screw·y 1. crazy. 2. ludicrously odd, or inappropriate.

It seems a bit dishonest or it is extremely sloppy work to directly link to Ian Wilson’s
book in a sentence that reads, “Note the further evidence that
Arizona’s first "1350 AD" radiocarbon date of the Shroud was a fraud, perpetrated by a computer hacker, allegedly
Timothy W. Linick 

imageStephen Jones is writing what should be/could be a most helpful and interesting Turin Shroud Dictionary. Wonderful, right? 

It could be. I would like it to be. Here are a couple of samples from an entry for Geoffroy I under G (split in Ga to Gm). Despite being a bit op-ed-ish, there is some interesting stuff here with many hot links that should prove useful to many people:

Geoffroy I owned (or knew he was going to own) the Shroud by 1343. In1343 Geoffroy I applied to Philip VI for funds to build and operate a chapel in Lirey with five chaplains. Geoffroy himself would contribute his inheritance from an great-aunt Alix de Joinville (1256-1336), the mother of Bishop Pierre d’Arcis (c.1300-95), which further explains Bishop d’Arcis later hostility to the exhibition of the Shroud at that same Lirey church (see future). In June that same year, 1343, King Philip donated land with an annual rental value for financing the chapel. In 1349, in a petition to the French Pope at Avignon, Clement VI (1291–1352), Geoffroy advised that he had constructed a chapel at Lirey with five canons (priests), and requested that it be raised to collegiate church. For a tiny village of 50 houses, this is evidence that Geoffroy already had the Shroud in 1343 (or knew he was going to get it), and was planning to exhibit it at that Lirey church. However, due to Geoffroy I’s second imprisonment in England 1349-51, the collegiate status of the church was not proceeded with. Nevertheless, by 1353 the church had six canons, one of whom was Dean, as well as three other clerics. Moreover in that same year, 1353, King John II agreed to a further annual revenue increase. In 1354, Geoffroy renewed his petition to the new Avignon Pope Innocent IV (c. 1195-1254), renewing hisrequest that the Lirey church be raised to collegiate status, which was granted. So from a simple rural chapel in a village of 50 fifty houses,Geoffroy was preparing his Lirey church from 1343, to be a centre of pilgrimage! Clearly the pilgrimages would be to see the Shroud (as happened in c. 1355. So Geoffroy must have owned the Shroud from no later than 1343 (or knew he was going to). And King Phillip VI must have known that Geoffroy had (or was going to get) the Shroud from at least 1343, for him to agree to fund a church with such a disproportionately large number of clergy for such a tiny village. So too must his son King John II to agree to increase funding of the Lirey church in 1353, as well as the French Avignon Popes Clement VI and Innocent IV. This places a 1343 time constraint on theories of when and how Geoffroy I de Charny obtained the Shroud (see next).

More interesting stuff. It seems well researched.

[…] This is actually stated in a 1525 document which was posted at the entrance of the rebuilt Lirey church:

"King Philip of Valois … informed that the count of Charny had got out of prison [in 1342] … sent for him … and so that the church of Lirey would be more revered and honored, he gave him the holy shroud of Our Lord, Savior and Redeemer Jesus Christ … to be put … in the church that he hoped and proposed to build …. And … gave him leave and permission to give the church, for an endowment, up to the sum of two hundred sixty livres tournois; and afterwards the king John, son of Philip of Valois, also gave the count of Charny power and permission to give and increase the foundation of the church, up to the sum of a hundred livres tournois besides the gift of his father; all in amortized rent without paying any tax, from which he released him by a special grace on account of the great and agreeable services that the count of Charny had done for them" (my emphasis)[10].

This was accepted as reliable by arch-Shroud critic Canon Ulysse Chevalier (1841–1923), and by earlier Shroud pro-authenticists Beecher (1928), Barnes (1934) and Currer-Briggs (1987). But it was rejected on inadequate grounds by both Wilson (1979 & 1998) and Crispino (1988). A sufficient reason for Philip to give Geoffroy the Shroud would be if in the 1341 battle of Angers, Geoffroy saved the life of Philip’s son, the future King John II. That would fit Geoffroy II’s explanation that the Shroud was "freely given" to his father and Geoffroy II’s daughter Marguerite’s explanation that it was "conquis par feu" ("conquered by fire"), i.e. obtained by conquest in battle, by her grandfather Geoffroy I. But there are other plausible explanations of how King Philip VI obtained the Shroud and then gave it to Geoffroy I de Charny [see future "Besançon," "Jeanne de Vergy," and "Philip VI"].

BUT THEN the entry for Geoffroy I goes screwy on us:

Geoffroy I and the Shroud’s "1350 AD" first carbon-date. Note the further evidence that Arizona’s first "1350 AD" radiocarbon date of the Shroud was a fraud, perpetrated by a computer hacker, allegedlyTimothy W. Linick [see future "hacking" and "Linick"], because in 1350 the Shroud was owned (and had been since ~1341) by the "perfect knight," Geoffroy I de Charny, author of three works on chivalry, whowould rather die (and did die) than go back on his word. The implicit claim by the 1988 radiocarbon dating of the Shroud, made explicit by Oxford’s Prof. Edward Hall (1924–2001):

"`There was a multi-million-pound business in making forgeries during the 14th century," he bluntly told a British Museum press conference. `Someone just got a bit of linen, faked it up and flogged it.’"[12]

that Geoffroy de Charny, was a party to a fraud in either having "faked" the Shroud (while he was almost fully occupied in fighting battles or as a prisoner of war), or paying (despite the fact that he was poor) a forger who "flogged" it to him, is manifestly absurd!

It seems a bit dishonest or it is extremely sloppy work to directly link to Ian Wilson’s book in a sentence that reads, “Note the further evidence that Arizona’s first "1350 AD" radiocarbon date of the Shroud was a fraud, perpetrated by a computer hacker, allegedly Timothy W. Linick

Colin Berry on STURP

imageWhen I finally got around to reading Colin’s latest posting, the words “Rambling Wreck” came to mind.  (Sorry for being so late getting around to Colin’s postings but timing is everything with him – one never knows if he is done or where he is rambling to).

