Looks like we will be getting a new museum in town soon. This should be interesting, especially since there have been traveling Bible exhibits at the Library of Congress and the Sackler Gallery (Smithsonian) in past years. I'm also interested since it has connections with my home state of Oklahoma!
large-scale Bible museum will open in Washington, D.C., within four
years, say planners who have been touring the world with portions of
Cary Summers, chief operating officer of The Museum of
the Bible, a nonprofit umbrella group for the collection of the
billionaire Green family of Oklahoma, said they considered Washington,
Dallas and New York but decided the nation's capital was the best
location. The final name of the museum and its exact location have not
been disclosed but planners hope to confirm a location later this
Research they commissioned found that the general
population was more willing to travel to the nation's capital for a
Bible-focused museum than the other two cities, Summers said.
"In reality, the population base within that eight-to-10
hour drive of D.C. represents half the U.S. or two-thirds and there's a
lot of Christians in that group," he said Tuesday.
Summers, who has been a consultant on the Creation
Museum's planned life-size Noah's Ark in Kentucky, said the Bible museum
will charge admission. Although the museums of the Smithsonian
Institution are free, he noted that the Newseum and the Spy Museum both
charge admission and have been successful.
A sampling of the Bible museum's offerings—from the collection of more than 40,000 artifacts—have been displayed in the Passages Exhibit
at the Vatican and in Oklahoma City and Atlanta and will soon appear in Charlotte, N.C.
Summers said the traveling exhibit recreates at 80
percent scale the chamber of London's Westminster Abbey where the King
James Version of the Bible was written. A full-scale recreation is
planned for the museum.
Steve Green, president of the Hobby Lobby arts and
crafts chain and a Southern Baptist, said the museum will feature the
history, contents and influence of the Bible but will leave it up to
visitors to decide whether to believe the holy book.
"When we present the evidence, I think it's going to be
compelling for somebody to say, `Wow, this is a compelling book. I might
want to consider what it has to say,'" he said.