Another Wonderful Stephen Jones Posting on the Shroud of Turin

imageStephen Jones has another great posting on his blog. It is always a treat to read his Shroud of Turin blog. It is a great pleasure to see good history, as well:

Historian Daniel Scavone does not say that the Shroud was taken to Britain. He has showed how by a verbal confusion of Edessa‘s "Britio Edessenorum" with "Britain", the Holy Grail never existed but is actually the Shroud which was then in Edessa (now Sanliurfa, Turkey) and was never was in Britain

Read the entire posting: The Shroud of Turin: Re: Why couldn’t Joseph of Arimathea have taken the Shroud?

Thoughts for a Sunday Morning: Lunacy Uncorked

imageAt UFO Digest (which claims proof of UFOs, alien abductions and the paranormal) there is an article untitled, “Unholy Experiment: Alien Greys and Soul Harvesting.” Therein we encounter this quote:

As explained by Dr. Silverman, the Shroud of Turin contains compelling evidence of a human who transformed into pure energy and ascended back into the Godverse—an attainment defying the soul snatchers’ grand scheme to genetically harness soul migration.


imageRidiculous:  As the Shroud of Turin gains credibility from responsible scientific and historical research, it unfortunately attracts many nutcase theories. This is unfortunate because an unwary internet public might think that people who believe the Shroud is genuine buy into this crap.  I, for one, do not. There is no scientific or theological basis for this silliness. The Shroud contains no such compelling evidence.

Those of us who might be quoted incorrectly, as maybe the case here, need to be vigilant to request corrections and retractions.

Shroud Images Throughout the World

imageIn a new posting on his blog, Francis DeStefano lists about a dozen “places where images of the Shroud are located that Barrie does not mention.” That would be Barrie Schwortz at his famous website.

Go have a look at Resurrection NOW Inc. If there is something near you, go check it out. I’ve been meaning to go see the display at St. Patrick’s cathedral. Given that I’m in Manhattan about once a week, I must do so.

Paper Chase: Discrepancies in the radiocarbon dating area of the Turin shroud

imageChemistry Today, Vol 26 n 4 / July-August 2008:

Recent research reported new evidence suggesting the radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud was invalid due to the intrusion of newer material in the sampling area.

Read the entire, critically important article by M. Sue Benford and Joseph G. Marino.

The Designing Catholic Wife of an Anglican Bishop

Independent Catholic News is reporting:

imageThe Rt Rev Peter Fox, honorary assistant bishop in the Anglican diocese of Norwich, will join half a dozen fellow ministers for Clergy of the Catwalk, a special presentation of clerical clothing at the East of England Christian Resources Exhibition, (Thursday 24 February, 12.30pm, Exec Peterborough).

Among a variety of items, Peter will wear a green cope with a Tree of Life design on the back, with matching mitre made by his seamstress wife, Angie, who is a Catholic.

"Design ideas usually come to me during worship," she explained. "I wouldn’t like to admit how much designing goes on during my husband’s sermons."

May we all hope that this does not spread to America, the rest of Europe or anywhere else. If you must, read the rest of the story at Clergy on the catwalk: Bishop to model wife’s designs on Independent Catholic News

Peer Review of the Freer-Waters/Jull Paper Continued

Earlier today, Paolo Di Lazzaro offered this perspective:

It isn’t the first time that an Editor is co-author of a paper submitted to its own journal. And usually the (formal) problem is easily solved by a blind review procedure.

As an example, I faced a similar spot when I submitted two papers for publication in the Proceeding volume of IWSAI (International Workshop on the Scientific approach to the Acheiropoietos images). I was co-author of two papers and at the same time editor of the Proceedings and responsible for the choice of the Referees.

I solved this problem asking to a colleague to manage the review procedure: select the Referees, receive from each Referee the anonymous review, and send me the same reviews. She received my reply and the corrected paper and she sent it to the Referees for the final response.

In summary, there are simple rules to avoid a conflict of interest. It is likely Jull followed the same method.

Joe Marino had written:

Radiocarbon is a peer-reviewed journal but Jull is indeed the editor, so if there was peer-review, one has to wonder how rigorous it would have been. This is very similar to the late Dr. Walter McCrone’s peer-reviewed journal “The Microscope.” He published one or two Shroud articles in there, but that was literally his own journal, so once again, one has to wonder about the rigor of any article written by a principal of the journal. The circumstances of Jull’s article, much like the Arizona samples, will likely remain murky. (I was not even tempted to say “will likely remain shrouded in mystery.)

Avoiding the perception of a conflict of interest is important, as well. Prof. Jull is not only the editor of the journal, he is the Director of this National Science Foundation AMS lab. The paper that was published was the lead paper in its particular edition and it was in essence a defense of prior work at the lab in which Dr. Jull was involved.

For years to come, the particulars of the carbon dating of the Shroud of Turin will be lessons for students and examples for journalists. Since 1988, Tucson has been the subject of unanswered questions about the handling of the material and the actual way test results were handled. After six years of silence since the Rogers paper of 2005, Prof. Jull could have answered the questions about what transpired in 1988. Instead he mounted an “absence of evidence as evidence of absence” defense, with suspiciously erroneous warp and weft thread counts, that makes one wonder if this paper could have been peer-reviewed.

I do hope, however, that Paolo Di Lazzaro is right. I know him to be a careful scholar.

Again, I highly recommend Mark Oxley’s Paper at Barrie’s website.

2D to 3D

imageToday, we have touched on the 3D aspects of the Shroud of Turin images and we need to explore it more. Joe Marino wrote in the let us know about an article at It isn’t the same thing but it is interesting and undoubtedly it will become part of the discourse in the weeks and months ahead:

It is possible to construct a three-dimensional, 3D, face from flat 2D images, according to research published in the International Journal of Biometrics this month. The discovery could be used for biometrics in security applications or in forensic investigations.

Read the full article: Converting 2-D photo into 3-D face for security applications and forensics