Opening Doors ~ Day Five


This is Day Five of Opening Doors Photo Challenge. Thanks so much Jientje for this fun idea and being the hostess for it. My eyes have been opened to seeing so many great doors and doorways. We have a great old church that sits above Ventura Blvd. in Old Town Camarillo where you can hear the bells peal three times a day. I decided to stop and see it’s doors up close.


It was July 1, 1913. St. Mary Magdalen had been officially established. For several years the brothers, Adolfo and Juan Camarillo, had planned to build a more permanent structure to replace the overcrowded one-room wooden family chapel atop the hill along El Camino Real. Across Ventura Boulevard from the chapel stood a drug store with a high wooden billboard-like front that now stands vacant — the former Southern Pacific railroad depot that had given Camarillo its name. A few blocks westward near the middle of what is now Arneil Road, was the Pleasant Valley Baptist Church that was built in 1890. (This must be what is now Evangelical Free Church of Camarillo) A new hilltop church of ample proportions would set the tone of the growing city for decades to come and serve as a fitting tribute to God, the city, and the first family.

One day while Juan was traveling near his father’s birthplace of Mexico City, a mission-style church caught his eye. He commissioned architect Albert C. Martin to design the Camarillo church along the same lines. Juan built the church in honor of his father, Don Juan Camarillo, and his mother, Martina Hernandez. It was named for Juan and Adolfo’s oldest sister, Magdalena.

On July 4, 1914, the magnificent chapel was dedicated by the Bishop at an impressive ceremony attended by most of the townspeople coming in flag-draped cars.

From it’s hill top position, the chapel’s belfry tower, looking like a multi-tiered wedding cake, was the dominate landmark in Pleasant Valley. It was from this tower, that the bell tolled thrice daily calling the faithful to the Angelus. This was a photo I took earlier in the year.


During the past 76 years, the rugged hilltop chapel has withstood the ravages of earthquakes, fire, and time.  Mrs. Gloria Petit Longo recalls the effects of a smoke damaged interior resulting from a fire. It occurred a few days before her wedding and the ceremony was held under paint scaffolding.

For more Opening Doors Photos visit Jientje at Heaven in Belgium.

Photobucket is holding all my photos that I posted on my blog from 2007-2015 hostage and replaced them with big black and grey boxes with threats. So discouraging…as I’m slowly trying to clean up thousands of posts!

About Ellen am a wife, mother, baba (grandmother) and a loyal friend. Jesus is my King and my hope is in my future with Him.

10 thoughts on “Opening Doors ~ Day Five

  1. Wow, Ellen – this is probably my favorite door post so far! I love the architecture — how about that intricate doorway that sets of the simplicity of the doors. Great contrast!! Thanks bunches for sharing these doors with us.

  2. What wonderful doors you are showing us today. I love the way you show so much detail. I’ve probably said that on other posts but you are good at showing the full picture and then the details, and it makes it so interesting. Great post.

  3. PS I have too many blogs. I meant to sign in with the one I’m doing the opening doors challenge on and after I hit send above, I realized I got it wrong.

  4. What beautiful images you share today! I love the framing on the first two shots – wonderfully done.
    This is a gorgeous church and you found many wonderful doors to share.

    Great post!

  5. Pingback: ABC Wednesday ~ Mary Magdalen Church, Camarillo « The Happy Wonderer

  6. Pingback: ABC Wednesday ~ St. John’s Seminary in Camarillo « The Happy Wonderer

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