Serenity Cross Poster – Size 22″ x 28″
This stunning depiction of The Great Cross in St. Augustine, Florida, was taken by author/photographer, Karen Harvey. It appears on the cover of her award winning book, St. Augustine Enters the Twenty-First Century, a pictorial history.
The cross was erected under the direction of Archbishop Joseph P. Hurley, then Bishop of the Diocese of St. Augustine. The top portion was dedicated on September 8, 1965, in commemoration of the 400th anniversary of America’s First City. Raising was completed in September 1966.
The cross represents the saying of the first Catholic mass in what is now the United States. On September 8, 1565, Pedro Menéndez de Avilés set foot on the grounds now known as Mission Nombre de Dios situated at the foot of the majestic symbol. On landing day Menéndez claimed the site for Spain and the Catholic Church. A mass was said and he knelt to kiss a wooden cross presented to him by Father Francisco López de Mendoza Grajales, the chaplain of Menéndez’s expedition and founding pastor of the parish of St. Augustine. A statue of Father López, a diocesan priest from Jerez de Frontera, Spain, stands on a pedestal near the Great Cross.
At 208 feet tall, the cross is the soaring symbol of Christianity and marks the founding of the first permanent European settlement in the continental United States. It weighs approximately 70 tons and consists of 200 stainless steel panels in various sizes. The loftiest sections of the cross contain 1.6 ft. x 10 ft. panels 3/16 in. thick, while 4 ft. x 10 ft. and 5/16 in. thick panels cover the foundational sector. To prevent substantial damage to the Great Cross, the bottom half is filled with concrete. Lights mounted from the ground provide illumination of the Cross at night and often serve as a navigational aid to mariners.
Visit www.missionandshrine.org and www.ancientcityechoes.com for poster orders or information about Books by Karen Harvey.