Author Archive

New Novel: The Blood of the Shroud

July 11, 2014 3 comments

imageAccording to the Redland Daily Facts, the local newspaper for the Redlands, California,

Timothy Floyd Miller, a 55-year resident of the Redlands area, has recently published his first novel, “The Blood of the Shroud,” through Las Vegas-based publisher, ADJ Publishing LLC.

The book tells the story of the theft of the Shroud of Turin, believed to be the burial shroud of Jesus Christ, from its home in St. John the Baptist’s Church in Italy, by an unknown group of people. The U.S. government’s “Procurement” division is then enlisted to help get it back and protagonists and ex-Navy SEALs Levi Ben Levine and Aaron Graftt (a biblical archaeologist) are pulled out of retirement to assist. They eventually join forces with micro biologist Laurel Coventry, and the three begin a grand adventure of biblical proportions.

It is available as a Kindle book at

Categories: Books Tags:

New Photographs of the Samples from Oxford

July 10, 2014 2 comments

imagePam has sent some new pictures.  You may recall that she applied to Oxford University (under the UK Freedom of Information Act 2007) to supply the photographs and data surrounding the 1988 tests. This exchange took place:

“Professor Ramsey has put most of it online. (one of the samples is missing but the Shroud data is there).

I wrote to her and asked her to explain what she meant when she said a sample was missing. Her next email to me stated:

“If you look at the whole sample of three of the tested cloths p2574_5; p2576_5 and p2575_8 you can see the first three samples. But the last one (I suspect it is Louis’ cloak) is missing.

“I’m fairly sure the Shroud is p2575 – the only herringbone weave and it looks like other related images we’ve seen of nearby samples. But on Monday I will go back to the compliance officer and question it.”

She has followed up. Yesterday she wrote to me:

Just to say that Professor Ramsey has posted some fascinating photos of the sample online. 

They are not the official University photos but they add substantially to Shroud knowledge. In particular the Shroud of Turin sample shows the underside/ reverse of the cloth.  Has that ever been photographed before?  I don’t remember seeing it.

The official set from early June

The latest showing the underside as a PDF file (or click on the image above)

Newly Published Thomas de Wesselow Video

July 10, 2014 7 comments

I have not seen this video before: Thomas de Wesselow discussing his theory that the Shroud of Turin provides an explanation as to why the first Christians came to believe in the Resurrection. It is an IdeaCity series page at The video was made on June 18, 2012 and just published yesterday at DailyMotion. It runs 22 minutes.

And Whence Cometh the Pure Rubbish

July 9, 2014 2 comments

imageA follow up to Pure Rubbish:  Colin Berry tracked it down for us. He wrote in a couple of comments:

It was penned by the editor (no less) of The Church Today in April 2009. See page 5 of this pdf:

It was easy to track down with Google by inputting that 600,000 claim – and no surprise to see it accompanied by the term “pier review” !


PS: I omitted to mention that it’s a local (Louisiana-based) periodical, and that the article in question was prefaced with this hat tip – if one can so dignify it:

“Editor’s Note: The following information is from a Lighthouse Catholic Media CD titled “The Passion of Christ in Light of the Holy Shroud of Turin,” by Fr.Francis Peffley.”

Well guess what: you can listen to the first eight minutes of the CD without buying it or an MP3 version. Just CLICK HERE or on the image above. Pour a tall one and sit back. Find the player button and listen.  The level of inaccuracy is extraordinary.

Pure Rubbish

July 9, 2014 11 comments

imageGrand Island, Nebraska, is the county seat of mostly rural Hall County, Nebraska. It is a city of about 50,000 people on the Platt River and Interstate 80, two hours west of Omaha.  According to a story on The Grand Island Independent, yesterday: 

There is an amazing display coming to Grand Island this week which is very unique. “The Man of the Shroud” is a national exhibit unbiased in nature and non-denominational. You can view a life –size 14-by-3-foot display that replicates the holy Shroud of Turin which many believe is the burial cloth of Jesus.

I’ve blogged about this traveling exhibit on display throughout Nebraska sponsored by the Spirit Catholic Radio. So far, reports in the media have been accurate and sparse on detail. However, this one contains a real doozy. Not a word of this next paragraph from The Grand Island Independent  is true after the first sentence. Nothing is even slightly true. I’m wondering where this highly imaginative information came from:

This is a replica of the original Shroud of Turin. The original Shroud has had over 600,000 hours of research on it by scientists the last 30 years with over 2,000 scientists doing modern research. Most of those that worked on the Shroud were either atheist or agnostics but over 90 percent of them have become Christian after studying the Shroud. Pope John Paul II called the Shroud, “The greatest relic of Christendom.”

