Rio’s Emblematic Christ Is Suffering
Brazil’s iconic statue of the “Cristo Redentor” is one of the world’s best-known landmarks, yet few get to see it up close. The original idea for the monument was to rejoice in Rio’s Christianity in the face of rising secularism but, ever since, the Christ has become a popular tourist attraction. But the effect of 2 million annual visitors and the powerful weather have taken their toll on the 83-year-old statue. In January, the granite peak lost its middle fingertip and part of the back of its head to two direct lightning hits. Now the race is on to repair Rio’s favorite photo backdrop before the World Cup this summer.