You may not be aware of this, but there are several statues installed in various places of Jesus underwater. These statutes all depict Jesus Christ raising his face and arms towards Heaven and carry the name Christ of the Abyss. The original statue is bronze as is one of the most famous replicas. If you are a diver, then the original is something you should see. However, the popular replica is an excellent choice if you are not much for diving. Either way, people often describe the statute as being inspirational and something that is amazing to see. Find out more about where to see the Christ of the Abyss statues and learn a bit about the background of this spiritual monument.
The Original Christ of the Abyss
The story of the Christ of the Abyss statue started in 1954. Guido Galletti, an Italian sculptor, created a statue of Jesus Christ made of clay in San Fruttuoso, Italy. He then cast it in bronze and intentionally sunk it in the Italian Riviera where a famous Italian diver, Dario Gonzatt, had died. It still stands in the same place today. This statue is a beautiful memorial to this diver and an incredible work of art.
You can find it sitting about 17 meters down at the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea between Camogli and Portofino. The original clay sculpture is located in Ravenna, Italy. It is on display at the National Museum of Underwater Activities.
Due to increased amounts of corrosion and the growth of crustaceans, the statue had to be removed from the water and restored back in 2003. A hand had been detached, most likely by an anchor from a passing ship, which had to be replaced. However, all things considered, this Jesus statue had faired quite well for the age and location it was in. The statue was returned to the water with a new base on July 17th, 2004.
The Most Notable Copy
While there are several copies and replications of the statute all over the world in and out of the water, the most notable legitimate copy is located in the Florida Keys off Key Largo in Pennekamp State Park. This is the third casting from the original clay sculpture.
This copy was given to the Underwater Society of America in 1962 and placed in 1965. It is 25 feet deep. The statue is dedicated in memory of Michael Kevorian, who was a pioneer in diving in the area.
A photographer was on a dive and had seen this statue of Jesus and had to take a photo. He explained that he was not a religious man, but the experience was one that he would never be able to forget. He said it was inspirational and felt like Jesus was blessing the area and the sea life while offering protection to the reefs.
It is a favorite of divers because it is covered with sponges and coral. It has essentially become a part of the reef system there. This particular statue was in part 3 of the Netflix Original series Bloodline. In Season 1, Episode 3, the actor playing Danny Rayburn is seen taking guests at his family’s inn, Rayburn House, snorkeling at Christ of the Abyss in Florida. If you plan to watch this series, be sure to look for this statue.
The Second Copy
There is a second Jesus sculpture cast from the same mold as the original bronze statue that exists off the coast of St. George’s, Grenada. This was a gift from the navy of Genoa for assisting in rescuing the crew of the Italian vessel Bianca C, that was destroyed by fire in the port of St. George’s. The sculpture was placed underwater on October 22, 1961. The gift was well received and is now a tourist attraction to see when scuba diving.
There are many trips to the locations of the Christ of the Abyss statutes that will let you get a glimpse of them. They have become so popular that tourists come to these locations just to see them. Whether you believe in Jesus or not, this is definitely something incredible worth seeing. It has been something to share since 1954, and it is an inspirational monument to the man who originally made this beautiful sculpture. If you are ever in one of these areas, I recommend taking the time to go and see these statues. You won’t regret this decision.