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In a Blaze of Glory
June 15, 2010 3:48 AM   Subscribe

Update to this. Last night, Big Butter Jesus burnt down. Apparently, it was an act of God.
posted by tizzie (112 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
Amateur on-the-scene video here.
posted by tizzie at 3:51 AM on June 15, 2010


No word from church officials about whether they plan to rebuild the statue.

Christ, it's tempting.
posted by maxwelton at 3:53 AM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


It'll raise itself in three days.
posted by orthogonality at 3:54 AM on June 15, 2010 [45 favorites]


orthogonality: "It'll raise itself in three days."

Damn it! The *one* time I've got the snappy comeback...
posted by notsnot at 4:00 AM on June 15, 2010 [3 favorites]


Well you can't say we weren't warned:
"You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above..."
posted by EndsOfInvention at 4:05 AM on June 15, 2010 [5 favorites]


Wow, I saw a British documentary about statues just two nights ago that featured that statue.
posted by smoothvirus at 4:12 AM on June 15, 2010


A wood and styrofoam sculpture over a steel framework anchored in concrete. This is covered with a fiberglass mat and resin exterior.

Built to burn, in other words...

This is the law of the burnt offering: It is the burnt offering, because of the burning upon the altar all night unto the morning, and the fire of the altar shall be burning in it.
posted by chavenet at 4:23 AM on June 15, 2010


Any news on which particular god is suspected? Have any shifty looking characters with big hammers been seen in the vicinity? Or maybe a big Greek bloke with a beard?
posted by Electric Dragon at 4:25 AM on June 15, 2010 [9 favorites]


"I was pretty upset," Andy Caudill says. "Seeing a big thing of our Lord and Savior gone."

Icon only imagine.
posted by Stan Carey at 4:25 AM on June 15, 2010 [16 favorites]


I grew up north of that thing and went to college in Cincinnati, so I've driven past it more times than I could count.

It's better for drivers, anyways - people would always brake check as they rubbernecked 'da Christ. Or stop their car in the emergency lane to take pictures, which is pretty intelligent on a very busy stretch of highway*.

*Note: That is not intelligent.
posted by glaucon at 4:27 AM on June 15, 2010


Christ, what an ashhole.
posted by bwg at 4:32 AM on June 15, 2010 [9 favorites]


Just passed this nine days ago en route to Holiday World in southern Indiana. I'm no great theologian but it always seemed so very ostentatious.
posted by adoarns at 4:46 AM on June 15, 2010


Good. That was one crappy Christ. Shouldn't he be a bit bigger than that cross he was supposed to have such trouble with? And what happened -- his prototype Walk On Water! (WOW!) sandals don't work on water?
posted by pracowity at 4:50 AM on June 15, 2010


First thought: "Good lord, that thing was tacky."

Second thought: "Oh, shit, that's a covered peril! Did we insure that?"

*checks*

"Whew."

Third thought: "I wonder if GoogleMaps has it..."

Nope.
posted by valkyryn at 4:54 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Is that his Myers-Briggs type on the cross?
posted by vbfg at 4:54 AM on June 15, 2010


DAMN YOU ALL TO HELL!
posted by PlusDistance at 4:58 AM on June 15, 2010


Personally, I'm more interested in Big Baby Jesus. And trust me, no one can burn him down.
posted by orville sash at 5:00 AM on June 15, 2010


Amateur on-the-scene video here.

That statue is burning like it was made out of witches and heretics. I'm told they are quite combustible.
posted by kuujjuarapik at 5:04 AM on June 15, 2010 [3 favorites]


The Hustler Superstore, which is located at that same exit, was not affected. I'm just sayin'.
posted by tizzie at 5:15 AM on June 15, 2010 [33 favorites]


Any news on which particular god is suspected? Have any shifty looking characters with big hammers been seen in the vicinity? Or maybe a big Greek bloke with a beard?

Definitely betting on Zeus for this one....
posted by samsara at 5:15 AM on June 15, 2010


So, they made a giant wire frame connected right to a body of water, but when lightning strikes it during a storm, it "cannot be a coincidence." Ummm ....

This sounds like a job for SCIENCE!
posted by adipocere at 5:17 AM on June 15, 2010 [11 favorites]


Cut Scene: Oral Roberts is seen walking away from camera whistling. Oral jumps, clicks heels, camera freezes.

Cue credits.

posted by Ufez Jones at 5:20 AM on June 15, 2010


Burning Man, East
posted by MtDewd at 5:25 AM on June 15, 2010 [5 favorites]


This is why I've always worshipped Vulcan. Ain't no little bolt of lightning gonna fry his naked butt!

