imageA reader writes:

I just finished reading Dr. Colin Berry’s criticism of the Shroud Center of Colorado and the paper it just published entitled, “The Shroud: A Critical Summary of Observations, Data and Hypotheses,” by Robert W. Siefker and Daniel S. Spicer. With one hand held behind my back I applaud Dr. Berry. Had he done the work he demands of others to advance his own mostly visceral notions about scorching then my applause would have been thunderous and I would have been on my feet.

I should explain something about myself. I am a physicist (and because of my significant position in a large corporation I would prefer that you not publish by name). I am also a theologically liberal Christian. For instance, I believe that the resurrection of Jesus was physical only in the sense that the body was buried in a tomb that was later found empty. Moreover, this was not because of theft or because his followers forgot which tomb it was. Nor was it because Jesus swooned and recovered. To try to add one jot to the story by imagining new scenarios us folly. This includes dematerialization and speculative resurrection products like radiation, light, heat or anything. To try to prove any of this using the shroud and because of the shroud and thus even trying to prove the resurrection is double the folly.

Nonetheless, I am almost certain that the shroud is the genuine burial cloth of Christ. And I am just as convinced that no one yet has even imagined how the image was formed. That is just as true if I a wrong about authenticity.

I should mention that Dr. Berry may have misunderstood the use of “luminance distribution” by Jackson and the Colorado authors. Thus Dr. Berry seems completely confused which leads him into an irrelevant discussion about photochemistry. Luminance, as I think the authors used the word, means the amount of reflected light as measured by a densitometer.  It has nothing to do with how the image was formed. Dr. Berry should correct this or explain why he is not confused. 

I should not be too critical of Dr. Berry for misunderstanding the all too sophomoric Colorado paper. It is confusing. And the bit about KHS and KC, as they say in the Master Card ad, PRICELESS.

BTW. Dr. Berry is every bit as agenda driven as those he accuses. They say it is hard for a scientist to notice this in himself.