St. Steven’s Catholic Community presents: Shroud Encounter

Shroud Encounter will be coming to St. Steven’s Catholic Church located at 24827 S. Dobson Road in Sun Lakes, Arizona, on Sunday, March 29 at 2:00 p.m. An admission of $10 will be applied towards our new sanctuary. A museum quality life-size replica will be on display.

Shroud Encounter is a production of the Shroud of Turin Education Project, Inc. and will be presented by international expert Russ Breault. The presentation is a fast moving, big screen experience using over 200 images covering all aspects of shroud research.

Mr. Breault has been featured in several national documentaries seen on CBS, History Channel and Discovery. He was interviewed last year for Good Morning America to discuss the latest research. He has presented at numerous colleges and universities including Duke, West Point, John Hopkins, Penn State and many others. See for more information.

The Shroud of Turin is the most analyzed artifact in the world and remains a mystery. The 14-foot long linen cloth has been in Turin, Italy, for over 400 years and bears the faint front and back image of a 5 foot 10 inch bearded, crucified man with apparent wounds and bloodstains that match the crucifixion account as reported in the Bible. Millions of people over the centuries have believed that it is the actual burial shroud of Jesus. The historical trail tracks back through Italy, France, Asia Minor (Turkey) and may have originated in the Middle East according to botanical evidence.

A team of 24 scientists in 1981 concluded that it was not the work of an artist. They found no visible trace of paint, pigment, dye or other artistic substances on the cloth. The blood is a Type AB with human DNA as determined in 1995. Skeptics have mounted numerous attempts to show how a medieval artist could have produced the image but all have been inadequate to fully explain how it was formed. If the cloth indeed wrapped a corpse, there are no stains of body decomposition.

The shroud was largely dismissed in 1988 when three carbon dating labs indicated a medieval origin. However, chemical research published in a peer review scientific journal in 2005 showed that the single sample cut from the outside corner edge may not have been part of the original shroud material. In violation of the sampling protocol, only one sample was used for dating and was cut from the most handled area of the cloth, an area that should have been avoided. The sample may have been part of a section that was repaired sometime during the Middle Ages. Many scientists now believe that carbon dating result is inconclusive and should be no longer considered valid.

Adding more doubt to the carbon dating test, new chemical and mechanical tests published in 2013 by Italian scientists with Padua University indicate a date range of 280 B.C. to 220 A.D.

The mystery continues. National Geographic called it “One of the most perplexing enigmas of modern times.” Shroud Encounter will cover all aspects of the history, science, art and theories of how the image may have been formed.