PRAISE VULCAN!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:28 AM on June 15, 2010 [5 favorites]


Bing Maps has it. Hint: click the rotate buttons to view it from different angles.
posted by I'm Doing the Dishes at 5:38 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Nooooo! That was always the highlight of our trip down to see the Red play!
posted by charred husk at 5:40 AM on June 15, 2010


Also, I love how two different interpretations entered my mind when watching the video of it burning:

"God had destroyed that prideful icon."
"JESUS IS ON FIRE!! OMG ITS ENDTIMES!!!1!!"

On a related tangent, a large church burnt down some months ago here in Toledo. I loved the sense of humor they had about it - they hung a sign out in front of the demolished building that read, "On FIRE for the Lord!"
posted by charred husk at 5:49 AM on June 15, 2010 [5 favorites]


It doesn't matter if half the images are missing, here's the original Fark Photoshop this Amusingly large Jesus thread.
posted by furtive at 5:50 AM on June 15, 2010


Item #14B State Legislature Meeting Item: Jesus-Related Accessory Buildings: Ohio Building Code amendment

41.2.4.5 (b) should read: All butter-like Jesus statues over 50ft tall shall be constructed to be non-flammable (strike inflammable, ambiguous).
posted by jimmythefish at 5:56 AM on June 15, 2010 [3 favorites]


God is making changes to his career, and has to leave behind the old things that defined that. Sort of like a child star making the leap to adulthood.

So cute!
posted by clvrmnky at 5:57 AM on June 15, 2010


his prototype Walk On Water! (WOW!) sandals don't work on water?

Not unless you have pow - wer...
posted by odinsdream at 6:00 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


That Jesus guy has the worst luck.
posted by Daddy-O at 6:02 AM on June 15, 2010 [3 favorites]


Wha whaaa whaaaaat?

Jesus was the Terminator???
posted by a non e mouse at 6:03 AM on June 15, 2010


Really though, if you construct a giant lightning rod, anchor it in a pond, and cover it with flammable material you should pretty much expect this to happen.
posted by Daddy-O at 6:07 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Speaking of graven images and crazy Christian fundamentalists, Rex’s Erection (of Ernest Angley Ministries) probably won’t burn down any time soon.
posted by vkxmai at 6:16 AM on June 15, 2010


vkxmai, I lived about two blocks away from Rex Humbard when I was in high school. The big house he lived in, on Portage Path in Akron, had a totem pole in the front yard. I always thought that was a bit incongruous.
posted by tizzie at 6:22 AM on June 15, 2010


They could replace it with a statue of Mary Margarine.
posted by Stan Carey at 6:26 AM on June 15, 2010 [13 favorites]


And what to we burn, apart from witches?
posted by drlith at 6:27 AM on June 15, 2010


Has anyone blamed the gays yet? No?
I blame the gays.
posted by rocket88 at 6:31 AM on June 15, 2010


The only thing visible this morning is the charged frame of the structure.

Actually, I think the lightning charge was probably grounded away pretty quickly.
posted by lordrunningclam at 6:32 AM on June 15, 2010


Obligatory link to MC 900-ft Jesus.
posted by adamrice at 6:32 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


No link to the Big Butter Jesus song?
posted by inthe80s at 6:35 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Definitely betting on Zeus for this one....


Zeus had the means, motive, and opportunity. However, he claims to have been in Peru, in the guise of a great bull llama, mating with a mortal at the time of the lightninging of the Jesus.
posted by Mister_A at 6:43 AM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


"On FIRE for the Lord!"
posted by charred husk


Eponysterical!
posted by kmz at 6:44 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Crucifried.
posted by joe lisboa at 6:48 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


If there turns out to be a God and a heaven and a hell, we'll all be having a great party.
posted by theora55 at 6:49 AM on June 15, 2010


Michelangelo's David it's not it wasn't.
posted by Artful Codger at 6:51 AM on June 15, 2010


Man, if I was God I'd be pissed off enough to strike that thing with lightning too. Can't be bothered to give my kid legs? I'll show you.

Compelling quote from the article: "Seeing a big thing of our Lord and Savior gone. It's pretty sad."

Indeed.
posted by dirtdirt at 6:51 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Is this the part where we make fun of Christians?

Yes, as there is absolutely no difference between someone who dedicates their life to serving the poor and the prisoner, the widow and the orphan, and someone who spends a quarter of a million dollars on a plastic foam and fiberglass idol over a steel frame to publicize their business .

