April 6th, 2011
02:06 PM ET

Museum of divine statues to open in Lakewood, Ohio

The final touches are being completed on a new museum scheduled to open in Lakewood, on Sunday, April 10, from noon until 5 p.m.

The Museum of Divine Statues is the first of its kind in the United States: A museum dedicated entirely to Catholic statuary and religious artifacts.

"The statue restoration started as a hobby," said Lou McClung, museum founder and curator.

Seven years ago, he began rescuing and repairing old statues for churches across the country.

Read the full story from WJW-TV
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief

soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. Speedy Bubbles - Bubble Shooter

    This posting was saved like a favorite :), I like your blog!

    January 26, 2012 at 3:15 am |
  2. GodIsTheWay

    I would LOVE to go to this, but my wife refuses to travel.. sucks.

    January 25, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
  3. Obama Bubbles

    This is a great article. I will take more time studying this topic.

    January 25, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
  4. ME

    "You shall not carve idols for yourselves, in the shape if anything in the sky above or on the earth below or in the waters beneath the earth; you shall not bow down before them or worship them"
    There is no doubt about it. You shall not have images or statues. The Lord instructed us to pray . We are to pray to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit...not to Saints. You do not need statues to remind you of the Lord or to pray and communicate with Him.

    April 9, 2011 at 11:30 pm |
    • CatholicMom


      Our Father is the Father of the living, not the dead. Those who are dead in their sin are no longer members of Jesus Christ’s body. Those who are members [due to their Baptism] are the living but they can be cut off when they are no longer abiding in Him. All the living can pray for us…the living in this world and the living in the next age…all are members of the Communion of Saints.

      We have this great cloud of witnesses cheering us on! Hebrews 12-1 And therefore we also having so great a cloud of witnesses over our head, laying aside every weight and sin which surrounds us, let us run by patience to the fight proposed to us:

      We are a family [Communion of Saints] and those in Heaven do not need our prayers as they are already in Heaven but we need all prayers through Jesus Christ that we can get! Asking a member of the body to pray [intercede] for another member of the family has always been a good thing.

      It wasn’t until the Reformation that people wanted to severe themselves from this body and go their own way. They speak of a lifestyle that does not include anyone except themselves and Jesus Christ. But Jesus Christ does not want us to be self-centered but to devote ourselves to the well-being of our neighbor who is every person in the world which includes all members of the Body of Christ.

      Jesus Christ wants us to empty ourselves and to become Christ-like….He wants us to do this out of love of our neighbor…when we do this, we are doing the will of the Father. This is how we have a personal relationship with the Father.

      If images were not to be made, God would not have ordered them be made. [Ex 25:18-19, Num 21:8-9, 1Kgs 6:23-29, 1Kgs 7:25-45] We are just not to make them for worship! Every piece of art is an image! Would God gift us with the ability to be creative and make beauty in His world that He created so beautifully? Are we not to use our gifts to be Christ like? Even buildings are art...they are images!

      We are not worshipping the images we create. Why is it ok for some protestant ecclesical communities to have an empty cross or a ‘picture’ of Jesus’ face hanging somewhere in their ecclesial building but they cannot have one in their homes? Some have a cross on the outside of their building or on their signage…are they not worshipping that image if they believe we are….because they say no one can have such images without worshipping them? A beautifully crafted Bible is an image...how many worship their Bibles?

      April 10, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
  5. CatholicMom

    No, Reality,
    .....the heavenly chocolate chip ones!

    April 8, 2011 at 1:09 pm |
    • Reality

      Is there a difference when it comes to fasting during Lent? Double Dark Chocolate Shame!!! 🙂

      April 8, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
  6. jimtanker

    So much for commandments 2 and 3. Want to break any more?

    April 8, 2011 at 5:51 am |
  7. CatholicMom

    For those who think Catholics worship statues, let me try to explain how it is for us.

    We belong to a family. [Communion of Saints!] We like to remember them in a variety of ways. One of those ways is through 3-dimensional art.
    Other ways are through paintings and in some cases actual photographs.