To football fans (that is American football, Colin), the term "Ramblin’ Wreck" refers to Georgia Tech’s mascot, a 1930 Ford. But according to Wikipedia the term…

has been used to refer to students and alumni of Georgia Tech much longer than the car that now bears the name has been in existence. The expression has its origins in the late 19th century and was used originally to refer to the makeshift motorized vehicles constructed by Georgia Tech engineers employed in projects in the jungles of Central America. The Wrecks were constructed from whatever the engineers could find—mostly old tractor and automotive parts—and were kept running by the engineers’ ingenuity and creativity

imageDisabuse yourself of the idea that I am referring to Colin’s rambling wreck style of posting. (To find what he posts go to his blog and then search for the words “Put more simply.”)    I’m thinking more about how he uses an otherwise interesting write up on his experiments, Progress report on my new model for the Turin Shroud. Might the sepia body image be a surface film of nitrated protein derived from wheat glutens? to fire a broadside at STURP.

… Put more simply, the scientist needs to have an inkling of underlying process or mechanism in order to know where to concentrate manpower and resources. Without that inkling he or she could waste years or decades thrashing around for an answer, accumulating masses of data that throw little or no light on the problem.

Folk can probably guess where this is leading – to STURP and its technology-obsessed approach to the Shroud, arriving in Turin with all that hardware, but without a single good idea about where to concentrate resources. Indeed. most of its efforts were focused on testing a dud hypothesis, something that should have been plain to see back in 1978, and indeed in 1898, namely that the Shroud might simply be  ‘just a painting’. How could Secondo Pia’s negative image possibly have been ‘just a painting’. A negative image implies an IMPRINT, one where the template determines the final image, where there is no obligatory artistic free-hand process at the final imprinting stage. One has a master template – a real person, or maybe just a statue or bas relief- that gives a slave imprint – a tone-reversed negative of the master. Why on earth would an ad hoc task force of scientists and engineers bother to focus so much effort in testing for whether the Shroud was ‘just a painting’ when the primary objective should have been to deduce the process that resulted in a negative imprint?

STURP’s prime focus should have been on deducing (a) the nature of the template and (b) the nature of the imprinting process – whether entirely passive or human-aided. In short, the project should have been one about reverse-engineering.


Colin does a bit of Monday morning quarterbacking:

That’s the optics and physics dealt with. Now for the chemistry (and botany): is the image intrinsic to the linen carbohydrates, or is it associated with an extrinsic coating ("impurity layer")? An answer to that question could be (or have been) gained by use of high resolution light or scanning electron microscopy, especially ofcross-sections of TS body image fibres. Various mechanical and/or chemical/enzymatic procedures could have been used to remove a putative impurity coating, to see what was underneath – an intact or degraded fibre, with or with its primary cell wall. (Ah yes: the PCW – an entity that somehow fails to receive a single mention in the 1981 STURP Summary despite being the most superficial part of the linen fibre, and despite having a thickness (200nm) that corresponds, approximately, with Rogers’ estimate of TS body image thickness).

And then he dumps on Rogers, Jackson, Adler and Heller:

Overview of STURP’s damp squib (no big bang, just a handy smokescreen for some)
Why did STURP set up its straw man target (if you’ll pardon the internet lingo), i.e. that it was ‘just a painting’? Given all the effort expended in ruling out what should have been self-evident from an imprinted negative image, why did it end up telling us next to nothing positive about the TS image?

If one looks at the research activity of its demob-happy leading lights subsequent to publication of the 1981 Summary, it’s clear why the latter took the form it did. It left the road clear for   narrative-spinning pro-authenticists to drop any pretence of scientific objectivity, and to go inserting fantasies as if fact into the Shroud literature. I refer to Raymond N.Rogers with his Pliny era special pleading (starch fractions, saponins etc initally, with more later in the pipeline re spliced repair threeads and missing vanillin precursors for challenging the radiocarbon dating), to John Jackson for his  wacky radiation-imaging/collapsing cloth ideas, and to Adler and Heller for their "blood too red /trauma bilirubin" fantasies.  None of that massive self-indulgence, that wholesale retreat from strict scientific objectivity would have been possible if STURP had done its job properly, and focused on the TS as (probably, indeed almost certainly) a simple contact imprint, one requiring manual assistance, and thus consistent with the radiocarbon dating and medieval forgery.

The stultifying STURP project, with no realistic prospect of a return visit to Turin for years, nay decades, had its intended effect – to create a smokescreen-protected frozen conflict, one in which the pro-authenticity pseudo-science tendency could operate with impunity. Thank goodness that STURP’s attempts to oversee the 1988 radiocarbon dating (mixing and matching with a broader-based examination of pre-Lirey "history" was rejected. Just imagine the result: a few pen drawn circles on the Pray Codex  – the coffin lid, not Shroud as we are/were led to believe – would have been produced as a trump card, grounds for rejecting that  oh-so-arrogant  ‘error-prone’ methodology for which an endless source of contaminants can be invoked – new repair threads, bioplastic films, thymol, radiation-induced C-14, carbon monoxide, smoke …

Is the broadside justified?  Contrast Colin’s view a recent comment by John Klotz:

One of the good things that has happened recently is the leadership role now being played by Bruno Barberis at Turin Centro. At one conference he held STURP as a model for future examinations of the Shroud but a “STURP” with true international membership..

There is no question in my mind that John Klotz has carefully studied the work of STURP and understands it. I think Colin is mostly just shooting from the hip, so to speak.

Challenging the Othon de la Roche Story

imageMario Latendresse has posted a wonderful set of photographs of the castle Ray-sur-Saône, where, supposedly, Othon de la Roche kept the shroud after bringing it from Constantinople via Athens following the crusades in 1204. Along with the pictures he tells us that  it is very unlikely that Othon de la Roche was been involved with the Shroud. (And more pictures and additional narrative).

Despite several historical hypotheses of the Shroud that have been put forward involving Othon de la Roche, it is very unlikely that Othon had anything to do with the Shroud of Turin. The main reason for this conclusion is that the seed of all these hypotheses is the dissertation in favor of the authenticity of the Shroud of Besançon, written in 1714, contained in the manuscript 826 of the archives of the Besançon library. That is, all subsequent historical documents mentioning Othon de la Roche as possibly having owned the Shroud are based directly or indirectly to that dissertation. But that dissertation has no solid foundation to state that Othon de la Roche was involved with any shroud: the dissertation refers to documents that never mention that Othon received a shroud or owned any shroud. The book Le Saint Suaire de Besançon discusses these hypotheses and has a complete transcription of the manuscript 826 (in French).

