Rio de Janeiro’s ‘Christ the Redeemer’ stands 98-feet tall at the top of Corcovado mountain in Brazil’s second-most populated city. Over 1,800,000 people visit the Art Deco statue of Jesus Christ each year and the record number of tourists in a single day is 14,000 on Easter in 2011. Construction on the famous monument took nine years and cost the modern day equivalent to more than $3,500,000 to build to completion in 1931.
Now considered the country’s most iconic landmark, the top of Christ the Redeemer’s head towers 2,340 feet above sea level and oversees the entire landscape. Well, the Brazilian city of Encantado is sick of being overshadowed by Rio and has embarked on a quest to build their own Son of Christ that is bigger and better. The Jesus-measuring contest has begun.
Officials in the southern municipality have already started construction on a statue that is set to be roughly 16 feet taller than the one up north and will top out at 141 feet. Featuring a similar look and the same outstretched arms as Christ the Redeemer, Christ the Protector will allow tourists to take an elevator up to a glass lookout in the stature’s torso. Take that, Redeemer.
'CHRIST THE PROTECTOR STATUE'
LOOK: View of a Christ statue being built in Encantado, Rio Grande do Sul state in Brazil, on April 9. | 📷SILVIO AVILA / AFP pic.twitter.com/xBJ8UTPeL8
— Inquirer (@inquirerdotnet) April 12, 2021
Surpassing the Redeemer in height, the Protector will be the third-largest stature of Jesus in the world, behind a 172-foot statue in Poland and a massive 253-foot statue that is being built in Mexico. The construction is being funded by individual and corporate donations with the goal of boosting the region’s tourism industry.
To put it in simpler terms, the city of Encantado basically said “we’re sick and tired of everyone going to see Jesus in Rio, so we’re going to make our own Jesus and he is going to be bigger and better.” The entire idea is hilarious, considering all of the other things that officials could have landed on with hopes of increasing tourism. Instead, they just completely undercut the long-established statue of their northernly neighbors and added about 20 feet and an observation deck. Not only that, but they could have called it “Son of Christ,” or “Jesus the Savior,” or almost anything else, but instead they chose to take “Christ the Redeemer” and change just one word. They’re not even trying to hide what they’re doing, which makes it that much better.
Take that, Rio. Encantado has the crown now— pun indended.