Lord, save me your thin-skinned followers.
posted by joe lisboa at 6:54 AM on June 15, 2010 [26 favorites]


I've seen similar incidents where people half-jokingly claimed, "you should have known better for installing that organ/hiring that live band/serving wine at communion."
posted by KirkJobSluder at 6:54 AM on June 15, 2010


* from!
posted by joe lisboa at 6:54 AM on June 15, 2010


Oh sure, but if it happened at a Mosque, they'd all be saying "See, this is God's will!"

And they're dumb enough they think Muslims have 60 foot tall statues of Mohammed.
posted by mccarty.tim at 6:57 AM on June 15, 2010


"I was pretty upset," Andy Caudill says. "Seeing a big thing of our Lord and Savior gone. It's pretty sad."

That's basically how I described it too.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 6:58 AM on June 15, 2010


i'd call it a FRIGHTENING rod.

(silence)
posted by Hammond Rye at 7:05 AM on June 15, 2010


And yet God still lets this awesome and ominous thing stand, which most of the normals in Denver hate.

I'm just saying, if he's on the Right Wing Christians' side, shouldn't he be zapping the gigantic horrifying statue that greets people to the New World Order Masonic Fema Camp coverup that is the Denver International Airport?

All I'm saying is, maybe God is a member of Skull and Bones.
posted by mccarty.tim at 7:07 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm so glad that nobody seems to have been injured in the fire.

Because this way I can delight in this news without reservation.

Had I known that ghastly thing was only made out of spray-foam and fiberglass, I might have been tempted to torch it ages ago.
posted by wreckingball at 7:08 AM on June 15, 2010


A shame the video left out what happened afterwards. Damndest thing, too. This voice from the heavens boomed:

NEXT TIME, KNOW THY LEVITICUS
posted by zarq at 7:09 AM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


Meanwhile, further north on I-75, Jesus abides. (Not my photo.)
posted by dhens at 7:09 AM on June 15, 2010


The Hustler Superstore, which is located at that same exit, was not affected. I'm just sayin'.

You're just sayin' what? That God missed?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 7:15 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Our church just paid to have a lightning rod installed on our building. If only we had known about this idea!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:18 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


A blurry "before" picture on Google Street View. (Cluetip: On the inset map, drag the little yellow man icon around to some of the blue dots to see visitors' photos.)
posted by ardgedee at 7:19 AM on June 15, 2010


Just another case of Jesus on toast.
posted by briank at 7:20 AM on June 15, 2010


I have an Emglo air compressor and the manufacturer’s warranty covers acts of God. The only catch is, you have to get the cops to certify that God did it.

On a related note, fundamentalist religionists have a hard time distinguishing the sacred from the profane.
posted by Huplescat at 7:25 AM on June 15, 2010


Big Butter is watching you.

Well, not anymore...
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:33 AM on June 15, 2010


I don't understand why they have him rising out of the water in the first place. A reference to baptism? Some Bible story/passage I'm not aware of? As it is, every time I saw a photo of this statue I thought "It's Cthulhu Jesus."
posted by The Card Cheat at 7:36 AM on June 15, 2010


I don't understand why they have him rising out of the water in the first place.

I think once you've gotten it in your head that you need to build a massive foam and fiberglass statute of Jesus next to the interstate that one can plausibly assume that you aren't making any sense.
posted by valkyryn at 7:40 AM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


I Can't Believe It's Not Savior!
posted by tzikeh at 7:42 AM on June 15, 2010 [4 favorites]


If there turns out to be a God and a heaven and a hell, we'll all be having a great party.

That pretty much sums up my hopes for the afterlife. (You do get used to hellfire, right, I mean, eventually? Like being in Arizona for a week. Sucks at first, but after a couple of days, you're like, eh.)
posted by John of Michigan at 7:43 AM on June 15, 2010


And CROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:46 AM on June 15, 2010 [9 favorites]


Today, the Son of God...

*sunglasses*

became a hunka-hunka-burning-love.

YEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH

posted by Halloween Jack at 7:51 AM on June 15, 2010


I can't stop laughing at how the metal frame of "Touchdown Jesus" looks exactly like a field goal.
posted by Juicy Avenger at 7:52 AM on June 15, 2010


This far down the thread, and still no Wodan and Thor jokes?
posted by DreamerFi at 8:11 AM on June 15, 2010


Christ, what an ash-hole.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 8:12 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


This far down the thread, and still no Wodan and Thor jokes?

