Plans to build the world’s largest statue of St. Patrick on top of Croagh Patrick in Co. Mayo have been abandoned.
Canadian sculptor Timothy Schmalz had proposed to erect a bronze statue of Saint Patrick, over 100 feet in height, at the top of Croagh Patrick where the patron saint is said to have spent 40 days and nights fasting back in 441AD.
However, speaking to the Mayo News, Schmalz said resistance from locals has caused him to call off the project.
“I have decided not to continue to build the world’s largest St. Patrick on the Reek, as I have received so much hateful opposition to a project in which I intended to celebrate Irish culture and spirituality."
Schmalz, whose work focuses on Christian themes, said the statue may be erected elsewhere in Ireland.
“I apologize to those people who may have thought I was being disrespectful to the sacred history of the place and am now looking to place the proposed statue somewhere else in Ireland.”
Schmalz had compared his project to the Statue of Liberty, which was gifted to American citizens by the people of France back in 1868. He has also designed the largest statue of St. Patrick in existence in Ireland, at Our Lady of Knock, in Co. Mayo.