The Branson Cross. That’s the name of an architectural wonderment that many believe will have more spiritual importance than the Statue of Liberty, the Golden Gate Bridge and the Archway to the West.
"This actually started as a vision that my dad had about 15 to 20 years ago," Kerry Brown, the man behind the project to build a 200-foot walk-through cross, told KY3. "He (my dad) was able to come into possession of the actual property that has the second tallest mountain in the Ozarks Mountains.”
An interdenominational Kingdom Legacy Project, the walk-through cross will showcase twin elevators that take visitors to the 17th floor with venues telling gospel story. The cross will be located atop a mountain where US Highway 65 intersects with Highway 160. Eight million visitors travel the major artery in and out of Branson, Mo. every year.
Through persistence and patience, the Browns petitioned Taney County for the right to build the monument. With approvals in hand, fundraising began. The project is being built and maintained solely through donations. The estimated cost is between $3 million and $5 million.
"One of the questions I have when I’m talking to people on the street about the cross is, 'When is it going to get built?' and I’m not sure when, but I know it’s going to get built because I’ve sat in too many meetings and watched the power of God work through the meetings," Mark Blackwell, who was on the Taney County Planning and Zoning Commission that approved the project four years ago, told KY3.
Brown’s prayer: that people who walk through the cross will have a personal encounter with God.
"I just want them to have a personal encounter with the Lord, whether it's just riding down the road and they are suddenly struck by it, and He speaks to them and makes Himself real to them, or whether it’s with the people who have genuine authentic Christian hearts at the base of the cross where they are taking it in, if they can leave and think, and scripture says, when we genuinely with all of our heart seek Him, He allows himself to be found,” Brown said.