Pssst.
posted by zarq at 8:13 AM on June 15, 2010


Juicy A., here's your Tuesday theme song.
posted by Rat Spatula at 8:13 AM on June 15, 2010


Oh hot damn, I even searched for that before, but forgot to search including the comma, then realized it after I posted it and now I owe bwg a beer.

The end.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 8:13 AM on June 15, 2010


I guess they haven't learned the riddle of steel yet.

Crom laughs at your four winds. He laughs from his mountain.
posted by Esteemed Offendi at 8:14 AM on June 15, 2010


This far down the thread, and still no Wodan and Thor jokes?

Wodan and Thor and are drinking in a bar with 62ft Jesus. 'Here's mud in yer eye', 62ft Jesus says to Wodan and downs his drink. Time comes to pay the tab, Thor is totally hammered and Wodan says they're broke. 'Looks like the highballs are on me', says 62ft Jesus.
posted by kuujjuarapik at 8:24 AM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


Psst

Thanks zarq, missed that. You just restored my faith in the site...
posted by DreamerFi at 8:34 AM on June 15, 2010


I can't stop laughing

That blasphemous grin will be wiped from your face when charred MechaJesu wrests itself from its turfy bath and walks the land, casually flinging the unfaithful like Beanie Babies about the flat Ohio landscape.
posted by everichon at 8:39 AM on June 15, 2010 [3 favorites]


I was trying to ignore the "shifty" comment. While Odhin probably rides a Harley, and therefore knows how to shift, I don't think the Aesir are the shifty type.
posted by QIbHom at 8:41 AM on June 15, 2010


"'It sent goosebumps through my whole body because I am a believer,' said Levi Walsh, 29. 'Of all the things that could have been struck, I just think that that would be protected. ... It’s something that’s not supposed to happen, Jesus burning,' he said. 'I had to see it with my own eyes.'"*
posted by ericb at 8:55 AM on June 15, 2010


"It’s something that’s not supposed to happen, Jesus burning,' he said.

Hey Levi? This is not the first time this has happened.

Perhaps the Almighty is trying to tell you something, bud.
posted by zarq at 8:58 AM on June 15, 2010


It’s something that’s not supposed to happen until you have a rudimentary understanding of electricity.
posted by joe lisboa at 8:59 AM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


I've heard of this Jesus man.
posted by PHINC at 9:00 AM on June 15, 2010


From the 3rd link...

Church officials say it will cost $700,00 to resurrect the giant Jesus.

Despite the poor job security these days, I imagine some days it must be loads of fund to be a newspaper editor.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 9:06 AM on June 15, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't understand why they have him rising out of the water in the first place.

The first time He tried to walk on water didn't go so well and He had to take a mulligan.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:17 AM on June 15, 2010


I don't think the other gods are going to want to take public responsibility for this. It's bad for their image.

Now, if a Spartan covered in ashes shows up on video surveillance? Then we have something to worry about.

He's running out of deities to kill, after all.
posted by misha at 9:37 AM on June 15, 2010


Holy shit!

I live in Cincy, and the storm last night was insane, constant lightning, watched two buildings get hit, it was incredible.

This, however... I don't know. Weird as it may be I think the whole region is going to reel over it. It's kind of a thing around here. Everybody knows Touchdown Jesus.

Honestly, I can't believe I found out about it on MeFi.
posted by six-or-six-thirty at 9:42 AM on June 15, 2010


I've said it before, and I'll say it again: MC 900-ft Jesus is the best MC name in the history of MC names.

Also: Take heart! The Statue of Liberation Through Christ still stands!
posted by vibrotronica at 10:05 AM on June 15, 2010


Also: Take heart! The Statue of Liberation Through Christ still stands!
She depicts and combines Christianity with patriotism to showcase the origins of God’s design for America. She stands over 72 feet at the corner of Winchester and Kirby Road in Memphis.
You mean it really exists? Like in the real world, exists? I always thought the site was an elaborate religious metaphor.
posted by zarq at 10:09 AM on June 15, 2010


Any news on which particular god is suspected? Have any shifty looking characters with big hammers been seen in the vicinity?

I don't know, Thor has worked so hard to clean up his image, and he's been busy with his film lately, it just doesn't make sense for him to do this. I wonder if someone is trying to frame him. Does Loki have an alibi?
posted by homunculus at 10:11 AM on June 15, 2010


Oh yes, it exists.
posted by vibrotronica at 10:17 AM on June 15, 2010


What a bummer. I'm pretty anti-religion, but I love big, wacked out stuff like this. I'll bet that there are plenty of non-Christians in Ohio who are sad right now. (On preview, what six-or-six-thirty said) Let's hope they rebuild it to last.