Moreover, the chest still at the Ray-sur-Saône appears unlikely to have been used to bring any shroud back from Greece. …

And any hypothesis stating that the Shroud came to Lirey through Jeanne de Vergy (second wife of Geoffroy de Charny), who would have been a descendant of Othon de la Roche, is fraught with other major issues. For example, the receipt of Humbert de Villersexel, given in 1418 to the clerics of the collegiate church of Lirey, states clearly that the reliquary containing the Shroud had the coat of arms of de Charny, not of de Vergy. The son and the grand-daughter of Geoffroy de Charny also stated clearly that the Shroud was from Geoffroy de Charny, not from Jeanne de Vergy.

Did Jesus Survive the Crucifixion?

The Sudarium provides strong, independent evidence for the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin. If the Shroud is a fake, then the Sudarium must also be so. This makes the job of any potential forger close to impossible. The two cloths authenticate and validate each other and together they provide a strong case for being the original burial cloths of Jesus.

— Arif Khan

imageThe current issue of The Review of Religions, an international magazine published by the Ahmadiyya Muslim community, carries an article by Arif Khan, The Sudarium of Oviedo and the Shroud of Turin. The Review is an international magazine published by the Ahmadiyya Muslim community. It has been in print since 1902. The current cover of the print edition is pictured.

Here is what the article says about the carbon dating of the shroud:

Section 3 – Dating the Shroud & the Sudarium

The fact that the Shroud and the Sudarium were together at one time not only authenticates the Sudarium but also crucially proves the authenticity of the Shroud itself.

Ever since the carbon dating results hit the world’s media on October 13, 1988, stating the Shroud dated from 1260 – 1390 CE, there has been a major debate concerning the Shroud’s age.

Several scholars have written about why the carbon dating result for the Shroud is incorrect, the most convincing being by Raymond Rogers.[18] He argues that it is possible that it dated from the 1st Century.

The link between the Sudarium and the Shroud however, casts major doubt over the accuracy of the carbon dating result. The Sudarium is known to have existed hundreds of years prior to the 1260 – 1390 dating result attributed to the Shroud. There is documented evidence, surviving to this day in the Capitular Archives of the cathedral in Oviedo, of the Sudarium being seen by King Alfonso VI and several others on March 14, 1075.[19] The ark containing the cloth was officially opened on this day, and the event recorded. Even in 1075, it is stated that the ark had been in the church for a long time.[20]

References to a Sudarium exist from as early as the Gospels themselves, but proving the Sudarium of Oviedo was the same Sudarium is difficult. The existence of the cloth in 1075, however, is something attested to and officially recorded.

Given the proof that the Sudarium and the Shroud covered the same body, and the proof that the Sudarium was definitely in existence in 1075, the carbon dating results of the Shroud of Turin have again been thrown in to doubt.

Despite this strong evidence, it is not possible to definitively prove that both the Sudarium and the Shroud of Turin dated from the 1st Century. However, it is possible to conclude that given the proven connection between the cloths, the carbon dating result for the Shroud of Turin is incorrect.

Once the carbon dating result for the Shroud is discarded, the case for the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin outweighs claims that it is some form of fake. The strong similarities between the Sudarium and the Shroud, mean the Sudarium now has a high probability of also being authentic.

BUT, BUT, BUT:  Here is a part of the article many of this blog’s readership will find uncomfortable:

A key reason for this magazine taking an interest in the Shroud of Turin is that several scholars have argued it proves Jesusas survived the crucifixion, thus validating the belief and teaching of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas. There are Shroud researchers who have reached this exact same conclusion based upon their study of the Shroud of Turin.[21] Those that have argued this viewpoint draw attention to the large amounts of blood on the Shroud, and highlight that it would take an active heart to produce this. Others have stated that for an even formation of the image, the body would need to have been at a constant temperature, again requiring a living body. However, the scholars that hold this view concerning the Shroud are in a minority, and this is un-surprising given that it is a Catholic relic and the vast majority of those who have taken an interest in researching it come from a Christian background. Does the Sudarium shed any light on the question of Jesusas surviving the crucifixion?

The endnote 21, above, is a link address to another article by Arif Khan published in 2010 in the same magazine. Therein we find him writing about Holger Kersten and Elmar Gruber’s, “The Jesus Conspiracy” and Christopher Knight and Robert Lomas’, “The Second Messiah.”

Just yesterday, while unaware of this article, I invited Helmut Felzmann from the Shroud Science Group to write a guest posting. Dr. Felzmann, whose religious perspective is very different, believes that the shroud demonstrates that Jesus survived the crucifixion. I warned him that this is a tough crowd.  (Did I say I think the idea is very difficult to accept?  Anyway, I want my friend Helmut to have a chance to make his case. Call me biased and balanced, I guess.)

So what do you think? Any chance that Jesus survived the cross?

Colin Berry is not Seeing Red

Berry: Where did the story of the too-red blood originate?  Answer: from Adler and Heller

imageYou may have noted a comment by Charles Freeman. 

Well, we just have to disagree on the reality of the human blood. I am an independent scholar, formerly a Senior Examiner of the International Baccalaureate;s critical thinking programme, Theory of Knowledge, and thus used to looking at evidence or asking those who know.

I had the Heller/Adler papers read by a professor emeritus of physiology who said that their claims that this was blood were totally unconvincing. I show the bloodstains to any forensic expert i can find and they all say they have never seen dried blood that red.

So I am not working on the understanding that this is blood.

Why can’t the STURP tests be replicated 37 years on? Have they lost the tapes???

Caption:  Robert Downey Jr. telling Charles Freeman that everything looks too red.

Will we ever learn the name of any of Charles’ many experts du jour. But that isn’t the point.  The point is that Charles is playing the blood-is-too-red card, perhaps too carelessly, something that Colin Berry in one of his overly long, topic-drift postings picked up on. In fact, Colin, is challenging the very notion that the blood is too red.

Let’s see some of what he has to say by clicking in and scrolling down until you spot Charles Freeman’s name for the fourth time:

Er, which photograph(s) of the TS show the blood as "too red"? How come after 3 years of looking at TS photographs, I have yet to see them?

It can’t be the 1931 Enrie photographs, since they are B/W. It can’t be the 2002 Durante pictures, at least those that appear on Mario Latendresse’s Shroud Scope, since the colour of the blood in those  pictures is scarcely distinguishable from the body image, the entire look being a dull plum.

Durante 2002 (from Shroud Scope): blood too red?

(The first thing I do with Shroud Scope pictures is put then into MS Office Picture Manager and adjust brightness/contrast/midtone from 0,0,0 to -7/100/15 in order to get the blood looking redder). So which photos are Charles Freeman showing to his buttonholed experts? Maybe those Halta pictures on the iPad app, recently described (aptly methinks) as mere toys?

