The 4-foot tall, 2,000-pound treasure — made from stone within the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, a site where it is said Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem, and carved in Bethlehem, the site of Jesus’ birth — traveled over 6,500 miles from the Holy Land. Today, it rests in the parish hall courtyard of St. Edward Roman Catholic Church.
“It really looks beautiful, doesn’t it?” Monsignor Thomas Klinzing told The Palm Beach Post. “It’s one of a kind.”
The heavy Jesus statue was taken by crane to the church’s courtyard earlier this month.
It all came about as a result of a photograph Klinzing saw more than two years ago. He asked St. Edward’s member Desmond Keogh, the owner of Haifa Limestone in West Palm Beach, to see if it was even possible.
He got a call from Jerusalem one year later.
Keogh, Klinzing and other members of the church privately funded the piece extracted from Jerusalem, carved by a Christian in Bethlehem, for $50,000.
Later this year, the church, which was founded in 1926, plans to dedicate the new addition with a plaque and a ceremony.
St. Edward’s serves the Palm Beach community in several ways. The church gives 750 meals a week to local food pantries, is used as a polling place during elections, for Police Department exams and graduation ceremonies, and by the Town Council for meetings.