The Shroud of Turin
Before I moved from Seattle to Torino/Turin, Demetrio tried to get me psyched about living here by reminding me that Torino was going to host the 2006 Winter Olympics. Other than that I really knew nothing about Piemonte or Torino except for the famed Shroud of Turin.
I knew it was a famous religious object/relic that is thought to have been the cloth Jesus was wrapped in after his crucifixion. I have walked in front of the church that housed The Shroud but never went inside; this week I did. The Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist/Duomo di San Giovanni Battista has had possession of The Shroud since 1578, and is located next to some Roman ruins in Torino between the Palazzo Reale (a palace of the Savoy Family) and the quadrilatero (a chic and hip part of Torino, famous for bars and restaurants) I did not get to see The Shroud but a shrunken photographic replica. The real McCoy is kept in an airtight enclosure between two glass panels, with sophisticated computer systems that regulate the temperature and humidity.
The Shroud was owned by the Savoy Family and was given to the Catholic Church by the House of Savoy in 1983. In 1988, the Vatican allowed the shroud to be dated by three independent sources--Oxford University, the University of Arizona, and the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology--and each of them dated the cloth as originating in medieval times, (1260-1390). With this bit of evidence, many skeptics think The Shroud is a hoax and not the burial cloth of Christ.
On April 11, 1997, almost exactly one year before The Shroud was to be displayed; there was a fire that gutted the cathedral. The Shroud was unscathed and returned home just four days before going on display on April 19, 1998. This was only the fourth open exhibition of the controversial holy relic in this century, other rare showings were held in 1931, 1933 and 1978. The most recent public exhibition of the Shroud was in 2000. The Shroud is only publicly displayed every 25 years; the next scheduled exhibition is in 2025. Road trip anyone?
I did some research on The Shroud and found its history fascinating. There are many unanswered questions about the image on The Shroud, its age, the red stains on it that some say is paint and others blood, look it up and find out the truth for yourself.
The image on The Shroud.
The Shrouds current resting place.
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