Blood too red? …

Or maybe the BBC’s earlier release in 2008 of Halta pictures that do show a rosy hue in places where it’s not expected, but in prominent areas of body image, not blood especially.

Halta image from BBC site (2008). Some pink coloration – but it’s mainly in the beard and other body-image locations.

Finally, let’s not forget the Turin custodians’ own site with a selection of TS views, essentially the same it would appear as those on Shroud Scope.No, the bloodstains do not look too red. Indeed, they do not look red at all.

Where did the story of the too-red blood originate?  Answer: from Adler and Heller, who said in writing the blood was too red, the porphyrin spectrum was atypical, and thus was born the "trauma bilirubin/acid methemoglobin" claim, …

Barrie M.Schwortz has been responsible over the years for proselytising the "blood abnormally red" description, and his admiration for Alan Adler’s pro-authenticity narrative-friendly bilirubin explanation. …

Misleading impression of ‘redness’ created by high magnification/strong illumination? RGB reference standards for comparison? Might the colours also have been digitally adjusted in a manner that accentuated redness?

That still leaves unanswered the question as to which photograph Charles Freeman showed to his forensic experts or emeritus professor of physiology. I shan’t bother asking him directly. I’ve wasted too much time already – putting innumerable points and questions to someone who persistently displays a blissful indifference to the hard facts – and getting back nothing useful in return.

Remember the fun days?  Anyone remember Let’s Talk Red Blood: Bilirubin, Saponaria officinalis and UV?  All those other people believing the blood is too red.  Colin wasn’t questioning it then, was he?

Fascinating Video from Dave Hines

Link =

He writes in YouTube:

This part 1 series of 3 videos goes into how Jesus was buried 1st. Blood stains 1st. We cannot talk about the image formation until we 1st address the blood stains and other aspects of the image that are result of body to cloth contact.

Shroud image is the result of both body to cloth contact and another aspect of the Shroud image is a non contact image.

I want to make it clear I am not proposing that the Shroud image is a contact image only.
We will get into the discussion of what aspect of the Shroud is a non contact image in Part 2 of this series.

In the 2nd video will show how the myrrh resin applied to the cloth will convert the linen into a holographic film plate.

We will demonstrate live on film a laser beam bounced off the figure and then diffracted and the interference pattern recorded on the linen.

Part of the Shroud Image is in fact a hologram.

We will prove that beyond any reasonable doubt.

This is not just a theory I am proposing but you are going to see a up close and personal genuine demonstrated reality in front of your own eyes. "seeing is believing" and you are going to see.

Maybe for the 1st time in your entire life.

One of our goals in this video is to silence the voice of the skeptic once and for all. When we are done there will not be a single witness left to testify against Jesus of Nazareth.

The Man in the Shroud/Jesus is going to get the fair trail he did not get back in 1st Century. This time he is going to be set free along with the viewer. Permanent freedom from the spirit of fear. Spirit of joy will replace it. No one should have to live with a sick spirit of fear. We are setting out to free people of it, so they can have a chance of having a genuine, successful and happy life.

Shroud of Turin is a witnessing tool only so that one may "come to believe in a power greater then themselves that can restore the normal function of the mind and body.

One of the greatest sensations in the world that people spend millions of dollars to experience is freedom. It is positively exhilarating and spirit uplifting. You can have that sensation for free.

The truth revealed in this series of videos, will set you permanently free and it will not cost you one penny to do so, in accordance with the will of the Spirit of God. Spirit of God is not a paper and coin chaser and does not need to know your credit card number or access to your bank account.

He simply does not care how much money you have. It is something else the Spirit of God seeks from you. We suggest sending him a "knee mail" message to figure out what that is exactly.

A Treasure of Reading Material

Thank you, Enrico Simonato

imageWe have received copies of six handouts from the International Centre of Sindonology May 2nd meeting that have been translated into English. These have been provided to us by Enrico  Simonato, the organization’s secretary:



Shroud-like coloration of linen by ultraviolet radiation by Paolo Di Lazzaro Chief of research, ENEA ENEA Research Centre, via E. Fermi 45, 00044 Frascati (Rome, Italy)

Palynology: instrument of research for the relics of the Shroud of Turin and the Sudarium of Oviedo by Marzia Boi

The role of historical research within the Shroud studies by Gianmaria Zaccone


There are two more handouts that are still to be translated.  I’ll post those when they arrive.

Colin Berry On Rogers and Arnoldi Paper

imageYesterday, Colin Berry, in one of his updates to his seemingly always evolving and meandering long postings, tells us what he would have done had he been refereeing Rogers’ and Arnoldi’s paper, “THE SHROUD OF TURIN: AN AMINO-CARBONYL REACTION (MAILLARD REACTION) MAY EXPLAIN THE IMAGE FORMATION”, which appeared in the peer-reviewed journal Melanoidins:

Had the paper come to me for refereeing… it would have been rejected out of hand.

I’d have appended the following specific comments to the author and journal Editor:

1. Do not go citing Pliny the Elder out of the blue, begging the question re Shroud authenticity, implying that the radiocarbon dating can be safely ignored.  Oh no it cannot. The author might think it invalid, based on his examination of a few threads illicitly removed from the radiocarbon sample, with a subsequent gap in the chain of custody. But he cannot expect others to take his rejection as the consensus position in science. It’s not. Indeed, the manner in which Pliny has been insinuated into the above text suggests strongly that Raymond N.Rogers was not strictly neutral and disinterested on the subject of authenticity when he penned the above paper, making it worryingly possible that he was not  neutral at the time he worked with STURP in 1978. It’s my belief that Rogers was a closet authenticist. If he considered the radiocarbon dating, then he as STURP’s chemical team leader should have been the one to press for a repeat dating – not to go tacitly assuming authenticity. Science has to be totally objective in its written PEER-REVIEWED publications.

2.The presence of starch "confirmed" with a reagent that designed to test for something entirely different? The correct reagent for detecting starch is a solution of iodine in potassium iodide, which gives a blue-black inky colour with starch. A solution of iodine in sodium azide, intended to detect sulphoproteins, one that gives a totally different colour (red), CANNOT be assumed to be testing for starch UNLESS VALIDATING TESTS ARE REPORTED.  They were not. We are asked to accept that iodine/azide is a dual purpose reagent. Who says? Neither does it inspire confidence to see a reference to "amilose", it being AMYLOSE needless to say. Secondly the differentiation between amylose (straight chain starch) and the unmentioned amylopectin (branched chain starch) simply cannot be inserted into a scientific account without a word of explanation. In nay case, the two components of starch were not properly recognized as distinct chemical entities until the 1940s. Their relevance to colorimetric tests for starch is highly questionable to say the least, unless dealing with genetic variants of wheat that are enriched in one or the other (e.g. waxy maize starches that are almost entirely amylopectin, which gives a red or purple colour with iodine/potassium iodide). What we see here is at best sloppy and imprecise unscientific reporting that should never have got past the referees.

