Ruth Graham, the daughter of the iconic world evangelist Billy Graham, is showing her support for the life-sized Ark of Noah as comes closer to making its maiden voyage across the Atlantic Ocean to the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil.
The Ark of Noah Foundation and other Christian groups are making it possible for Dutch carpenter Johan Huibers to christen his full-size replica of the Ark described in Genesis as it prepares to embark on its inaugural 5,000-mile journey.
"The Ark of Noah team is a multinational team from the United States, the Netherlands and Brazil supported by many Christian organizations around the globe," Graham explained in a news release. "They are eager to bring the Gospel message by bringing the Ark across the Atlantic Ocean to Brazil.”
In anticipation of the many stops planned after the Olympics in an effort to help spread God’s Word, the recognized Christian author and speaker is eager to inspire the Body of Christ to lift up the massive global endeavor.
“This is an enormous challenge God has called them to and I encourage support of this calling," Graham continued.
Keeping the message of hope afloat
As the owner and builder of the gigantic boat, Huibers is undocking his religious attraction from Rotterdam, Netherlands — where it has attracted multitudes of visitors over the past four years — and heading to Fortaleza on the northeastern coast of Brazil in time for the Olympic Games … before it heads south to Rio de Janeiro for the Paralympic Summer Games.
But this is just the beginning of the voyage, as the floating wonder is scheduling to set anchor in the ports of Montevideo in Uruguay and Buenos Aires in Argentina, as well as in Havana, Cuba. Panama and Columbia are also on the Ark’s destination list. Once making it to the Pacific Ocean, Huibers’ dream is looking to dock in the American ports of San Diego and Long Beach in California, followed by a stop in Seattle, Washington.
Impressive inside and out
Built to scale to resemble the actual dimensions God gave to Noah in Genesis 16:15, the Ark of Noah measures longer than a professional football field at approximately 410 feet, stretching 95 feet in width and reaching 75.5 feet high. Tipping the scales at 2,500 tons, the Ark can carry 5,000 people at a time as they explore multiple levels inside to experience different exhibitions, including displays of live and simulated animals, a movie and music theater, exhibited Bible stories and a restaurant.
After Huibers shared his biblical marvel with crowds in northern Europe starting in July 2012, he decided to take his show on the road by partnering with the Pasadena, California-based nonprofit organization, The Ark of Noah Foundation. In his published autobiography, The Unsinkable Dream, the master carpenter shared his dream of seeing the “Ark” in the port of Rio de Janeiro. To make his dream a reality, the Ark is going to be mounted and transported on top of a barge.
Sharing the message of hope
The mission of the Ark’s new trans-oceanic adventure is to bring the “Experience of Hope to Thousands” in South America, Central America and North America. Ark of Noah Foundation President David Rivera continues to raise support to fund the floating Bible adventure so that Huibers’ creation can reach its targeted destinations with the Gospel message.
The Ark of Noah was designed to bring to life the biblical account of the global Flood, as described in Genesis 7:11–12, where God unleashes “the fountains of the great deep” to cover the Earth in water — with Noah, his wife, three sons and their wives and two of each kind of animal aboard the Ark as the sole survivors of the catastrophic deluge.