    If you believe Catholics must be worshipping these items whether they be in their Churches or in their homes then that must be what you do if you have anything in your homes or churches that remind you of your past family members/loved ones. Look around, start with your home…do you maintain photos [of grandma and grandpa or other loved ones], sitting on a shelf or up on the wall? Do you frame the picture and keep it clean and think about them when you look upon the picture? Do you have vidios or other means of seeing loved ones from your past…dvd’s with their voices on them…hearing them….viewing them from time to time and enjoying the remembrances? Do you have photos tucked in your Bible that you happen upon from time to time and linger there awhile…read their favorite verse, etc?

    Do you have a favorite photo of a loved one who died young and when your eyes fall upon his picture, your eyes well up with tears out of love for that person and you hold his picture to your heart in that moment? And do you hold your Bible to your heart and close your eyes in prayer…is your Bible your idol of choice? It is a man made item as are statues and pictures……

    Do you have cemetery headstones at the graves of loved ones that when you bow your head and say a prayer are you worshipping the headstone or the body of the loved one that you placed there? Why do you put flowers there every Memorial Day? Are you worshipping the headstone or the loved one?

    Do you visit places of interest because of the history there….do you gaze upon statues of our forefathers? Are you worshipping them, or thinking about how they affected the world?

    I could go on, but hopefully you realize that I do not think you are worshipping these things because it is foolish and would be idolatry….Catholics do not worship statues either…we don’t even worship who they represent…except for the crucifix which represents Christ Crucified…and we do worship Him but not the statue…He is real, the statue only brings Him to mind.

    Have a Happy Easter!

    April 7, 2011 at 10:10 am |
    • Reality

      Saving Christians from the Big Resurrection/Easter Con:

      From that famous passage: In 1 Corinthians 15 St. Paul reasoned, "If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith."

      Even now Catholic/Christian professors of theology are questioning the bodily resurrection of the simple, preacher man aka Jesus.

      To wit;

      From a major Catholic university's theology grad school white-board notes:

      "Heaven is a Spirit state or spiritual reality of union with God in love, without earthly – earth bound distractions.
      Jesus and Mary's bodies are therefore not in Heaven.

      Most believe that it to mean that the personal spiritual self that survives death is in continuity with the self we were while living on earth as an embodied person.

      Again, the physical Resurrection (meaning a resuscitated corpse returning to life), Ascension (of Jesus' crucified corpse), and Assumption (Mary's corpse) into heaven did not take place.

      The Ascension symbolizes the end of Jesus' earthly ministry and the beginning of the Church.

      Only Luke's Gospel records it. The Assumption ties Jesus' mission to Pentecost and missionary activity of Jesus' followers The Assumption has multiple layers of symbolism, some are related to Mary's special role as "Christ bearer" (theotokos). It does not seem fitting that Mary, the body of Jesus' Virgin-Mother (another biblically based symbol found in Luke 1) would be derived by worms upon her death. Mary's assumption also shows God's positive regard, not only for Christ's male body, but also for female bodies." "

      "In three controversial Wednesday Audiences, Pope John Paul II pointed out that the essential characteristic of heaven, hell or purgatory is that they are states of being of a spirit (angel/demon) or human soul, rather than places, as commonly perceived and represented in human language. This language of place is, according to the Pope, inadequate to describe the realities involved, since it is tied to the temporal order in which this world and we exist. In this he is applying the philosophical categories used by the Church in her theology and saying what St. Thomas Aquinas said long before him."

      The Vatican quickly embellished this story with a lot CYAP.

      Of course, we all know that angels are really mythical "pretty wingie talking thingies".

      With respect to rising from the dead, we also have this account:

      o An added note: As per R.B. Stewart in his introduction to the recent book, The Resurrection of Jesus, Crossan and Wright in Dialogue,
      o p.4
      o "Reimarus (1774-1778) posits that Jesus became sidetracked by embracing a political position, sought to force God's hand and that he died alone deserted by his disciples. What began as a call for repentance ended up as a misguided attempt to usher in the earthly political kingdom of God. After Jesus' failure and death, his disciples stole his body and declared his resurrection in order to maintain their financial security and ensure themselves some standing."
      o p.168. by Ted Peters:
      1. Even so, asking historical questions is our responsibility. Did Jesus really rise from the tomb? Is it necessary to have been raised from the tomb and to appear to his disciples in order to explain the rise of early church and the transcription of the bible? Crossan answers no, Wright answers, yes. "

      o So where are the bones"? As per Professor Crossan's analyses in his many books, the body of Jesus would have ended up in the mass graves of the crucified, eaten by wild dogs, with lime in a shallow grave, or under a pile of stones.

