MEXICO CITY (CNS) — State and municipal officials in the north-central state of Zacatecas have unveiled plans to build the world’s biggest statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the national patroness — hoping the giant image would increase tourist visits.
The proposed statue would stand 147 feet, taller than other famous religious landmarks in Mexico such as the Christ the King statues in the states of Aguascalientes and Guanajuato. In 2012, Pope Benedict XVI flew past the Christ the King statue in Guanajuato and celebrated Mass nearby.
The proposed statue also would be taller than a 75-foot statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe in the town of Xicotepec de Juarez in Puebla state, to the east of Mexico City. The statue in Puebla was also built with the idea of attracting tourists, according to press reports.
Local officials project the statue in Zacatecas will cost $4.25 million, with 62.5 percent of the money coming from the private sectors, according to the newspaper El Universal.
The spending of public money on religious landmarks is controversial in Mexico, where church-state relations were strained for most of the last century and politicians used to publicly profess anti-clerical positions. The mayor of the municipality of Guadalupe, where the statue will be located, told El Universal the expectation was to promote religious tourism — as happened in Puebla with the building of the statue there.
In a time of crisis CatholicPhilly.com keeps the information flowing
During the current coronavirus crisis, you can help CatholicPhilly.com deliver the kind of news people need to know about the Catholic Church, especially in the Philadelphia region, and the world in which we live ― every day.
Budgets are tight at this time, and CatholicPhilly's is no different than those of most families. We make sure your donation in any amount will go a long way toward continuing our mission to inform, form in the Catholic faith and inspire the thousands of readers who visit every month.
Here is how you can help:
- A $100 gift allows us to present award-winning photos of Catholic life in our neighborhoods.
- A $50 gift enables us to cover a news event in a local parish, school or Catholic institution.
- A $20 gift lets us obtain solid faith formation resources that can deepen your spirituality and knowledge of the faith.
- A small, automated monthly donation means you can support us continually and easily.
Won't you consider making a gift today?
Please join in the church's vital mission of communications by offering a gift in whatever amount that you can ― a single gift of $40, $50, $100, or more, or a monthly donation. Your gift will strengthen the fabric of our entire Catholic community.
Make your donation by credit card here:
Or make your donation by check:
222 N. 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103