Massive statue of John Paul II unveiled in Poland
The sculpture of the late Pope John Paul II during the unveiling ceremony in Czestochowa, Poland, on Saturday, April 13, 2013. (AP / Czarek Sokolowski)
The Associated Press
Published Saturday, April 13, 2013 11:23AM EDT
Last Updated Saturday, April 13, 2013 10:48PM EDT
CZESTOCHOWA, Poland - A giant statue of the late Pope John Paul II billed as the world's tallest has been unveiled in southern Poland.
Archbishop Waclaw Depo unveiled the statue of the Polish pontiff Saturday in the southern city of Czestochowa, the home of this predominantly Catholic nation's most famous pilgrimage site, the Jasna Gora monastery.
The white fiberglass figure rises about five stories, or nearly 14 metres (more than 45 feet), on a hill overlooking the city.
It was funded by a businessman, Leszek Lyson, in gratitude for what he believes was an intervention by the late pontiff in saving his drowning son.
John Paul, who led the Roman Catholic church for 27 years before dying in 2005, remains a respected figure in his homeland.