Pastor Bob Simon fulfills childhood dream of building a model of the Vatican City entirely out of Lego bricks.
Pastor Bob Simon at St. Catherine of Siena Church in Moscow, Pennsylvania had a childhood dream. He wanted to build a model of the Vatican City out of Lego bricks. He gave it a try in seventh grade. It did not go as planned and the pastor gave it up as a child for a few years. The simple reason being that the model didn’t look anything like the real thing.
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He never gave up on his dream though. He started to build the model in September, 2014. The preparation was intended to be completed ahead of Pope Francis' visit to Philadelphia. Pastor Simon says he started buying the Lego bricks two years before he started. The pastor said that it took him ten months but the model is finally complete.
"It took about ten months," Simon, 50, told USA Today. "I was buying bricks [Legos] for about two years before I started."
He has built a model of the Vatican complete with St. Peter’s Square. The model took about nearly half a million Legos to complete. The model is highly detailed.
It features a mini figure of the pope waving to a crowd and an array of other figures from nuns with iPhones to robbers, characters with sombreros and Elvis. Pastor Simon said that he wanted to show a lot of diversity. St. Peter’s Square is a place that a lot of people come from all over the world.
The model was featured at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. The model which is on display through February, will be shown alongside the 10,000 square foot Vatican Splendors display that opens at the Institute on Saturday.
Larry Dubinski, president & CEO of The Franklin Institute said that the model and other Lego creations have brought "record crowds," this summer.
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The 50 year old Pastor admitted that the building of the model was a "very quiet experience at the end of the day." He said that while engaged in the repetitive process of placing bricks, the mind was at peace and often somewhere else.