Such pure rubbish gets around unfortunately. That is a major problem with the Internet. I found a brief mention on another site that reads:

The Shroud has over 600,000 hours of study, and of the scientists that did study the shroud, 95% of the are now Christian.

and another site, speaks of 600,000 hours of “peer reviewed” research. The claims that “most of those” who worked on the shroud were atheist or agnostic is simply ridiculous. 

Hat tip to Louis for spotting this.

More on the Long Cloth Mandylion

July 8, 2014 Leave a comment
Categories: Art, History Tags: ,

It is the Shroud of Turin of whatever it is

July 8, 2014 Leave a comment

will this replace “the real McCoy”?

imagePeter Becker, a partner in Janus Films and Co-President of The Criterion Collection, explaining the effort to bring out of a remastered, 50th anniversary release of the film, “A Hard Day’s Night.”

This is the real deal. There is a thing here that was the piece of film that passed through the camera that the Beatles walked in front of and that’s the piece of film that we are scanning and honoring, but with it come all of the same conditions of age and if this was a thing from the Renaissance, there would be a shrine to this little piece of film. It’s the actual thing. It is the ‘Shroud of Turin’ of whatever it is. It’s what the image is recorded on. It’s the original thing and there’s a sacred quality to that when you’re working with one of the great films and this is a piece of film itself but it also is subject to the same ravages of time that anything else is. In fact, film is very perishable as we well know. You can leave Michelangelo’s David out in the Piazza Della Signoria for 200 years and take it inside later and clean it off and it’s still in pretty good shape, but you can’t leave a can of film out in the sun for an afternoon. (emphasis mine)

Want to see the trailer?  Scroll down after clicking in.

A Long Cloth Mandylion?

July 8, 2014 24 comments

O.K. writes:

Some time ago I found an interesting illustration of a "long" Mandylion. First in the Holger Kersten&Elmar Gruber book "Jezus ofiarą spisku" (the polish edition of The Jesus Conspiracy) I provide a scan from it [Illustration1]. The picture is not adressed anywhere in the book, and as the source is given simply "Bibliothéque Nationale". The same picture is reproduced in Antonio Teseo blog, who gives the source as Bibliothéque Nationale, ms lat.2688, dated 1280-85.

Another time when I saw this illustration is in Francesac Saracino 2007 documentary LaSacra Sindone; la storia. [Illustration2]. It confirmed that the illustration is generally monochromatic. However it is certain that the cloth is "long" (just look on the position of hands and the frame [Illustration3]), even though nothing more except the face is seen on it. It shows that the cloth have been considered by some as much larger than often claimed, larger than just handkerchief. Possibly large enough to contain the image of the whole body (as implied by Codex Vossianus and Ordericus Vitalis), even though, as I said, only face is depicted on the presented illustration.

Illustration 1:


Illustration 2:


Illustration 3:


New Documentary in the Works

July 8, 2014 4 comments

Barrie Schwortz writes on the STERA Facebook page:

Last week I participated in the filming of a new documentary that is taking a completely novel (and refreshing) approach to presenting information about the Shroud of Turin. Rather than the usual talking heads in white lab coats that argue for or against authenticity, this program follows the research of Parker Dow (hidden behind the camera in the photo), a high school student from St. Louis who is actually researching and writing his senior thesis on the Shroud. In fact, it was Parker himself who interviewed me and not an off camera producer as is typical in such programs. The as yet unnamed program is designed to appeal to a younger audience and is slated for release in 2015. . . .

Here is a link to Salt River Production Group.

The image shown is an inline link to the image on the STERA Facebook page where it resides and the credit reads: “Photo courtesy Chuck Neff, Salt River Production Group (one of the co-sponsors of the upcoming St. Louis Shroud Conference).”

Is Francis Right?

July 7, 2014 15 comments

imageJohn Klotz has posted to his blog a section of the seventeenth chapter of his forthcoming book about the Shroud of Turin. It is called, The Apocalyptic Prophecy of Pope Francis.  Also read an earlier posting, The Apocalypse of Selfishness: The Great “So What?” They hang together nicely.

