Sunday, June 21, 2009

The Pope's Revenge

This is one of the better stories we have heard while touring Europe (I apologize in advance if I don't get all the details quite right). In Berlin, they built a TV tower in the east (communist) side. It was intended to be a symbol of the city and in some ways, communism.

So they begun building it and quickly found out that they were overmatched. Berlin sits in somewhat swampy land and it proved to be too much of a challenge for the East German engineers. They quietly brought in some Swedish (capitalist) engineers to finish the project.

The tower is quite the sight and can be seen from almost anywhere in the city. Around this time the government had also cracked down on churches and had removed all crosses from the eastern side. As it turns out, when the sunlight hits the tower, it forms a giant cross. People began calling this the Pope's revenge for taking the crosses down. The East German government tried lots of things to scatter the light but in the end declared that it was not a cross, but rather a giant plus sign for communism.

We happened to hit Berlin on a beautiful, sunny day and we could very clearly see the cross on the tower.