3. There is no conclusive evidence that starch or other polysaccharides and/or sugars are  present on the Shroud, and even if the red colour with iodine/azide were admissible evidence, for which no assurance is offered, the evidence for that was from Adler and Heller. One CANNOT GO BASING MAJOR CLAIMS (as Roger’s "starch fraction/Maillard hypothesis" has become a major claim) on evidence from other workers, in other laboratories, that is little more than anecdotal.


Rejecting Authenticity Out of Hand

imageA reader writes:

Recently, I met with nine lay people from other churches in our town to discuss having combined adult education classes, a very scary idea since we represent different Protestant denominations.

While brainstorming ideas I asked if there was any interest in the Shroud of Turin.  Only two hands went up. Why no interest, I asked. There were shrugs. Then someone remarked that it was certainly not real.  Why not, I asked.  It just can’t be said a chorus of voices.

It just can’t be wasn’t a good enough answer. Why, I said again, then added, what about the carbon dating. I got puzzled stares.  Someone finally said the carbon dating could not be right because the Shroud of Turin can’t be real. Everyone nodded in agreement.

I thought you would find this amusing. BTW we decided to have a class on the Shroud of Turin if I could find a Catholic priest to conduct it.  It took only one phone call.

I’ve run into many people who reject the shroud’s possible authenticity out of hand.

John Klotz, the Blind men, the Elephant and the Shroud of Turin

imageJohn Klotz has posted The Blind men, the Elephant and the Shroud of Turin on his blog. Have a look. He is right, of course:

As I have written, more than once, I find the community skeptical of the Shroud of Turin much like the blind men and the elephant. This morning, exasperated as usual by the "experts," who seek to cram the issue of Shroud authenticity in their area of expertise (like the art historian who claims to have solved the "mystery" of the image) I decided to do a little (very) research. My view is that there are three general disciplines with subgroups that must be addressed and an approach founded on only one or two of them will always come-up short: Religion, History and Science. …


Yet, I can not escape my observation that when I read and participate in discussions and debate about the Shroud, so many are either side of the authenticity side of the argument seem like blind men (and women) arguing about the nature of an elephant. This morning I did a little research on the blind men issue and found on the web via Wikipedia the following couplet which is attributed to Buddha:

"O how they cling and wrangle, some who claim
For preacher and monk the honored name!
For, quarreling, each to his view they cling.
Such folk see only one side of a thing."

Jainism and Buddhism. Udana 68-69:

Parable of the Blind Men and the Elephant

Twitter: Mayor of Bethlehem Visits Shroud of Turin Exposition

imagePalestinian Vera George Mousa Baboun (Arabic: فيرا جورج موسى بابون), a Roman Catholic, a member of the Fatah party and the first woman to serve as mayor of Bethlehem, pictured here while visiting the Shroud Exposition in Turin.

Picture sourced from official Sindone2015 exposition and Vera Baboun’s Tweets

Shroud Prompted Return to Faith for August Accetta

This 56 minute EWTN video was published on YouTube May 15, 2015:

Dr. Accetta was raised Catholic attending Mass every Sunday and praying the Rosary every day. In Medical School, he stopped practicing his faith and became an agnostic. While in residence he met his wife who was a devout Evangelical Protestant. His return to faith began with an interest in the medical evidence in the Shroud of Turin. He became so interested that he opened the Shroud of Turin Center of Southern California. Though he was again a Christian, for a time he was a Fundamentalist Protestant. A study of history and theology eventually led him back Home to the Catholic Church.

Paolo Di Lazzaro to Speak at Fiat Lux Conference

in the company of Nobel Prize winners and many other prominent speakers

From the Program of the Fiat Lux Conference:



Paolo Di Lazzaro
Chief of Research, ENEA Research Centre of Frascati

The Shroud of Turin is a linen cloth bearing the front and back body images of what appears to be a crucified man. Although it is considered one of the archaeological objects most studied in history, nobody was able to replicate the microscopic complexity of the chemical and physical characteristics of its faint images. After countless attempts, the inability to replicate the image on the Shroud prevents formulating a reliable hypothesis on the process of the image formation.

In this talk we summarize the experiments done at the ENEA Research Centre of Frascati, which have demonstrated the ability of vacuum ultraviolet light pulses lasting few nanoseconds to generate a Shroud-like coloration on linen that matches many characteristics of the Shroud image.

Our results are fascinating, and to some extent suggestive about the hypothesis of image formation, but cannot lead to definitive conclusions. We never addressed the theological and philosophical issues, that go beyond our scientific expertise, on how it is possible generating these specific radiation pulses at the time of the formation of the Shroud image. We have dealt with only about a topic that is within our expertise, namely the understanding of the photochemistry processes able to generate a peculiar linen coloration that has many features in common with the image on the Shroud. The implications of our findings are left to scholars competent in theology, metaphysics and philosophy.

Science must recognize its limits, and at the same time we cannot remain indifferent to the charm of an object like the Shroud of Turin in which the physics of light, chemistry, medicine, history, metaphysics and philosophy meet and overlap each other, in an unprecedented attempt to solve a multifaceted enigma.

Guest Posting: The Shroud of Turin – An X-Ray?

imageIn 1999, investigative reporter Linda Moulton Howe interviewed the now-late chemist Dr. Giles Carter.  The interview was posted on her site, Earthfiles. Because the interview is behind a subscriber wall, Linda has kindly given Joe Marino permission to reproduce the (copyrighted) interview below as it appears on her site.

The Shroud of Turin – An X-Ray?

© 1999 by Linda Moulton Howe

May 23, 1999 Clemson, South Carolina – Back in the early 1980’s while I was Director of Special Projects at the CBS station in Denver, Colorado, I read a newspaper report about an American Chemical Society meeting in which a chemist named Giles Carter from Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Michigan presented a formal paper entitled: Formation of the Image on the Shroud of Turin by X-rays: A New Hypothesis. (© 1982 Giles F. Carter, Ph.D., Eastern Michigan University Chemistry Department, Ypsilanti, Michigan received for review Oct. 6, 1982 and accepted for publication April 18, 1983, American Chemical Society Volume on Archaeological Chemistry.)