From his latest posting:

Despite some criticisms from conservative elements in the Church, Francis has not retreated from his elevation of the environment to a religious issue. On May 21, 2014, Pope Francis told an audience; “If we destroy creation, creation will destroy us.”

Is Francis right? Was his statement hyperbole or prophecy? Creation destroying us! Is he prophesying an Apocalypse?

Tourists or Pilgrims?

July 6, 2014 2 comments

clip_image001A reader writes:

There is something of a circus-like sideshow dimension to this whole 2015 thing in Turin.  Which nutty professor do we sign up with, the miracle image maker or the natural image maker? We need a faker maker tour led by none other than Professor Berry?  We need to know who do we want to rub elbows with and what is for dinner?  Are the busses air conditioned and will there be time for shopping? Do we have to stand in line and do we get free monogrammed ponchos if it rains? These people are tourists, not pilgrims. A pilgrim shows up alone or with a couple of friends, sleeps in a hostel or inexpensive hotel and eats in food courts or on outdoor benches. But that is not good for business.

Colin Berry has expressed his views in Are we there yet?  Check it out.  There is much there I agree with.

Put St. Louis on the Map

July 6, 2014 6 comments

imageRice Professor, a reader of this blog, writes:

Everyone is doing it. For instance the Vatican has a YouTube channel. You should create one for the St. Louis conference. Tape every presentation. Upload them to your channel.  Provide links to the papers when you do so. Get and to promote it. This will put the St. Louis conference on the map. This will promote respectability for sindonology and authenticity like never before. Okay, so you have a couple of nut job papers. So what. The most difficult part will be turning on the camera. The cost will be zero.

Actually, the Vatican has several official channels in different languages. I found these:

Russ Breault has made recordings at previous conferences.  I agree, putting the presentations on YouTube in a special YouTube conference channel would be a good idea.

Another Tour Group to Turin in 2015

July 5, 2014 Leave a comment

clip_image001Recently announced:

Dr. John Jackson & Rebecca Jackson
Presents An Exclusive

Dear Friend,

This is a personal invitation to join John Jackson, PH.D., founder of the Turin Shroud Center of Colorado and acclaimed ethnologist Rebecca Jackson for an experience that could transform your life. The ordinary pilgrim may never encounter the people and places we have scheduled.

The Holy Shroud of Turin
June 6 – JUNE 15, 2015

So, this is in addition to the Southern Cross Pilgrimage with Archbishop William Slattery which includes the Holy Land, Rome and Florence that I mentioned earlier today. The Jackson’s 10 day tour also includes Florence. There will be other tours including, according to the STERA Facebook page, Canterbury Tours with Barrie Schwortz. Back in February, Barrie wrote:

I’ll be working with Canterbury Tours again, as I did in 1998, 2000 and 2010. Now that the dates are confirmed we will start making specific plans. Keep watching for more details in the near future.

I’ll try to spot others, too.

2015: Shroud of Turin Pilgrimage Plus Holy Land, Rome and Florence

July 5, 2014 4 comments

imageSouthern Cross is promoting a Holy Shroud and Holy Land Pilgrimage in May next year.

Holy Land: Galilee: Nazareth (Basilica of Annunciation, Mary’s Well etc). Cana (with an opportunity to renew marriage vows). Mount Tabor. Capernaum. Mount of Beatitudes. Tabgha. Boat Ride on the Sea of Galilee, and more…

Jerusalem: Via Dolorosa (Way of the Cross). Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Western Wall and Temple Mount. Mount of Olives with Gethsemane, Ascension, Mary’s Tomb etc. Mount Zion with Upper Room, St Peter in Gallicantu and Dormition Abbey, where Our Lady fell asleep…. Ein Kerem, where Our Lady visited Elizabeth. PLUS Bethlehem with Shepherd’s Fields and Bethany

Rome: Papal Audience, Mass in St Peter’s Basilica, Sistine Chapel, Catacombs, Major Basilicas,  Ancient and Baroque Rome…

Florence: Dumo cathedral, Church of the Holy Cross with tombs of Michelangelo and Galileo, Renaissance Florence…

Turin: Reserved viewing of the Shroud of Turin in the Cathedral of St John the Baptist, sites of Don Bosco: Pinardi Chapel and Basilica of Our Lady Help of Christians…

Stephen Jones Continues his Computer Hacking Conspiracy Theory

July 5, 2014 5 comments

imageStephen is now trying to convince us that Timothy Linick, did indeed, hack the AMS computer consoles when the Shroud of Turin was carbon dated in order to fake the results and thus prove that the shroud was not the authentic burial cloth of Jesus of Nazareth.

