The city of Vladivostok, the largest city in far eastern Russia, would like to erect an enormous statue of Jesus Christ atop a hill that was once set aside for a monument to the Soviet communist leader, Vladimir Lenin. Although the construction has not yet been authorized by the Russian Orthodox Church, the prospect of a large statue of Christ overlooking the Pacific Ocean has many of the Russian faithful excited.
In 1972, Soviet officials ordered the construction of a 98-ft-tall bronze statue of Lenin to be placed on the site, with a second statue of Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin planned for a neighboring hill. Difficulties with the planning, however, caused the projects to be postponed repeatedly until they were ultimately scrapped around 1990. Since then the hills have been left bare.