Okay, I know it’s not a church but every time we drive from Dayton to Cincinnati on I-75 we would pass the eye catching 62 foot tall “King of Kings” Jesus statue located at the Solid Rock Church. It was built in 2004 for $250,000. Sadly, it was destroyed by lightning in June 2010. A new replacement 52 foot tall statue called “Lux Mundi” or Light of the World was built and dedicated in September 2012. The design has Jesus stepping forward with his arms open with a welcoming gesture which, when driving by, always comforts me, makes me think of the real Jesus and makes me pray.
Expedition Team: Dave Miller, Rosie Miller, Holly Miller, Jacque Miller, Matt Miller, Shane Miller
Date: 1967, 1999, 2013, November 2017
At a point of land jutting into Matanzas Bay, the great cross is made of stainless steel plates packed in concrete in its lower third to keep it from falling over during hurricanes. The Great Cross was built in 1966, stands 208 feet tall and marks the place where Christianity was first permanently established in the United States in 1565 (six months before the Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth Rock. The cross is illuminated by powerful lights at night making a striking display. We walked the grounds, a beautiful greenspace with flowers and palm trees. Nearby was the National Shrine of Our Lady of La Leche at Mission Nombre de Dios. Nearby is a Bronze statue of Father Francisco Lopez de Mendoza Garjales, chaplain of the Mendendez fleet who celebrated the first mass in America at St. Augustine, was the first missionary and began work at America’s first mission. We visited the nearby Cathedral Basilica of St. Augustine (Photo#4). Departing from this holy place we headed to the local beach where we saw God’s handiwork: a turtle nesting in the sand and a handful of starfish (Photo#2 & #3).
Expedition Team: Dave Miller, Rosie Miller, Jacque Miller, Matt Miller, Holly Miller, Shane Miller
Date: July 6, 2003
Our nine state, 14 day trip began at Minneapolis/St. Paul as I finally got to see my favorite baseball team the Minnesota Twins play a home game in the Metrodome. We attended mass at this beautiful copper-clad domed church built from 1906 to 1915 here at the state capital of St. Paul. The church is named after Saint Paul, the greatest missionary of the early Christian Church.
Enjoyed mass at the “Oldest Church in the Dakota’s”. It was a small church named after Mother Teresa known for her charity work among the poorest of the poor in India. The church had a beautiful painting of Jesus “Ascension”.
While vacationing and scuba diving in the Bahamas at the Sandals Resort to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary we attended mass at this historical church whose original cornerstone was laid in August 1875. Although the church has been rebuilt and is now more fortified in case of a hurricane, it still contains the original bell tower. Inside it has beautiful stained glass biblical scenes. Just by chance the Archbishop of the Bahamas gave the sermon that day.
Expedition Team: Dave Miller, Rosie Miller Date: October 6, 2019
Rosie & I camped at the Tucson KOA then attended Catholic Mass at the historic Mission San Xavier del Bac, an old Spanish Mission built in 1797. This church was beautiful outside and inside and looked it could be in a western movie scene. There was no air conditioning and the acoustics were not very good. The mass was great with some of it in Spanish. The parishioners were 50% of Spanish/Mexican descent.
In the back of the church we were shown an old original door with the date 1797 (Photo#7)). Inside was intricate, beautiful carvings, paintings, statues and a mummy of an alleged Spanish Saint. This was an oddity to me as parishioners would file by the mummy (Photo#8), kiss and give the mask over the face and give the sign of the cross or they would raise the mummy’s head and do the same thing. Outside just east of the church was a trail leading up a hill that had a white cross on top (Photo#9). On top of the church I saw a large hawk next to the cross (Last Photo).
After mass we ate delicious Mexican burritos sold outside at booths by parishioners.
Investigation Team: Dave Miller, Rosie Miller, Jacque Miller
Date: July 2017
In town camping and to run the Neil Armstrong 5K “Run to the Moon” race we discovered and went to mass at this beautiful church built in 1910. It is an historic site because of its well preserved Romanesque revival architecture. With it’s towers and turrets it is one of several cross-tipped churches in southwest Ohio. Inside were several beautiful paintings of Jesus from scenes in the Bible.
While camping and hiking at Hocking Hills State Park in June of 2018, we found this Roman Catholic Church built in 1897. The Catholic community in the area actually began in 1837. Built from stone and brick, the 97 X 55 foot sanctuary included a tower. The bell that hangs in the tower was made in England in 1862. Across the street from the church is an old cemetery which includes the grave of Daniel Hawkins, a veteran of the War of 1812.