heating system and the construction of handicap-accessible restroom facilities.

Nearing the completion of the needed restoration work we are now focusing on finishing a few projects:
1) A new stairway from the main parking lot up to the church.
2) A Veteran’s Flagpole Memorial.
3) The entryway for the reconciliation room.
4) Three more stained glass windows.
5) New furnishings for the sacristy. 
6) A new sign for the driveway.

Over 73% of the donated funds raised go towards the cost of labor.  Our dedicated crew members are deeply motivated by a desire to help save this inspiring church and Veterans’ Memorial.

Our current efforts are now being focused on the Veterans’ Memorial Flagpole and the new concrete stairway from the main parking lot to the church. The stairway is now ready for the engraved bricks that will be placed on the treads of the stairs. This will give our donors a new way to support this important endeavor. These bricks can be engraved in honor of someone living, in memory of someone who has passed or service clubs can purchase them to show support of the project using their information.


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