Giant 19-Story Cross in Groom, Texas: A Symbol of Resilience and Faith

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Drive along the flat expanse of the Texas Panhandle, and suddenly, a nearly 200-foot-tall cross reaches the skyline. This isn’t a mirage, but the Big Cross of Groom, Texas, a sight that’s become as iconic as the Route 66 and Interstate 40 it stands between.

This colossal symbol of faith isn’t just a roadside attraction; it’s the life’s work of one man. After years in the oil and gas industry, he’s traded in rigging for watching tourists marvel at his creation. That’s just a glimpse into the story behind the Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ Ministries, a site that’s as awe-inspiring as it is intriguing. Let’s begin a fascinating journey into the heart of Groom, Texas.

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Overview of the Groom Texas Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ

Transitioning from a planned spiritual billboard, the Groom Texas Cross morphed into an architectural masterpiece. Standing 19 stories tall and weighing 2 ½ million pounds, the steel cross completes the landscape of Groom, Texas. Built in just eight months by over 100 welders, it stands as a testament to the power of faith and resilience. Erected in July of 1995, it continues to be the site of numerous added artworks.

The Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ is located in Groom, Texas, which is situated along Interstate 40. Here are the specific details for visiting or contacting the site:

Location

  • Address: 19501 I-40, Groom, TX 79039, USA
  • Directions: The cross is easily accessible from Interstate 40 and is clearly visible from the highway. Groom is located between the cities of Amarillo and Oklahoma City.
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Contact Information

  • Visitor’s Center: The site includes a visitor’s center where guests can learn more about the cross and its significance. The center likely provides brochures, visitor information, and other resources.

Additional Tips

  • Visiting Hours: The site is open to the public 24 hours a day, but visiting during daylight hours is recommended for the best experience.
  • Facilities: Amenities such as parking, restrooms, and picnic areas are available for visitors.
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Significance and Symbolism

The Groom Texas Cross isn’t just a work of art; it’s a beacon of faith, symbolizing life’s journey and spiritual evolution. The creator, at the age of 73, breathes life continually into it, adding intricate artworks as long as health permits, thereby making it a living monument of dedication, perseverance, and unwavering belief.

Artifacts added include a replica of The Last Supper, an imitation of the Shroud of Turin thought to have wrapped Jesus’s body, and 14 sculptures representing Jesus at the Stations of the Cross. Each addition, layered with profound significance, invites contemplation, renewal, and spiritual growth.

Architectural Features

The stark aesthetic of the steel cross is bold in its simplicity, commanding attention and evoking introspection. While its immense scale signifies might and endurance, it’s also home to a cascade of thought-provoking artworks:

  1. The Last Supper Replica: Artful figures, depicting the last supper with the disciples.
  2. The Shroud of Turin Imitation: A replica suggesting mystery, transformation and resurrection.
  3. Jesus’s Empty Tomb Depiction: A representation emphasizing hope, victory and redemption.
  4. Stations of the Cross Sculptures: Fourteen sculptures narrating Jesus’s journey to his crucifixion and subsequent resurrection, a compelling narrative of love, suffering, and ultimate triumph.

The steel cross is not merely a structure. Its architectural features tell the rich story of human faith and endurance, imitating the biblical path, thus marking it as an inspirational spiritual retreat.

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Historical Context

Peering into the past often reveals the mysteries behind the things we see today. This is absolutely true when observing the Big Cross of Groom, Texas, which carries a multi-faceted history that extends far beyond its steel structure. Let’s take a journey back in time to explore the fascinating tale this monument has to tell.

The Vision and Construction

In its initial stages, the Big Cross’s blueprint was no more than an extraordinary spiritual billboard. But, this concept underwent an awe-inspiring transformation, resulting in a 19-story, 2.5 million-pound cross that could rival the most arresting structures in the world.

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Constructed in two shops in Pampa, Texas, a small town with a mighty heart, over 100 committed welders dedicated an astounding eight months to its creation. The skeletal frame came to life piece by piece as sparks flew and the roar of welding machines echoed throughout the vicinity.

On a noteworthy day in July 1995, after much prayer and careful planning, this massive steel cross was erected, its silhouette gracing the Texan skyline—a vision of faith and strength in steel manifest.

Key Milestones and Developments

Over the years, the Big Cross hasn’t been content to merely stand tall. Its creator, Thomas, a man who is now in his 70s but still powered by an indefatigable spirit, continues to enrich this iconic landmark with beautifully crafted religious artwork. The tale of the Big Cross is a living narrative. It evolves as Thomas adds more elements to his extensive portfolio of art.

So when you gaze upon the Big Cross, you aren’t simply witnessing a structure; you’re standing before a living, evolving narrative that continues to bear witness to centuries of faith and perseverance.

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Visitor Experience

Join the remarkable journey of faith and resilience at the Big Cross of Groom, Texas. Here’s what you can expect from this immersive religious escape:.

You’ll See

Walking into the cross complex, you’re immediately enveloped in a girth of spirituality. You’re greeted by a breathtaking 19-story steel cross. This event is part of an intimate journey that combines majestic sights with engaging narratives that carve a path through centuries of faith and resolve.

Blink, and you’ll miss the small details that elevate this experience. Each step brings you closer to a plethora of intricate religious artworks that Thomas painstakingly added over the years. You’ll find replicas of ‘The Last Supper’ and the ‘Shroud of Turin’, a heartfelt depiction of Jesus’s empty tomb, and moving memorials like the abortion memorial. These works don’t just resonate with aesthetic beauty; they narrate a living story of faith.

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Mission Nombre de Dios—The Great Cross, St. Augustine, Florida

Largest Crosses in The World

Here is the list of some of the world’s largest crosses, ordered by height:

  1. Valle de los Caídos (Valley of the Fallen), near Madrid, Spain
    • Height: 152 meters (500 feet)
    • Details: A war memorial and basilica built between 1940 and 1959.
  2. The Great Cross, St. Augustine, Florida, USA
    • Height: 208 feet (63 meters)
    • Details: Commemorates the 400th anniversary of St. Augustine, erected in 1966.
  3. Effingham Cross, Effingham, Illinois, USA
    • Height: 198 feet (60 meters)
    • Details: Known as the “Cross at the Crossroads,” it was completed in 2001.
  4. Cross at Groom (The Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ), Groom, Texas, USA
    • Height: 190 feet (58 meters)
    • Details: Erected in 1995, it features stations of the cross and a depiction of the Last Supper.
  5. Cross of the Plains, Amarillo, Texas, USA
    • Height: 190 feet (58 meters)
    • Details: Another significant cross in Texas, visible from major highways.
  6. The Millennium Cross, Skopje, North Macedonia
    • Height: 66 meters (217 feet)
    • Details: Built in 2002 to mark 2,000 years of Christianity, located on Vodno Mountain.
  7. Cross of All Nations, Mount Lebanon, Lebanon
    • Height: 73.8 meters (242 feet)
    • Details: Constructed in 2010 at an altitude of 2,000 meters on Qanat Bakish Hill.
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This ordering reflects the crosses’ heights, showcasing how each serves as a significant religious and cultural monument in its respective location.

Author Profile
Christian Linden Texas View Headshot 3 - Texas View
Author at Texas View | Texas View

Christian Linden is a seasoned writer and contributor at Texas View, specializing in topics that resonate with the Texan community. With over a decade of experience in journalism, Christian brings a wealth of knowledge in local politics, culture, and lifestyle. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Communications from the University of Texas. When he's not writing, Christian enjoys spending weekends traveling across Texas with his family, exploring everything from bustling cities to serene landscapes.

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