Most people haven’t heard of the Provo Easter Cross because it has been lying in pieces on the mountainside for the past 40 years. But the people who were around back then have some wonderful memories of it.
The Easter Cross was built by Provo City in 1939 as part of a yearly interdenominational Easter sunrise service. The event brought together Utah County’s various Christian denominations in a celebration of the resurrection of Jesus. BYU professors, Protestant ministers and city officials worked together on the event, which drew thousands. One old-timer remembers going to a BYU-sponsored sunrise service around 1948. The sunrise services were discontinued in 1951 due to weather issues, but people still liked to hike up and visit the Cross for picnics and such.
Sometime in the 1970s, vandals severely damaged the Cross, and it was bulldozed for safety reasons. It has been lying on the hillside for the last forty years.
The sight of the once-majestic Cross—lying in pieces, covered with graffiti, surrounded by beer cans, and used as a fire pit—was appalling. “I decided that I would do what I could to restore the Easter Cross.” says Niki Thornock, restoration organizer. She has arranged:
A new location in the East Lawn Memorial cemetery;
A crane to move it to the new location;
A stone-mason to rebuild it;
A bronze plaque to tell the story.
The Provo Community Congregational United Church of Christ (who started the sunrise services 80 years ago) is helping with the fundraising, your donation is tax deductible.
Please help restore our wonderful, historic Easter Cross.
Click on either of the images above to be taken directly to the fundraising site.
Additional history: The Easter Cross