I was so provoked by this news that I called Dr. Carter up to talk about the laboratory work that had helped him come to this startling idea. Dr. Carter received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley where he specialized in x-ray diffraction to determine crystal structures. He went on to be a Professor of Chemistry at Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, and is now Professor Emeritus. Dr. Carter began studying Roman coins with x-ray fluorescence in 1963. Over the next 32 years until he retired in 1995, Dr. Carter used x-ray fluorescence continually in his university work analyzing hundreds of coins, elements and metals. In 1981, he attended a Shroud of Turin Research Project in New London, Connecticut and saw slides of the image on the Shroud for the first time.


Giles Carter, Ph.D., retired Professor of Chemistry and X-Ray Fluorescence Expert from Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, Michigan: "It was at that time, I noticed from the slides what appeared to be possibly x-ray images of fingers and also of teeth. And that began, or gave me the idea that perhaps low energy x-rays were involved in the formation of these images on the Shroud. Then, when I went home to East Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Michigan, I carried out some experiments similar to what I had done with the analysis of Roman coins — namely I placed samples of cloth in the x-ray beam and exposed that to the x-rays for different periods of time. And noticed that I did indeed get images formed on the cloth. And these images did appear certainly in color similar to what I had seen in the slides, because I had not seen the Shroud of Turin directly myself. Never have.

So, I carried out quite a few experiments exposing cloth to various exposures, putting aluminum foil in the path of the x-rays which absorbed the low energy x-rays and when I did that I didn’t get much of an image at all. And that proved that most of the image I was getting was from low energy x-rays which was my hypothesis in the first place. 
After producing a number of these, I took a trip out to Calif. For to see family and at that time I arranged to see Vernon Miller who was the official photographer in the 1978 testing that the STURP scientists did.

At that time, Vernon Miller said, "Oh, this coloration is just like the coloration on the Shroud." And at that point, he gave me a nice enlargement of the hand of the Shroud. And this helped to convince me even more that what a lot of people called the "too long fingers" and the shortened wrist actually was both an image from the surface and an x-ray image all at the same time. And that would be in agreement with my hypothesis that a lot of the Shroud image was actually formed from low energy x-rays.


My hypothesis for that is that higher energy x-rays which are more penetrating emanated from the bones of this individual and passed through the skin and at the surface of the skin interacted with elements such as sodium and chlorine from salts and chloride on the surface or from sulfur or phosphorous in the skin. And these elements then, like sodium and chlorine, gave off secondary x-rays which are very low in energy and not penetrating at all. And it’s these x-rays that actually caused most of the image, or all of the image, of the Shroud.

Now, people have asked me: Where did the x-rays from the bones come from? And I cannot answer that question. If one believes that the Shroud of Turin actually covered the body of Christ, then one would say, "Well, from the Resurrection Process." But no scientist can say anything about a resurrection process because there is no direct experience with that other than perhaps the Shroud, but we don’t know about that at all. So, in other words, scientifically you can say nothing about the Resurrection Process.

On the other hand, artistically it’s rather interesting — for instance, in the film ET, the extraterrestrial or alien was resurrected by a strong beam of light. I always thought that was rather curious that they would choose that sort of thing. And who knows, what the Resurrection Process was for Christ according to Christian belief. No one knows about that. No scientists can really do anything other than speculate.

So again, I had offered one explanation that perhaps there was radiation in the rocks around where the body was laid. But one of my friends said, "That really is not a very good explanation." And I agree. That’s very, very weak and I doubt that happened. Basically, I have no explanation.


The only thing that I would say is that some form of energy would have been necessary to enter the bones to cause x-rays to emanate from the bones. And that would cause the secondary, or even tertiary at this point, x-rays from the skin to come out. So, what that energy source was — the external energy source entering the bones — I really don’t know about that. It’s just beyond us , beyond me to speculate on that. I really can’t say.


Well, there have been several hypotheses put forward to explain in certain peoples minds why the Carbon 14 dating was wrong. My own feeling on that is that linen fibrils are hollow and the sample taken from the Shroud for the Carbon 14 dating was taken from absolutely the worst possible place — namely, one lower corner which was right next to the edge of the Shroud and it was also the corner, or one of the corners, where people handled it the most. Now if people handled that or if materials were put on the Shroud in an attempt to preserve it hundreds of years ago, it’s possible that over along period of time that some of these organic materials could have diffused or moved through the linen fibrils and into the interior. Now, if this is the case, it would have been impossible through just a short cleaning, using just solvents which the scientists used before the Carbon-14 testing — it would have been impossible to remove that interior carbon-containing material.


Right, they would be measuring more recent carbon-containing material, maybe from 100 or 200 years ago, or something like that. So they would just be getting the average age coming out around 1300 A.D.


That’s possible. And that’s why I think the Carbon-14 dating should be repeated and done very carefully according to the procedure that the Shroud of Turin Research Project outlined in the first place. Their procedure was NOT followed at all in the Carbon-14 testing. So, the whole testing process was — in the opinion of many scientists, not done very well. It’s not that the carbon-14 test itself was poor. I think most everyone says that the laboratories are capable of getting good results from the sample they have. But it’s namely, a sampling problem. So always in an analysis, you have both a problem of sampling. Is the sample what you want it to be? Is it representative of the material that you want analyzed? And then is the analysis itself correct? There are two different problems. The analysis itself could be correct, but if the sampling is not done correctly, then the end result is going to be wrong.


That’s correct. There’s one other factor there and that is that the sample that was taken for the Carbon-14 analysis was removed from a position adjacent to a side panel which had been sewn onto the Shroud. It wasn’t sewn on using thread or anything like that. It was actually WOVEN on to the material, so some of the weaving from that side panel was actually in some of those fibers in the sample that was removed for the Carbon-14 date. No one knows when that side panel of 6-inches or so was applied to the Shroud. No one knows that! And here again, those more possibly recent fibrils could have affected the Carbon-14 dates.


That’s a good question! It remains unanswered. The Italian authorities decided to change where the sample was removed and perhaps they did that because there was political pressure applied over there. Many years ago I attended a meeting in Naples with the scientist who was in charge of advising the Roman Catholic Church about the Shroud and he told me enormous political pressures had been applied on him in the past about the Shroud. There were many people in Italy and Europe who first of all were opposed to scientists examining the Shroud at all.