Linick was, Jones tells us, 1) an extreme anti-authenticist, 2) was the leaker of Arizona’s carbon dating results, 3) was found dead ‘under unclear circumstances’ within a day’s time of the death of a KGB agent named Karl Kock, 4) was involved in AMS measurements and 5) had sufficient time to prepare. None of these things, of course, may be true except the coincidental date of his death which is not evidence of any kind of connection whatsoever. And if there was any real truth to any of this, so what?

If this isn’t enough for Stephen, we now have Hugh Farey who is (drum role) an ant-authenticist acting like the editor of a newsletter should act:

Arizona’s Prof. Jull’s and Oxford’s Prof. Ramsey’s misleading and false responses to my hacking proposal A copy of a comment I made on Dan Porter’s blog, proposing that the radiocarbon dating laboratories may have been duped by a computer hacker (at that early stage I did not claim it was a theory) was sent without my permission to Prof. A.J. Timothy Jull, Director of the Arizona radiocarbon dating laboratory.and to Oxford’s Prof. Christopher Ramsey, by the anti-authenticist Editor of the BSTS Newsletter, Hugh Farey[44] and then posted by Porter to his blog[45] .

Stephen finds this suspicious.

Note to Stephen: If you comment on my blog, it is a public statement. Hugh Farey does not need your permission to send your comment to anyone.

Note to Stephen #2:  You are stating that professors Jull and Ramsey made misleading and false statements.  I hope you can prove that.

Note to Stephen #3:  All of this is pure conspiracy theory of the worst kind.

Anticipating the Conference: Barrie Schwortz on Ray Rogers

July 4, 2014 3 comments

Barrie Schwortz  |  12-Oct-2014  |  10:45-11:00 am


In the past few years, I have sadly witnessed a growing number of personal attacks impugning the integrity, character and credentials of the late Raymond N. Rogers, STURP chemist from Los Alamos National Laboratory. Although his research on the Shroud is empirically honest, is published in highly regarded peer-reviewed journals and speaks for itself, I believe it is time that the public get some background about the “other” Ray Rogers that he never revealed to the “Shroud crowd” himself. That is the primary purpose of this short presentation.

Click on the title to read the full abstract. Click here for the conference home page.

Pictured:  The cover of the book, A Chemist’s Perspective On The Shroud of Turin by Raymond N. Rogers.  Amazon is redirecting prospective buyers to office_bookshelf who is selling new copies for $97.00.  However, according to Lulu the book is available directly from them for $58.95 (see A Chemist’s Perspective on the Shroud of Turin). 

Electronic versions are available:

It’s everything to do with an unyielding structure called the upper rib cage

July 3, 2014 12 comments

imageThere is a fascinating bit of reasoning going on in the mind of Colin Berry. You need to click into Does the Man on the Turin Shroud really have a beard and moustache? (Or is the image an ‘impactogram’?).

“I’ve been there and read that posting,” I hear you say. Me too. That is why I missed an interesting bit of analysis until a reader pointed it out in an email. Colin has a strange way of adding to posts already dispatched to the servers in the clouds as new thoughts come to him. In the meantime, I’ve read his posting and the search engines, typically, have done whatever it is they do.

image– should have been a posting in its own right. But then again, who am I to tell Colin how to post. So go back to his blog and this time scroll down to the new addition. Here is enough to entice you to do so:

The picture on the right is a Durante 2002 "positive" from Shroud Scope.The one on the left is the much earlier (1931) Enrie black/white negative, but I’ve edited it to make it roughly comparable with the Durante image, first by reversing it, left/right, and then "inverting" the tones in ImageJ.

[ . . . ]

Why reiterate the distinction between the two types of  -graph in the context of the chest region?  Because there are no obvious reasons for expecting a large difference in image intensity in a photograph that shows chest and upper (solar plexus) abdomen in the same field of view. Why are we seeing it – especially in the contrasty Enrie pictures? Because the elevated, rigid chest region, whether of a real person or an effigy thereof impacts more on linen, suitably supported, than does the contiguous softer, lower lying area.