.
posted by brundlefly at 10:17 AM on June 15, 2010


vibrotronica: "Also: Take heart! The Statue of Liberation Through Christ still stands!"

Wow. That is brilliant. I must see it.
posted by brundlefly at 10:18 AM on June 15, 2010


I always thought the site was an elaborate religious metaphor.

Well, I always thought that about Scripture, too, but there is a not insignificant number of human beings who fail to grasp the literal-metaphorical distinction. See also: Joe Literally Biden and every fundamentalist, like, ever.
posted by joe lisboa at 10:31 AM on June 15, 2010


Made me almost as happy as this.
posted by Mcable at 10:39 AM on June 15, 2010


She is 72 feet tall, and she has a lone tear dripping down her cheek, lamenting America's betrayal of Christ.

Lady Liberty: Shaming People Into Being More Religious Since 1999.
posted by zarq at 10:47 AM on June 15, 2010


MC 9,000-Degree Jesus.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 11:01 AM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


It figures that The Statue of Liberation Through Christ would be at World Overcomers Church. Are there still as many strip clubs on Winchester in Memphis as there used to be?
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:34 PM on June 15, 2010


Not really, Halloween Jack. It just hasn't been the same since Platinum Plus was shut down.
posted by vibrotronica at 1:40 PM on June 15, 2010


He is Resin.

(Sorry)
posted by Isosceles at 1:48 PM on June 15, 2010 [3 favorites]


Apparently police are now ticketing drivers who stop to take pictures of the ruins, something they weren't as interested in doing before the lightning strike.
posted by ardgedee at 2:01 PM on June 15, 2010


The 911 dispatcher is probably going to get crucified for her reaction.
posted by tizzie at 2:13 PM on June 15, 2010


And just like that, on the local news in Detroit, the wife of the pastor compared Jesus Christ to the Terminator.
posted by joe lisboa at 2:19 PM on June 15, 2010


I want to read the insurance claim:

Adjustor: You're claiming what now?
Pastor: Our Jesus burned down. It was worth $250,000
Adjustor: How did it burn down?
Pastor: An act of god.
Adjustor: ...
posted by T.D. Strange at 2:20 PM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oops, wrong link.
posted by joe lisboa at 2:21 PM on June 15, 2010 [1 favorite]


tizzie wrote: "The 911 dispatcher is probably going to get crucified for her reaction."
I didn't listen to the audio, but as written, it's pretty hilarious.
posted by wierdo at 3:33 PM on June 15, 2010


Maybe this was God's ironic rejoinder to Palin's: "Drill, Baby, Drill."

Listen closely and you can hear thousands of Richard Dawkins devotees around the world chanting in unison: "Burn, Baby, Burn!"
posted by saulgoodman at 7:22 AM on June 16, 2010


oh hai, mom called me about this when it happened. Prior commentary of mine on Jesuszilla, further musings on the FPP topic via MeCha here.

true story: Lawrence Bishop (the dude who owns all the adjacent land, runs the church, and built that abomination) is, or was, pretty high up in the hierarchy of Quarter Horse society in the Midwest. Kid/tween/teen lfr and family raised and showed QH back in the 70's and 80's, and LB was at that time a judge and prominent elder statesman of the local QH association. holy crap, they still got that ugly-assed 60's looking logo?!...

anyhoo, in my experience that cat was crazier than a sackful of weasels at the best of times. Real old-skool Billy Sunday rantin'-ravin' histrionic megalomaniacal bipolar kinda crazy. His horses were prety much batshit, too, so I'm guessing it's contagious.

to sum up: I'm betting LB rebuilds an even more grandiose tacky monument to himself than the first one was.
posted by lonefrontranger at 12:49 PM on June 16, 2010


I don't get why it's being called Big Butter Jesus. None of the Ohioans I know ever called it that.
posted by rubah at 6:15 PM on June 16, 2010


Had I known that ghastly thing was only made out of spray-foam and fiberglass, I might have been tempted to torch it ages ago.
posted by wreckingball at 10:08 AM on June 15 [+] [!]


wait wait waitaminute. so that thing was just 60-whatever feet of coat hangers and Great Stuff? Something tells me this is a new form of sculpture that could totally supplant chainsaw art for the flea-market set.
posted by toodleydoodley at 8:03 PM on June 17, 2010


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