image Before modern communications, a ship might have been lost at sea with no one knowing why. However, if there was a known storm, it was often assumed that the storm was the cause. Insurers of vessels and cargo might then claim that the loss of a ship was an “act of God.”

If the Shroud of Turin is authentic, as I believe it is, I must then wonder if we can make any assumption of when the images were formed? Not how but when ?During an energetic storm of resurrection? At the time of a resurrection event or at some other time between burial and the discovery of the open tomb? Before? After? When?

If we can take the creedal harrowing of Hell (Hades, Sheol, netherworld, abode of the dead) literally then we must wonder why not then, when Christ visited the abode of the dead. Though I see it as a largely metaphorical or symbolic statement, we must remember that many in the Anglican, Catholic, Eastern Orthodox and Lutheran influenced Protestant and Evangelical traditions do take it in a very literal way. If so, then does this in terms of real historical time, precede a physical resurrection or is it part of the same? How can we know? Theology and catechistic declarations do not settle the question.

And how can we know if the “when” was not perhaps another event, unknown to us from the Gospels in the same way the Resurrection “moment” is not described. In fact, could the Resurrection have been a slow process, even a multi-step process, taking hours or days?

How can we begin to speculate that the image on the Shroud was formed by a flash of light, radiation during dematerialization or anything else unless we wonder about when?