A 218-foot tall cross is currently under construction in Branson, MO. The organization behind the project, Images at the Cross, hopes the cross will be completed by Easter next year. The project has been in the work for years, and was featured in the news way back in 2012. You can also read more about the project at the "ahem" somewhat dated website for Images at the Cross.
Six years ago, Kerry Brown from Images at the Cross announced the plans to build the monument. He planned to raise the $5 million necessary and begin construction in 2013. Obviously that did not happen. But now that Images at the Cross has raised $3 million work on the project has begun, although they are still raising additional funds for landscaping and development of the area around the monument.
The cross will be more than something to gawk at from the highway. Visitors will be able to enter the cross, and take one of two elevators up to the cross beam. Once in the cross beam visitors will be able to see the story of Jesus's life. Also, the plan is for the walls to be white when viewed from the outside, but transparent when viewed from the inside.
I wonder if the monument's story of Jesus's life will include the contradictory accounts in the various gospels? ... Probably not.
Brown, speaking to reporters, said, "I believe that there are a lot of people that are going to be driving down the road, and they are going to see the cross, and they are going to have an encounter one on one with the Lord. They're going to want to pull over and we do want to minister to those people and help them come into the Kingdom. But the major purpose I see is maturing the saint, or perfecting the saint-- someone who is already in the Kingdom-- for the work of the ministry."
Right... I am sure that people will flock in droves the same way they are flocking to the Ark Encounter Creation Museum in Kentucky, right?
The cross is being built on privately owned land with privately raised funds, at least. And unlike the Ark Encounter park there is nothing in the news about the local government providing incentives or other funding for the project. So that is refreshing.
It still seems to me like a tremendous waste of money. I would think someone who really wanted to honor Jesus would give all that money to those in need. But maybe Jesus wants 218-foot tall reminder of the pain he suffered when he was killed. How nostalgic for him.