      April 7, 2011 at 10:58 am |
    • Peace2All


      I'm curious as to what your thoughts are to @Normon's posting above. I posted a question to him, but no response yet.

      Sincerely curious...



      April 7, 2011 at 10:35 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Hello, Peace2All,

      I do not see how “Divine Statues’ indicates idol worshipers.

      I am going to have coffee now with one of my divine chocolate cookies right now! Let me see,….no, I am not worshipping the cookie..or the coffee… but I will thank God for this glorious morning, my wonderful coffee and for the best cookie in the world!

      April 8, 2011 at 8:10 am |
    • CatholicMom

      I do not think that 'divine statues' indicates idol worship.
      And now I will have a wonderful cup of coffee and a divine chocolate chip cookie on this glorious morning! No, I am not worshipping the cookie! But I am thanking God for the coffee, cookie, and beautiful morning!

      April 8, 2011 at 10:11 am |
    • CatholicMom

      When my first post didn't show up I thought...this is strange...I knew I wrote to you...but thought I must have failed to send it...well, when I rewrote...they both posted at once on my screen! I will never understand computers...but I still believe they exist! Yes!
      Anyway, I see I failed to mention that it was a chocolate chip cookie in the first post...not a chocolate one...but the chocolate ones are almost as divine as the chip ones!

      April 8, 2011 at 10:19 am |
    • Reality

      Chocolate cookies during Lent? For shame!!!!

      April 8, 2011 at 12:53 pm |
    • gerald

      Once again Reality resorts to name dropping and dump trucking info that has no bearing on Catholic theology. He elevates the heretic in order to strip the faith from the weak. Reality, if you do not repent of this hell is deep.

      April 13, 2011 at 9:08 am |
  8. Frederica

    There should be Museum of Christian Heritages all over America. That's what we need before USA goes down with her uncontrollable ignorance and hedonism.

    April 7, 2011 at 4:35 am |
    • bp

      I think we already do. It's called churches. Thankfully attendance is down.

      April 7, 2011 at 3:10 pm |
    • Frederica

      Bp, you are right in a way. Non-religious is growing fastest for now in USA. The best days for America are over at present rate. Face the pollution like a man. But Christians are still growing by conversion. It's liberal churches that are dying.

      April 7, 2011 at 10:26 pm |
  9. JD

    I bet this place does as well as The Museum of Used Taco Wrappers. And Heritage USA.

    April 6, 2011 at 11:23 pm |
  10. Dorianmode

    Interesting that the article misspelled the word altar, (a noun), (they used the verb alter). Why are they calling it a museum of Divine Statues ? Statues now possess a divine nature ?

    Even though I may be a skeptic, there is no doubt that these people say they believe in the bible. Chapter 20 of the Book of Exodus reads as follows : "You shall not carve idols for yourselves, in the shape if anything in the sky above or on the earth below or in the waters beneath the earth; you shall not bow down before them or worship them.

    Seems a bit contradictory, no ?

    April 6, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
  11. GSA

    @Reality – "you hope there are few statues of Mohammed" or "a few statues of Mohammed"? Just wondering. Usually you hate religions equally but you either made a typo or are maybe showing some love for religions not called Islam. Just curious if you were thinking of going back to your Catholic roots and dropping the knowledge of JC on us.

    April 6, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
    • Reality

      Hope there are a few statues of Mohammed. Oops, there goes the museum!!!

      April 7, 2011 at 12:02 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Statues, statutes, it really doesn't matter. The place is only going to get 7 visitors a year, and 6 of them will be angry that dad took them there instead of Disneyland. Oh yeah, you are all going to burn in hell.


      April 7, 2011 at 2:29 am |
    • HeavenSent

      The fake heavensent is still a punk even during the wee hours of the morning.


      April 7, 2011 at 6:27 am |
    • Lycidas

      @Reality- Again....study up on the Islamic faith. No statues of the Mohammed.

      April 7, 2011 at 9:31 am |
    • JohnR

      Lycidas, do you really think that Reality doesn't know that? That's the whole point of his joke.

      April 7, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
    • Lycidas

      JohnR-From the copy/paste king like Reality....who knows.

      April 8, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • Reality

      The Shadow knows!!!

