Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

March 3, 2014

Symbolic old cross on hill will be restored


— By TYLER MASK



Amidst all the excitement going on with the Baker restoration, there is another project locals are getting excited about.

“Just across town, on a hill to the east, stands another symbol,” Pray Mineral Wells' Rose Jordan said. “And for me, this one offers even greater hope.”

The symbol, a massive structure known as the East Mountain Cross, has been slowly decaying since the owners left Mineral Wells. But everything is about to change for Mineral Wells' giant reminder of Christ's sacrifice.

Recently, a group of Mineral Wells pastors gathered at the foot of the cross, praying for the city, county and God's plans for the future.

“While there, we all felt a bit saddened by the condition of the cross and wanted to find a way to fix it,” Jordan said.

Since then, Jordan has tracked down the owners, who are the original builders, and has resolved to work with them to restore the cross to its former glory.

Although the original owners never wanted the cross to wither away, financial troubles in the 90s forced the couple into selling off everything but the land the cross was on and moving out of Mineral Wells. Jordan believes God's timing for the cross is now.

“It wasn't enough for Mr. Wiggins (owner) to want to fix up that old cross,” she said. “God wanted the people of this city to want to fix it together. This symbol holds a great deal more hope to me. It is a hope of a united people and a hope of a loving God.”

At this time, PMW is requesting stories and testimonies related to the cross, in the same vein as the stories the owners used to hear from people struck by its dignity.

The cross was erected in October 1986 by Leon and Evelyn Wiggins. Leon Wiggins is an ordained pastor who worked with Victory New Testament Fellowship International during the time he built the cross.

He was raised in Mineral Wells, but left in the late 1960s. Evelyn's father was the late Mineral Wells pastor, J.C. Atkins.

The Wigginses were living in Fort Worth when they felt a call to move back to Mineral Wells. The event that sparked the move was a dream Evelyn Wiggins had of returning.

After being turned down from Millsap Mountain – their first choice – the couple finally found what they were looking for on the east side of town.

“I just knew that's where God wanted [the cross],” Leon Wiggins said in a 1989 Index article.

Their ultimate hope in building the cross was to inspire everyone driving through Mineral Wells.

“What inspired me to put it up is for it to be a constant reminder to passersby that Christ died on the cross and shed his blood for us and rose up, and they can also live forever if the trust him,” Wiggins said in 1987 in the index.

The cross, built from two microwave dish towers, is made of 20-inch square steel and stands 40 feet tall, weighing in at 1,500 pounds. It is visible to both east and west bound traffic on Highway 180.

During its prime, the Wigginses received calls from various people regarding the cross's impact on their lives.

“We've had several calls from people about how their lives have been changed by that cross,” Wiggins said in 1987 in the Index. “We have seen good work come out of it.”

Faith is said to move mountains, and PMW has faith that God will move this mountain. All stories and testimonies should be submitted to Jordan at rose.praymineralwells@gmail.com or on Facebook at Pray Mineral Wells.