Maybe it was God's not-so-subtle warning to Notre Dame's Touchdown Jesus, or perhaps it was just a coincidence. Either way, 270 miles south of South Bend, Indiana, a 60-foot tall statue of Jesus Christ burned to the ground after being struck by lightning during a thunderstorm.
Monroe, Ohio had been home to the "King of Kings" statue -- nicknamed "Touchdown Jesus" -- since 2004, but police say that a lightning strike set the structure aflame shortly after 11 PM ET Monday.
More from the Associated Press:
The sculpture, 62 feet tall and 40 feet wide at the base, showed Jesus from the torso up and was nicknamed Touchdown Jesus because of the way his arms were raised, as though reaching out to catch a football. It was made of plastic foam and fiberglass over a steel frame, which is all that remained early Tuesday. ...I'm guessing Charlie Weis is somehow responsible.
Travelers on Interstate 75 often were startled to come upon the huge statue by the roadside, but many said America needs more symbols like it. So many people stopped at the church campus that church officials had to build a walkway to accommodate them.
The 4,000-member, nondenominational church was founded by former horse trader Lawrence Bishop and his wife. Bishop said in 2004 he was trying to help people, not impress them, with the statue. He said his wife proposed the Jesus figure as a beacon of hope and salvation and they spent about $250,000 to finance it.