Over a decade after Hurricane Sandy ripped through the northeastern Atlantic seaboard, one coastal community with deep Christian roots is rebuilding its pier in the shape of a massive cross.
The town of Ocean Grove is not shy about its religiosity and is proudly set to unveil the new pier which juts out into the ocean waters while featuring the iconic design of one of the most recognizable symbols in the world.
The pier was rebuilt, according to Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association president Michael Badger, with 100% private donations and cost an estimated $2 million. It was set to be opened to the public on April 15th.
And while Badger would go on to explain that the pier was not specifically constructed to resemble the Christian cross representing where Jesus died for humanity’s sins – he explained that the design process was “organic” and his team set out simply to build the “best pier” possible – it is impossible to overlook the final outcome.
“The more we thought about it [and] prayed about it, [the more] the inspiration came for the present design,” he said in an interview with Fox News Digital.
“We’re always going to be welcoming and seeking for people to be engaged by the gospel – and that’s what we have to offer. It’s functional,” Badger continued. “But it became obvious to us that it is in the shape of a cross — and how fitting it is for our Christian mission.”
He later added, “So this is just a culmination of a design process that sought to create an optimal pier — and we do see the blessing of God’s hand in this.”
Fox News reported on the pier’s impressive size and fortitude. The final product, which underwent initial construction in just September of last year, measures over 500 feet in length and extends 24 feet across at the two arms. It is said to be completely “stormproof” in the event a future hurricane or similar powerful weather system moves through the area.
The pier exists for people to fish, relax, or enjoy nature.
“There are some people who feel that, in this day and age, Christians should take the crosses and move them inside their buildings and close the doors,” Badger would go on to say in the interview. “And that’s not a sentiment that we agree [with].”
“Christianity is a global faith … We’re always going to be welcoming and seeking for people to be engaged by the gospel — and that’s what we have to offer.”
Badger also noted that while everyone in America has the special right to practice whatever faith they choose, that doesn’t mean Christianity specifically needs to be banned from the public sphere. He said that the cross could still be a “part of the American fabric,” as Americans are free to exercise religion “even in public spaces. “We can’t hide our faith,” he stated. “It’s something we live out day to day, and I would be concerned if there ever came a day when that wasn’t allowed.”
Badger went on, saying, “Anyone is allowed out on the pier, and we would celebrate them going out.”
Featured image: Screen shot from embedded video.
"*" indicates required fields