In a previous Inquisitr article, it was reported that a Dutchman who built Noah’s Ark is hoping to bring the massive boat to Brazil this summer with the help of the The Ark of Noah Foundation in Pasadena, California. However, right here in the United States, a Noah’s Ark theme park is set to open on July 7, 2016, in Williamstown, Kentucky, as announced in the video above. Dubbed the Ark Encounter, the theme park also has a life-size replica of Noah’s Ark, which the builders say is the “most authentic and the most realistic reconstruction of Noah’s Ark in the world.” In another related Inquisitr article, Ark Encounter was recently the target of an online hoax that stated the theme park was destroyed in a real flood.
Contractor talks about the Noah’s Ark Encounter experience in the video below.
If you want to work at the Noah’s Ark theme park, there is one stipulation — you must be a Christian. As reported by AP, the Noah’s Ark theme park is searching for 300 to 400 workers for positions such as food service, ticketing, and other theme park positions. Ken Ham, founder of the ministry Answers in Genesis, which is supporting the theme park opening, says employees will have to sign a statement saying they are Christians and “profess Christ as their savior.” Before you start to object to this, you should know that the religious group won a federal court ruling in January that allows them to make religious-based hiring requirements. Ham says the group makes no apologies about being a religious group.
“We are a religious group and we make no apology about that, and (federal law) allows us that. We’re requiring them to be Christians, that’s the bottom line.”
According to AP, U.S. District Judge Greg Van Tatenhove ruled that an exemption to the 1964 Civil Rights Act allows the group to have a religious requirement for employment. The case was brought up due to Answers in Genesis seeking an estimated $18 billion tax rebate for tourism sales. There are plenty of people objecting to this ruling however. One group, Americans United For Separation of Church and State, says that Judge Van Tatenhove “wrongly interpreted the law in his ruling.” Matt Bevin, the new Republican governor of Kentucky and conservative Christian, says the administration will not appeal the ruling.
Dan Phelps, the president of the Kentucky Paleontological Society, asked if non-evangelical Christians, such as Catholics, would be allowed to work at the park. Phelps was concerned, saying that Catholics are usually not “fundamentalist Christians, and don’t take things literally.” Ham said that the requirement won’t distinguish between Christian denominations.
“There are Christians in all sorts of different denominations. So as long as they sign that, it doesn’t specify in there whether you’re Protestant or Catholic or Baptist or Presbyterian or whatever.”
Federal judge rules in favor of Ark Encounter in KY tax incentive case, issues preliminary injunction against state.— Paul Miles (@PaulMiles84) January 26, 2016
Ham also said that the group has hired a human resources firm to handle the hiring for the park, and job postings should be posted in a week or so, according to the AP article posted on April 14. As of today, the Ark Encounter website has not posted any job openings, but they are taking donations and selling tickets to the attraction. The website is also offering lifetime and three-year charter “boarding passes” for a limited time. The boarding passes are only available for purchase until May 31, 2016, and include admission to the Ark Encounter, the already established Creation Museum (of which Noah’s Ark is a sister attraction), and many other exclusive benefits.
Construction on the bow is moving forward quickly! pic.twitter.com/uhro5LMAmw— Ark Encounter (@ArkEncounter) April 26, 2016
In spite of controversy surrounding the opening of the park, the Ark Encounter promises it will be “family-oriented, historically authentic, and environmentally friendly. The organization intends to add other attractions over the next few years, such as a pre-Flood walled city, the Tower of Babel, a first-century village, a journey in history from Abraham to the parting of the Red Sea, a walk-through aviary, an expanded petting zoo and other attractions that will “uphold the truth of God’s Word.”
The video below gives update on the finished interior of Noah’s Ark in Kentucky.
[Image Via Ark Encounter/YouTube]