Christ the Redeemer is a statue of Jesus Christ in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The statue is 120 ft tall and weighs 635 tons. It is now a part of the modern Seven Wonders of the World. It is located on Corcovado Mountain at its peak 700 meters, or 2,300 feet high in the Tujuca Forest National Park overlooking the city. The statue is made of concrete and soapstone. As a symbol of Christianity, it has become an important icon of Brazil, with Jesus Christ appearing to open his arms wide to embrace the entire city below.
The 1850s marked the first time it was suggested to construct a statue of Christ on the top of Carcovado by Catholic priest Pedro Maria Boss. The request of the finance was sent to Princess Isabel to build this huge religious mountain. Initially, the idea was dismissed. Finally, in 1921, the Catholic Circle of Rio proposed plans for a large statue of Christ.
During this time, in order to gain more publicity, the group organized an event for a week where donations were taken from the public and signatures were taken for those who were in favor of building the statue. Most of the donations came from the Brazilian Catholics. A lot of suggestions were given; some suggested that the cross of the Christ should be represented along with Christ, or that the statue should be of Jesus with a globe in his hands. Finally, a statue of Jesus with open arms was chosen. Construction of this religious symbol took nine years to complete, beginning in 1922 and ending in 1931. It was struck by lightning in February of 2008 during an electrical storm. Several trees were felled, but the statue was left unscathed, owing to the fact that it was made with a top layer of soapstone, which is a good insulator.
Traveling to Christ The Redeemer
Devotees flock to the site to get a sense of the peace and hope it provides, and ordinary tourists approach it to appease their curiosity regarding the spirituality that this statue evokes in many. Once in Rio, the monument can be reached by taxi or, if a more scenic route is preferred, by train from Rua Cosme Velho.