The Archdiocese of Los Angeles and the Claretian Missionaries religious announced May 8 that the archdiocese will assume leadership at Our Lady Queen of Angels (La Placita) Church on July 1.

In 1911, Thomas J. Conaty, Bishop of the Diocese of Monterey-Los Angeles, which then extended from Monterey to San Diego, requested the support of the Claretian Missionaries to provide much-needed priests to minister to the growing Catholic community at La Placita Church.

For more than one hundred years, the Claretians have ministered to the faithful at the parish and the surrounding Downtown Los Angeles community.

“La Placita Church is the first church of our archdiocese and has been a spiritual haven for the many immigrant communities that have called downtown Los Angeles home since … 1822,” said Archbishop José H. Gomez. “We are extremely grateful for the tremendous contributions of the Claretian priests who have led this parish. … They have devoted their lives … bringing to life the Word of God through the many ministries they established to help those most in need.”

The current pastor at La Placita Church, Father Roland Lozano, CMF, stated, “I am grateful for the opportunity to serve at La Placita, and I am extremely thankful to the people of La Placita who have grown so much in leadership development and their faith commitment to the love and service of God’s people.”

The archdiocese also announced that Father Arturo Corral from St. Thomas the Apostle Church has been assigned to be the new pastor at La Placita Church. Father Corral will be working with Father Lozano during the transition. A special Mass in honor of the contributions of the Claretians at the parish is being planned.

“Our Claretian brother priests have established beautiful traditions and a tireless spirit of service. I look forward to working with them and the parish community during the transition and to having our Claretian brothers continue to join us in celebrating Masses and events at La Placita,” said Father Corral.