Local man dedicates lifelong collection to God, the community

JACKSON, Tenn. — If you’re driving down Old Bells Highway or U.S. 412 in Jackson, you may see a new addition you may not have seen before.

Sunday was the dedication ceremony for The Cross, and the founder of the project shared with WBBJ 7 Eyewitness News how this monument not only represents his love of God but was a lifetime in the making.

Norwood Jones says for over 40 years he’s kept up an usual collection — bricks.

“I’ve always said that, ‘Hey, if you do everything like everybody else does, you won’t make a difference in the world,'” monument founder Norwood Jones said.

Those bricks, he and his family say, have been gathered from all over the world.

“It didn’t matter where we would go, he would just stop on the side of the interstate or country roads or something. He says, ‘I’m going to go get a brick,’ and so we would go, ‘Oh daddy, please don’t go get a brick right now. Daddy please,'” said Leighann Taylor, Jones’ daughter.

Jones says every one of his bricks has a story. He told us about how he had trouble walking around the UN building in New York with one of them.

“‘Watch that guy that’s got that camera case on him, he’s got a brick in there,’ and the security people, they were keeping an eye on me everywhere I went,” Jones said.

Jones says he didn’t know what he was going to do with his 250-brick collection.

“And something out of the blue just told me, says, ‘Norwood, why don’t you take those bricks and build a cross?'” Jones said.

So that’s exactly what he did, and Sunday evening, he dedicated that cross to the God of Love. Jones said, just the other day, a man approached him while Jones was at the monument with his family.

“And he made the comment, says, ‘I just want to tell all you folks that I made peace with the Lord on that bench over there two days ago,’ and I thought, wow, worth everything we’ve put into this thing to hear testimony like that, you know? Worth everything,” Jones said.

Jones says he dedicated the cross to the God of Love because it reminds people of Jesus’ main commandment, which he says is love God and love your neighbor as yourself.

He also says people can visit the cross, which includes two benches and a place to park any time of day.

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