. . .  It’s everything to do with an unyielding structure called the upper rib cage, and its impact qualities when pressed against linen.

The next region to consider is the groin with those crossed hands. I believe it’s providing strong clues as to the mechanism of imaging, and no, it’s not dependent on any kind of radiation. Clue: look at the region where one hand overlaps the other.

More later (maybe not today) 

Hopefully, more later will be a new posting so it gets noticed and I will get a bell tone on my iPhone from Google telling me Colin has something new up. Then I could focus on the right things like what Colin has to say which is really interesting and I think meaningful in the greater context of image formation theory.

Part of a Comment Promoted: A Question for Today

July 2, 2014 12 comments

imageCharles Freeman writes in a comment:

So I just wonder what is going to happen if someone working on ancient linens in a conservation lab comes up with irrefutable evidence that the linen of the Shroud can only be say seventh century ,or eleventh century or fourteenth century, what will happen then? . . .

And I just wonder what sort of evidence might that be?

The Official Site Wants You to Come to the Exhibition in 2010

July 2, 2014 1 comment

That’s right, 2010

imageIt doesn’t matter how you got to the Official Shroud of Turin website maintained by the Diocese of Turin. Maybe you Googled your way in. Maybe someone sent you the link. Here it is:  Santa Sindone: Sito ufficiale (Shroud of Turin: Official Site). You prefer English so you click on English in the upper right corner. You then see five options in the top menu: 

Let’s just look at a couple of examples. If you click on THE SHROUD, this is what you see:

In the spring of 2010, just ten years after the Exposition in the jubilee year, the Holy Shroud will once again be on display in the Cathedral of Torino starting on 10 April to 23 May and also Pope Benedict XVI will be there to revere it. The Pope will be in Turin Sunday 2 May 2010.

2010?  April 10 to May 23?  Pope Benedict XVI will be there? Note that the bolding in this paragraph is not mine.  This is the official site published by the Diocese of Turin. 

Now click on NEWS AND INFO. Then click on Information. Then Online reservations. Maybe you are thinking of going in 2015.  Here is what you see:

From december it is possibile to make an online reservation to attend the Shroud exhibition from 10 april to 23 may 2010.Reservations are required.

2010?  Again? So you click on Italian. Maybe Google can translate it for you. No, that won’t do. The page is not available. You quickly lose confidence.

Picture of the Week: Lighting up the night on the South Jersey Shore

July 2, 2014 8 comments

Photo: In one hour...come by if you are in South Jersey!

From Russ Breault’s Shroud Encounter Facebook page.

Categories: Uncategorized

Is the beard of the man of the shroud an impactogram?

July 2, 2014 15 comments

imageIf I could just stop laughing, I think I could take Colin Berry seriously when he asks, “Does the Man on the Turin Shroud really have a beard and moustache? (Or is the image an ‘impactogram’?).”

It compelled me to wonder if there were other possibilities. Perhaps shaving cream. Was a part of the preparations in the tomb a shave but while doing so they ran out of time. In other words, in situ shaving cream. Certainly the top panel of the Hungarian Pray Manuscript illustration shows that this was what imagewas going on. Or maybe it was a combination of shaving cream and impactography as seen below on the left.

Note: The top picture was cropped from one suggested by Colin that appears on dozens of websites. The one to the left only appears on five websites.

Anticipating the Conference: Paul Maloney on the Stance of the Feet

July 1, 2014 1 comment

Paul Maloney  |  11-Oct-2014  |  6:15-7:15 pm


This paper is about one specific medical study of the position of the feet: that of the late Joseph M. Gambescia, M.D.  Two other previously published views about the stance of the feet on the Turin Shroud will be briefly reviewed.  But this paper will be generally confined to what we may call a "third view".

[ . . . ]

This investigation presents my own personal quest, in two parts, to seek an answer to the question:  Which of the three views of the stance of the feet are most likely to be represented by the data on the Shroud of Turin?  . . . Dr. Gambescia’s views have never before been published in any technical presentation.  This will be the first.

[ . . . ]

. . .  an important test of Dr. Gambescia’s proposal will be: Does it suggest answers to questions about intimate details in the blood markings of the Shroud that remained heretofore unexplained?  This paper will briefly explore that.

Click on the title to read the full abstract. Click here for the conference home page.


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