El Paso

Statue of Pope Francis to be unveiled Friday in Juarez

Perches Funeral Home built the base of the statue

Remembering the Pope's Visit

EL PASO, Texas - A year ago Friday, the Borderland was in a frenzy over the visit of Pope Francis.

Thousands gathered as he made a day-long visit to Juarez as part of longer visit to Mexico.

To mark the historic event, a 20-foot statue will be unveiled Friday afternoon at the same spot, know as El Punto, where Pope Francis led a mass in front of thousands of people.

That statue was sculpted in Juarez, by Pedro Francisco Rodriguez. It weighs 2,200 pounds and made of bronze.

The base that the statue will rest on was built by Perches Funeral Home, the company that also built the altar for Pope Francis last year.

"When we were asked to construct the altar for the Pope, we were honored and took the task on as a religious mission," Salvador Perches said, owner of Perches Funeral Home.

"It's going to be a very special statue."

The base is a 6-foot block covered in marble and granite, the same material used for the pontiff's altar. The marble is from Italy and the granite is from Brazil.

On Thursday, the statue was hauled to El Punto on a flatbed and carried by a crane to its permanent location.

The bishop of Juarez, José Guadalupe Torres Campos, will lead a mass Friday afternoon at El Punto at 5 p.m., where the statue will be unveiled. 

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