The 199 foot cross at Central Assembly of God Church in Haughton was dedicated Sunday. A permit to build the cross was originally denied by the MPC because zoning regulations say that a structure in that area can’t be taller than 45 feet.
The Church then appealed to the Police Jury for an exception. This met with a mixed response from members. Wanda Bennett was afraid that it would open a Pandora’s box, allowing giant billboards to be erected.
According to The Times, at a meeting in October Pastor Andy Harris appeared to be threatening political retribution when he said "The common man on the street is going to be looking at who's for the cross and who's not, and we all understand the political ramifications."
In this case, I believe that the police jury made the right decision.
"I was pretty neutral on it," said Bossier Parish Police Jury member Barry Butler said. "My view was: it's their money; it's their land. If they want to spend it that way, it's their option." In the end, the Police Jury allowed the exception.
While this may not have been my choice either, I agree. It’s their land, their church and their money, let them spend it as they will.
A lot of comments have arisen at the Times website, saying basically that the money could have been used for better things, such as feeding and clothing the hungry. While that may be true, it was not our decision to make, it was theirs.
The cross is very striking, even from a distance. It even has a website of its own. There is also a Facebook fan page with over 800 members.
What do you think, should the Police Jury have allowed the exception to build?