Father Lourdes F. Costa - El Paso, Texas
Padre Lourdes F. Costa - El Paso, Tejas

Father Lourdes F. Costa - El Paso, Texas

Father Lourdes F. Costa arrived in El Paso, Texas in 1912. He was a local parish priest of the Smeltertown Church of San Jose for twenty years, when the Pope summoned parishes in all parts of the world to build sacrosancts or material monuments. Father Costa envisioned a statue on top of the Sierra de Cristo Rey (formerly known as the Cerro de los Muleros, Mule Drivers Mountain), in Sunland Park, New Mexico. He turned in the direction of the conical peak outside of his window every morning. He always thought that such a location was a perfect setting for a monument to Christ the King, the Prince of Peace. First, a twelve foot high wooden cross was erected in 1933 and a couple of month later it was replaced by an iron cross. In 1939, a 29 ft. tall limestone statue of Christ by sculptor Urbici Soler was erected on top of Mount Cristo Rey. It can be seen from all three states and it serves as a shrine to thousands of faithful in the El Paso and Southern New Mexico area. Consequently, Father Costa had realized his dream to inspire the people who live at the crossroads of three states with a lasting symbol of hope and peace.

Area: Central / Smeltertown

Collection: Casasola Photograph Collection

Source: University of Texas at El Paso Library - Special Collections Department

Reference ID: PH041-03-00127

Uploaded by: El Paso Museum of History


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