The Chino Valley had a special connection to the Mission at San Gabriel (1771).
It would serve as a stock range for the Mission cattle. In 1890, as the Chino area began to grow, the Claretian Fathers came from San Gabriel to conduct Sunday services.
The first masses in Chino, before the Church was built, were celebrated in the home of Mr. Lindo, the town jeweler. The first Catholic Church was built in 1903 on the corner of Third and D Street; a small frame building that sat 120 people. at the time, the Our Lady of Guadalupe mission was part of the Diocese of Monterey - Los Angeles.
In 1908, Bishop Thomas Conaty purchased a building to hold church services at Central Avenue and D Street in Chino.
In 1912, a church was built with Gothic frame design and large steeple that sat 144 people. It was dedicated by Bishop Conaty on December 15 , 1912 with a solemn High Mass. . The Claretian Fathers continued to serve the mission until 1919. In 1920, Rev.. C.J. Creamer became the first residential priest and presumably, the mission became a full parish.
In 1936, Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish became part of the new Diocese of San Diego.
The new parish was divided in 1947 and the parish of Saint Margaret was begun.
In 1954, the original church at 3rd and D Street was torn down and a new church was constructed. Most of the labor was done by parishioners along with some skilled Mexican artisans. The women of the parish were very pivotal in helping to raise funds for the construction of this church. Also they provided food for workers, some of which were their husbands or other family members . Some of those family names still appear under the stained glass windows of the church was completed in 1959 and had seating for 600 people.
The Reverend Richard Ackerman, auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of San Diego dedicated the new church in 1959, along with Pastor Juan Saldana.
The parish became part of the Diocese of San Bernardino in the 1978. During its 115 years as a parish, there have been 22 pastors, in addition to the many claretian priests who helped in the early years.
In the 85 years of the parish life there have been several dark events, one of tragedy and one of great inconvenience.
During the mid-1970s,local gang members encroached the the parish ground (there were no fences around the church grounds) to use drugs in the restrooms and cause fear among the parishioners. The parishioners formed security teams(mostly men) and rotated shifts patrolling the parish grounds. Meanwhile, the parish women provided coffee for the teams. It was during this time that two parishioners were fatally shot while in the patio area. The shots came from across D Street . No one was ever apprehended and it was believed that one of the irritated gang members committed this murder. As a result, Ignacio Bobby Padilla and Manuela Rey Cortez sacrificed their lives for the parish of OLG on May 17th 1978. A memorial stands in the patio to honor their great sacrifice.
Finally, in 2017, parishioners experienced their greatest surprise and inconvenience. Our beloved church was closed down because the church roof rafters were not able to sustain the roof any longer. For 5 months, the parishioners attended mass outdoors, if weather permitted, or in the small parish hall. This event brought the parishioners together as a parish. It renewed the financial commitment to get the roof repaired and encouraged parishioners to volunteer their talents to refurbish all the pews. Our gratitude goes out to the Diocese for the loan to fund the repairs, to all those parishioners and non-parishioners that donated generously that donated generously to help this parish return to worship in this ionic and beautiful church of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Chino