The Archbishop of Turin Tweets

April 19, 2015 Leave a comment
Categories: 2015

Barrie Schwortz to Publish 118 Issues of Rex Morgan’s Shroud News

April 19, 2015 1 comment

imageSo Stephen Jones tells us. Moreover:

I have decided to re-start (again!) my Shroud of Turin News. The last issue was in October 2013. What prompted me was that I have started scanning the 118 issues of fellow Australian Rex Morgan’s Shroud News, with his permission, for a new archive of that name on Barrie Schwortz’ According to Schwortz the Shroud News archive should commence "this summer," and will be announced in his imminent late April, update. Also, I had recently read Mark Guscin’s"Interview With Rex Morgan" in the BSTS Newsletter No. 63 of June 2006, in which Morgan [right] said:

There have been many letters asking me to resurrect Shroud News and I would much like to. The mountain of material I have assembled since the last one would enable me to produce issues for many more years.

While I do not claim that this is the successor to Morgan’s Shroud News(which is one reason I have called it "Shroud of Turin News"), I do hope that this new (or re-started) series will help in some small way to fill the void left by Morgan’s decision to not continue with his original Shroud News after December 2001. As before, I will add my comments to Shroud-related news and other articles in reverse chronological order (latest uppermost). My comments are in bold to distinguish them from the articles’.

I wish him luck.  And, certainly, all of us will appreciate the scanning work he is undertaking.

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The Shroud of Turin Exposition on Social Media

April 19, 2015 3 comments

imageThe Archdiocese of Turin, under the leadership of the Pontifical Custodian of the Shroud Msgr. Cesare Nosiglia, Archbishop of Turin has done an extraordinarily good job of organizing the 2015 Exposition. Part of this has been assembling a network of informative cyberspace venues.

Their home page is available in Italian, French and English. Not so, unfortunately, are many of the interior pages, a disappointment only because there is such wonderful content. Alas, forsooth, sweet Google translation. To read or not to read, that is the question.

Here are the official social media outlets:

The Holy Shroud Official Website

Sindone 2015 Facebook

Sindone 2015 Twitter

Sindone 2015 YouTube Channel

Sindone 2015 Google+

Sindone 2015 Instagram

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Feature Story in National Geographic

April 18, 2015 5 comments

Looming above all other issues is what physicist Paolo Di Lazzaro calls “the question of questions”: how the image was produced, regardless of its age.

imageThe Shroud of Turin, as featured on the home page of National Geographic. Note, however, Nat Geo rotates principle articles so if you click on it you may not see this page as it is portrayed here.

The MUST READ article’s title is  Why Shroud of Turin’s Secrets Continue to Elude Science.

The lead reads: “As the venerated relic goes on public exhibition, its origin remains a mystery wrapped in an enigma.”

The author, Frank Viviano, has written a fair and balanced story. A couple samples:

clip_image001The sum result is a standoff, with researchers unable to dismiss the shroud entirely as a forgery, or prove that it is authentic. “It is unlikely science will provide a full solution to the many riddles posed by the shroud,” Italian physicist Paolo Di Lazzaro, a leading expert on the phenomenon, told National Geographic. “A leap of faith over questions without clear answers is necessary—either the ‘faith’ of skeptics, or the faith of believers.”


Looming above all other issues is what physicist Paolo Di Lazzaro calls “the question of questions”: how the image was produced, regardless of its age. Every scientific attempt to replicate it in a lab has failed. Its precise hue is highly unusual, and the color’s penetration into the fabric is extremely thin, less than 0.7 micrometers (0.000028 inches), one-thirtieth the diameter of an individual fiber in a single 200-fiber linen thread.

Di Lazzaro and his colleagues at Italy’s National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (ENEA) conducted five years of experiments, using state-of-the-art excimer lasers to train short bursts of ultraviolet light on raw linen, in an effort to simulate the image’s coloration. The ENEA team, which published its findings in 2011, came tantalizingly close to approximating the image’s distinctive hue on a few square centimeters of fabric. But they were unable to match all the physical and chemical characteristics of the shroud image. Nor could they reproduce a whole human figure.

God Does Whatever He Feels Like

April 18, 2015 36 comments

Mark Shea is wound up.  Perhaps to much caffeinated chocolate.  Try the carob Mark. But then again, I agree with you.

…not a painting, not a scorch, not a photograph.

imageThat’s cuz it’s the real thing. Challenge to Skeptics: If it’s medieval forgery made by and for primitive suckers then get with the program. We live in the 21st century. There’s nothing technological a medieval could do that we can’t do ten times better and faster. So make another one.  But do it using the 14th century tech you say created this.  And don’t give me this piece of carob on the right…,,,and call it chocolate.  If that thing on the right is a “reproduction” of the Shroud then Justin Bieber is Enrico Caruso.


Not that Catholic faith rests on  the Shroud.  Millions of Christians have lived and died never so much as having heard of, let alone seen, it.  But such grace notes are kindnesses from a God who, under carefully controlled laboratory conditions and despite advice from the finest ideologues money can buy, does whatever he feels like.

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Transferring the Shroud to the Display Case for the Exhibition

April 18, 2015 1 comment
Categories: 2015, Exhibition

The Shroud of Turin in the Wall Street Journal

April 18, 2015 3 comments

There is a haunting “Godong via Getty Image” photograph of the “Details of the Shroud of Turin” in the Wall Street Journal. I think the photograph may actually be a cut and paste from a reproduction (below) of the shroud’s face in the Chiesa Della Ss. Annunziata Church in Turin which is sold as a poster in gift shops around town.  It may also be ordered as a poster, T-shirt or tote bag from  And here is a good copy of that cut and paste at the Huffington Post, which captions it correctly.

The Wall Street Journal’s Vatican reporter, Francis X. Rocca, yesterday, filed a perspective on the upcoming exhibition of the shroud, An Ancient Shroud and an Eternal Debate: The display of Turin’s famed relic begins Sunday. He writes:

When the Shroud of Turin goes on display Sunday for the first time in five years, it will revive a long-running debate as to whether it is a medieval fabrication or—as Catholic devotees have believed for centuries—the burial cloth of Jesus Christ.

But that debate raises the larger question of why Catholics venerate the shroud—and countless other relics.

The fervor surrounding each display of the shroud testifies to the power such relics command in the church. More than a million people have already reserved a free ticket for an up-close view of the shroud, which will be displayed until June 24. Visitors will file past the shroud for 12 hours a day, and about a fifth of the available dates are sold out.


Such veneration inevitably gave rise to a market in relics, some of them dubious, such as the head of St. John the Baptist—as a child. For centuries, pilgrims to St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome thought they were venerating a “Veil of Veronica” that the Vatican today acknowledges is a copy.


In the case of the Shroud of Turin, the church does not take a stance as to whether it is authentic or not, leaving that question to scientists and historians. The results of carbon-14 tests in 1988 suggested the shroud was no older than the 13th century, but other experts have since suggested that the fabric tested may have been contaminated by centuries of handling. No one has been able to duplicate the image on the shroud or to explain how it was produced.

When Pope John Paul II visited the shroud in 1998, he acknowledged disagreements about its history and actual connection to Jesus. “Since it is not a matter of faith, the church has no specific competence to pronounce on these questions,” John Paul said.


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