Secondly, they were opposed to scientists from the United States being so heavily involved. They wanted more Italians and more Europeans represented. So, here again, it’s difficult to know what happened there. No one really knows outside the people who were really there at the time. And I think we can only speculate that maybe pressure had been brought to bear — no, we will not follow the STURP, which was American-proposed procedure for doing the Carbon-14. We will do it according — we will take a sample from a place that won’t be noticed in the future from the Shroud — take it from that lower corner. And only have 3 labs run the carbon-14, instead of 7 labs. And have it done by only one method instead of two methods which the STURP had proposed."

Photograph is from the Eastern Michigan University Department of Chemistry Newsletter published in the Spring of 2011.

I Tried to Ignore the Carbon Dating Computer Hacking Conspiracy Theory

imageA reader from Hampton, Virginia writes:

I was reading Stephen Jones’s latest blogging on the carbon dating and have come up with a wacky theory.  Jones has it wrong. Computer hacker Karl Koch, thought by Jones to be a KGB stooge, didn’t die at all.  After all as Jones tells it, “German police were alerted of an abandoned car in a forest near Celle. When they went to investigate, they found an abandoned car, that looked like it had been there for years, as it was covered in dust. Near to the car they found a burned corpse (Koch). His shoes were missing and have never been found.”

His shoes have never been found. So how do we know it was Koch?  If you add a few years, a beard and a stocking cap you can plainly see that Koch is probably Chris Roberts who was arrested yesterday for hacking the inflight entertainment system of a flight he was on and supposedly issuing a command to one of the planes’ engines.

Have you read Jones’s latest posting?  It is more off the wall.

Yes.  I always read what Stephen writes.  Sometimes he posts some very useful or interesting information. When I think it warrants attention by others, I mention it.  I’ve pretty much given up discussing his conspiracy theory that the computers used during the carbon dating of the shroud were hacked.  Who knows; maybe someday his hypothesis will be shown to be right. But for now, I see it as wild conjecture without a shred of evidence. And now, for you have sucked me in to it, dear reader, I must quote a couple of paragraphs and a loose sentence to make my point:

If it turned out that Koch could not possibly have been involved, either directly or indirectly, in installing Linick’s program on Zurich and Oxford laboratories’ AMS control console computers, then my theory would not be falsified. In that case I would have to maintain that Linick’s program was installed on those laboratories’ computers by some other way. For example, Linick himself could have flown over to Zurich and Oxford, installed his program clandestinely on their computers, and returned to Arizona, in a few days. This is why my theory always has been "that the radiocarbon dating laboratories were duped by a computer hacker" (singular).


I have included Karl Koch in my theory, despite there being as yet no confirmed link between Koch and Linick, because of: 1) the striking coincidence that both Koch and Linick died of suspected suicide within days of each other … 2) Koch’s death was almost certainly the work of the KGB, or the East German Secret Police (Stasi) at the behest of the KGB; 3) the KGB had no reason to kill Koch unless he had been involved in an entirely different type of hacking for them which they did not want to become public knowledge; 4) Koch’s expertise would have been useful in hacking into Zurich and Oxford’s AMS computers; and 5) Koch’s living in Germany would have made it comparatively easy for him to travel to Zurich and Oxford to install Linick’s program on their computers (although that too is not necessary to my theory as Koch may have only provided expert advice on how to hack into those computers and a KGB operative may have entered the laboratories clandestinely and installed Linick’s program on their AMS computers, or Linick himself may have installed it).

So those who continue to dismiss my theory as merely a "conspiracy theory," in the full knowledge of my above disclaimers, do so dishonestly.

What else would you call it?  This is the epitome of conspiracy theory.

Tweeted Picture for Today: Endless Emotion


The Tweet:   @ sogno93 : Torino @ Sindone2015 endless emotion .

Sergio Mattarella Visit to the Shroud Exposition

Christians of various denominations, believers of other religions and non-believers have come to the Shroud drawn to that image of suffering and hope, but also to witness to a common desire for peace, rejection of violence, and of hope.

imageA statement by the Archbishop of Turin, Monsignor Cesare Nosiglia, on the occasion of the visit of Sergio Mattarella, the President of Italy to the Shroud of Turin exposition (Google Translation):

The visit of the Head of State to the Shroud marks a moment of joy for the Church of Turin. The Italian pilgrims account for over 90% of visitors of the exposition, the passage of the President is an important encouragement, and a recognition of how devotion the Shroud is rooted and widespread in our country.  But this visit makes honor to the entire city and the whole of Piedmont, the "system Torino" who organized and is building the exposition. A system that involves, together with the local church, public institutions and culture, private companies, banking foundations. Around the group of promoters has formed a broad and varied "movement" of cooperation, support, cultural, commercial and service initiatives. The Torino which is building the renaissance has also found in the monstrance a "catalyst" of resources and energy that allows us to hope. Also because the rebirth of the city can not be only economic: we need a new model of social and cultural development, a new ability to relationships solidarity between citizens.

Especially the exhibition of the Shroud enhances quality, that of hospitality, so important to overcome the many divisions that today through the states, peoples and religions. Christians of various denominations, believers of other religions and non-believers have come to the Shroud drawn to that image of suffering and hope, but also to witness to a common desire for peace, rejection of violence, and of hope.

Colin Berry: The Scourge Marks are Frankly Not Credible

When someone is flayed with a Roman flagrum, one expects to see the skin ripped to shreds,
with blood flows to match. One does not expect to see neat imprints

imageIs that so?  Has this idea been investigated?

Colin had written a comment:

The crucial point surely is that there is no imaging of “wounds” or “injuries” as such on the sepia body image of the TS – absolutely none. The evidence for “wounds” and “injuries” rests entirely on the position of bloodstains at various locations. Even the “scourge marks” showing the dumb-bell shapes etc of skin-lacerating or indenting metal or bone tips are (we’re told) solely blood imprints – there’s no corroborating evidence in the body image.

The reliance on bloodstains alone to support the biblical narrative (scourging, crown of thorns, nails wounds, lance wound) with no supporting evidence whatsoever in the body image is entirely consistent with medieval forgery. Indeed, it’s hard to think of an alternative explanation – unless one’s view of the TS is “authentic until proven otherwise” (an authenticity-endorsing or promoting ‘sindonological’ position, as distinct from one that is strictly neutral, dispassionately scientific).

Thibault Heimburger replied:

I never understood what you mean by “imaging of wounds …”  What do you expect to see on a linen on contact with a bloody wound? I would expect to see exactly what we see on the TS.