      April 8, 2011 at 11:48 pm |
  12. Normon

    Wouldn't "Divine Statues" by definition indicate idol worshipers? Shouldn't it be 'Museum of Statues of the Divine'?
    Or am I just nitpicking the semitics?

    April 6, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
    • Peace2All


      I'm not getting your 'fine distinction' you're trying to make here, as a matter of 'semantics.'...?



      April 6, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
    • JohnR

      Yep, it's an idolatry museum for sure!

      April 7, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • Wordy Wordpicker


      There is a difference in the terms... "Divine Statues" suggests that the statues *are* themselves 'divine'. "Statues of the Divine" suggests statues depicting 'divine' beings/subjects.

      Actually, neither is appropriate. They should just be called, "Religious Statues" (unless they are using the word 'divine' to merely mean exquisite or lovely, but that is sure a stretch).

      April 8, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
  13. Reality

    Hope there are few statues of Mohammed. Oops!!!

    April 6, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • JJ

      It does say "museum of divine statues"...... There are plenty of Vishnu, Buddha, Greek and Roman God statuary in the world. Will the Flying Spaghetti Monster get in?

      April 6, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
    • Lycidas

      @Reality- I can't tell if you are being ignorant or sarcastic. Let's assume sarcastic but with ignorance included. No statues of Mohammed exist in the Muslim world. Why? No graven images.

      April 7, 2011 at 9:30 am |
  14. JJ

    I like the idea of preserving the artwork of the statues.

    I really, really like that religions are moving into museums, and are taking their place in history.

    April 6, 2011 at 2:58 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      There is only one true one and Jesus is the only way. The rest are going to hell.

      April 6, 2011 at 3:10 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      And you're trolltastic!

      April 6, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
    • JJ

      Yeah, yeah. We've all heard it before: "my way or the highway."

      Unfortunately, the bible was written by uneducated bronze age humans who knew very little about the world in which they lived. So, not afraid of "hell" or the boogie man either.


      April 6, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • Ed

      is this the real HeavenSent or the fake HeavenSent

      I guess if its the fake they'll lie nevermind

      April 6, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Doc, you must have answered 6 or 7 of the phony heavensent's posts with your hatred spewing from your keyboard. If you have something to say to the real HeavenSent, here I am.


      April 7, 2011 at 6:19 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Here JJ, try and figure these scriptures out.

      Genesis 2:7: "And the Lord God formed man of the DUST OF THE GROUND, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul." Surely, you don't take Genesis 2:7 seriously? Do you?

      Psalm 8:8: ". . . whatsoever passeth through the PATHS OF THE SEAS." How did David (the writer of Psalms) know, over 2,000 years ago, there were "paths in the seas"? David probably never even saw an ocean!

      Ecclesiastes 1:7: "All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again." How did the writer of Ecclesiastes know the water cycle of condensation and evaporation in 1000 B.C.?

      Job 38:19: "Where is THE WAY where light dwelleth?" How come Job didn't say where is THE PLACE where light dwelleth? Because light is always moving. How did Job know something in 1500 B.C. ?

      Ecclesiastes 1:6: "The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again ACCORDING TO HIS CIRCUITS." How did the writer of Ecclesiastes know the wind traveled within circuits? How did he know with their so-called limited knowledge thousands of years ago?

      Leviticus 17:11: For the life of the flesh is in the blood. What Moses wrote in 1490 B.C. written thousands of years ago, by men with such limited knowledge?


      April 7, 2011 at 6:22 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Ed, it was the fake heavensent spewing his nonsense and having himself posted as another handle spewing more hatred..

      Thanks for noticing.


      April 7, 2011 at 6:24 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Hatred spewing from my keyboard?
      No hatred here, only (sometimes flippant) logic.
      If I've taken the troll bait it is because one condemnation from a fiery pulpit sounds much the same as another.

      April 7, 2011 at 8:39 am |
    • Lycidas

      @JJ- Actually, a great deal of the Bible, in fact the majority of it, was written in the Iron Age and not the Bronze Age. And from roughly after the time of Solomon forward, the ppl that were written in the Bible resided in the early Iron Age and beyond. So get it together.

      And your prejudice is noted on knowledge. Will you now hold up the likes of Socrates, Thutmoses III and other ancients up to your current understanding of the world as well? Is that really fair?

      April 7, 2011 at 9:28 am |
  15. Doc Vestibule

    It's idolaterrific!

    April 6, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.