When Parvez Henry Gill woke up from a dream he claimed God appeared in, he realized it was his personal mission to “do something different” and help protect and inspire the Christians in Pakistan, a majority Muslim country.
Gill then financed and oversaw the construction of a 140-foot-tall cross that towers above the entrance to Karachi’s only operational Christian cemetery. When it was finished, the behemoth monument was touted as the largest cross in Asia.
Facing security concerns, Parvez did not tell even the workers the true nature of the project. They built a long squared column first, and added the outward arms of the cross toward the end of the project. When the true intent was discovered midway through construction, 20 workers quit the job. But not all of the workers stopped, making the final result a blend of Christian and Muslim efforts.
Gill claims the cross is bulletproof and can withstand any damage religiously intolerant vandals may subject it to. As it’s made of steel, iron, and cement, it does seem likely the cross will be able to continue standing tall and won’t come down easy.
The Gora Qabristan Cemetery (which roughly translated to “white man’s graveyard”), dates to the British colonial era. The cemetery itself is often vandalized and covered in garbage and is even home to an informal settlement situated on top of several dozens graves.