A split decision

When mayor of  Split and businessman Zeljko Kerum announced plans last week to build the world’s biggest statue of Jesus overlooking the city, they were not greeted with universal approval. Despite the fact that the wealthy businessman would finance the statue himself, many saw it a a cynical attempt to win favour in forthcoming parliamentary elections. If so, then it failed quite spectacularly.  Almost immediately local people set up a Facebook page entitled ‘Kerum, in Jesus’ name don’t build Jesus’, which has received in excess of 4000 ‘likes’. Some visitors to the page called for the money to be spent on solar panels or windmills instead.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, a young couple in Anderson County, South Carolina, appeared to find the face of Jesus on their Walmart receipt. (See below)  They saw this as a direct response to their Pastor’s challenge from the pulpit about  ‘would you recognize God if you saw him?’

Quite apart from the fact that the face of Jesus above looks more like the face of a recently deceased terrorist to me, I am deeply sceptical. Do we really think Jesus is made somehow more present in the world by giant statues or freak images on till receipts? Earlier this year I featured an image of Jesus which I feel has far more resonance. If you click on the image above you will see it. I believe he is seen far more in the enacted faith and witness of his people, especially in adverse circumstances, than ever by these other means.

Where will you see Jesus today?