Can you explain?

Colin then writes:

Maybe nothing. But I’m not the one who constantly refers to “wounds” or “injuries” for which there’s no independent and corroborating evidence in the body image, merely blood that is in locations that fit the biblical narrative. It’s to do with the burden of proof.

When someone is flayed with a Roman flagrum, one expects to see the skin ripped to shreds, with blood flows to match. One does not expect to see neat imprints correspondingly exactly with the shape of the metal or bone pellets, as if all they did was to produce contusions with just the right amount of weeping blood to “imprint” an image, with no surplus to obscure and thus ‘spoil’ the image. The scourge marks are frankly not credible, except as the work of a forger intent on creating over-simplified neat and geometric patterns that lack both realism and credibility.

Christianity in Sharp Decline in the U.S.

imageI hadn’t planned to cover this story: America’s Changing Religious Landscape: Christians Decline Sharply as Share of Population; Unaffiliated and Other Faiths Continue to Grow by the Pew Research Center. It did get a lot of attention. The AP put out a piece that was picked up by news outlets around the world.  Some papers, particularly those with ingrained secular agendas seemed gleeful.

The story was off topic.  But Russ Breault saw it differently. The story made it to the Facebook page for Shroud Encounter. While linking to the AP story on AOL, Russ tells us:

A woman once told me she loves the Shroud because "It makes it real". Apparently more and more people are having a hard time accepting the reality of Christ and the ransom He paid for all of us on the cross. This is not a good trend. Be wary of tipping points. Our culture is fast falling away from its spiritual foundation. Pray that we as a nation return to our first love (Rev 2:4).

For stories like this I like to see what Get Religion is saying. Here is Julia Duin:

Most mainstream reporters took their cue from the report’s headline: Christians Decline Sharply as Share of Population; Unaffiliated and Other Faiths Continue to Grow. They seemed unaware there’s been a ton of books out in the past seven years about increasing numbers of disaffected Christians – especially the young – who are leaving church. More on that old-news angle later.

To sum it up, the "nones" (2012 study found here) are still growing, other religions are up a bit or holding their own and mainline Protestants and Catholics are declining very, very fast. Evangelical Protestants, now the dominant stream of the nation’s Protestants at 55 percent, went down by less than 1 percent, hardly a “sharp” decline. But it took some scribes awhile to arrive at that important distinction.


Some of the headlines were almost celebratory about the nones who now “soar” as the Christians decline. Notice the headline on this RNS story, which gave a pretty evenhanded report on the survey and some good information on the “nones” ….

So what does this have to do with the shroud?  What might it have to do …?

An American Jew in Favor of Authenticity

modern science is still incapable

imageDICI, the communication arm of the Priestly Society of St. Pius X (SSPX – founded by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre) has an article about Barrie Schwortz’ position on the shroud. The dateline is May 15, 2015, Italy:  An American Jew in favor of the authenticity of the Holy Shroud of Turin:

  Among its fiercest defenders is Barrie Schwortz, and orthodox Jew from Los Angeles. A professional photographer, he was the head of documentary and scientific photography during the first research on the cloth in 1978. He declares that modern science is still incapable of explaining how the image was formed on the cloth. According to him, several factors prove its authenticity.

As a photographer, he considers that the image itself is the most convincing element. “It has properties that I have never seen in any other image,” he insists, recalling that in the last four decades, no one has been able to duplicate or create a print with the same chemical or physical properties.

He also reveals that the counterfeit artists of the Middle Ages were far from having the necessary knowledge to reproduce the anatomical elements revealed by the forensic study of the image, especially the blood flow, which corresponds perfectly with the anatomy and physiology of blood circulation and coagulation.

Barrie Schwortz ends by pointing out that the scientific debates will “probably never be resolved,” partly “because the research is biased by huge ideological implications.”

It goes to word selection. It is probably nothing more than crappy paraphrasing when we read, “modern science is still incapable.”  No, no, of course not. Science isn’t incapable. It is better to report that modern science is still without an answer.

Arvo Pärt’s La Sindone

West Virginia Public Broadcasting (PBS and NPR) is reporting that the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra is closing out their 2014-15 season tonight with a concert that features Arvo Pärt’s La Sindone–a deep, mysterious, and emotional journey describing the Shroud of Turin.

There is some interesting discussion (audio) on the webpage and a brief sample of the music at the 3:25 mark.

There is also a wonderful nine minute long rendition of the music on YouTube from  "Pärt: La Sindone" by Tõnu Kaljuste. The same recording is also available at AmazonMP3 (free for Prime members).


The Wheeling Symphony Orchestra is bidding farewell to the 2014-2015 season by performing a series of masterpieces by great composers, both old and new, during their concert on May 15th, 2015 7:30 PM at the Capitol Theater in Wheeling.

This concert features Arvo Pärt’s La Sindone–a deep, mysterious, and emotional journey describing the Shroud of Turin.

Of One Family’s Visit to the Shroud in Turin

imageMark Armstrong writes of One Family’s Novena to Italy—From Pisa to Turin and the Shroud for The Integrated Catholic Life:

My interest in the Shroud dates back to 1981 when Patti and I were first married.  Back then, Dr. John Jackson, part of a team that examined the Shroud in 1978, gave a presentation from the findings of the Shroud of Turin Research Project to the public in Portland, Oregon.

After that talk, I began to read and study all the information about the Shroud that I could find in those pre-internet days.  In the 1990s, as a radio talk show host,  I would often invite authors with new books about the Shroud to be guests for my shows.  I would learn even more through these books and interviews about what most believe to be the actual burial cloth of Christ.  After my visit here in during the 2010 exhibition, I began to write articles for ICL and other websites and give presentations about the Shroud.


It is a fact that no Catholic would ever be required to believe the Shroud is the actual burial cloth of Christ.  And it is also true that Catholics will not be the only ones among the more than two million people who will see the Shroud over the three months it is on display this year.  The Shroud is respected by most Christians faiths, including Baptists, Lutherans, Methodists, Orthodox, Pentecostals and non-Christians too.  There are of course many others who come to Turin who are just curious and some, ironically, profess no belief in God.  All will spend sometimes hours in line as they come here for a three-minute viewing.


In my humble opinion, the Shroud is an enigma and was best described by one of the faithful in the sixth century as, “the image not made by human hands.”  More on the science of the Shroud and some of the other incredible sights of Turin tomorrow.

There is more. And there is more to come. See the Mark Armstrong page