The Shroud of Turin: What's Your Opinion?


You are entitled to feel that way but while others have been putting forward substantial discussion points you have simply come up with one liners and no evidence. Watching a video doesn’t make you an expert.


Not, as far as I know, that being called a Baha’i when one isn’t constitutes abuse, I suppose. I’m sure they’re all very nice people. I’m just not one of them.

Just to be clear then, what faith, if any, are you?


As I boldly announced in post #263 of this thread: “I’m happy to announced that I’m a full-blooded card-carrying church-going practising Roman Catholic, and have been so since my baptism aged about a week. Also that no shred of my views on the Shroud has any impact on my faith. I sincerely hope that no posters on this site will have their faith weakened when the Shroud is more conclusively demonstrated to be medieval than it is. That, I’m afraid, would only show that they didn’t really have much in the first place.”


Thanks for the clear reply Mr Farey. I, like many others here, share the same faith, it should make dialogue easier!

Please may I ask you, as the foremost non-authenticist poster on this thread, what is your primary motivation for the voluminous and detailed posts?


Science is dumbfounded though. They cannot say what the image is made of. There is real human blood on it. The date testing was from a repaired area! Even faint Roman coin impressions can be seen on the eyes!


One can talk all one wants but in reality the shroud is a miracle of Jesus.

Can those that doubt the shroud please explain how Jesus was able to perform miracles?


Good question. I think I have a greater and a lesser purpose. The lesser is to try to attract attention to the fact that there has been a lot of 21st century research into the Shroud, which it is a shame that so few people are aware of. The greater is a more general campaign against the woolly thinking, selective use of evidence and occasional deliberate misrepresentation of religious fundamentalists generally. There seems to be a general decline in Christian religious adherence, which the increasingly rational stance of the Church is doing its best to maintain, but there is a powerful body of irrationalists who, rather than attract people, actually deter them. I do not believe this is because of their faith as such, but because of the irrational way they occasionally bolster it with pseudo-science.

By all means let people believe in the authenticity of the Shroud. By all means let them honestly explain why. If there is truth in what they say, it will come out eventually. But by coming across as mean-spirited in attitude and misrepresentative in evidence, their attempt to ‘speak to all nations’ will prove thoroughly counter-productive. I think that my steady presentation of easily confirmed evidence, and logically presented conclusions from that evidence, coupled to my unswerving faith in the Church, will do a lot more to win people to it than intemperate blustering.


So you have said. Many times. But it isn’t true, is it? Why go on and on repeating the same falsehood over and over again? What good will it do?

The Scientists who examined the Shroud in 1978 claimed they knew exactly what it was made of: “The image was produced by a dehydrative oxidative process of the cellulose structure of the linen to yield a conjugated carbonyl group as the chromophore.”

True. Probably.

False. Certainly. You really ought to keep up with current research rather than rely on the findings of last century.

Have you any idea of the evidence for and against this hypothesis, or are you just quoting blindly from something you vaguely remember seeing once?


Why? It has no bearing whatever on a medieval artwork.


You are closing your eyes to the truth.


Thank you Mr Farey. So if I read your comments correctly, you believe your main priority in posting so many detailed posts about the Shroud on a Catholic forum is evangelising to gain more Christians/Catholics by demolishing the single most recognisable and most important Christian/Catholic relic in the world?

This does seem illogical. The vast majority of people coming to are already Catholic, not atheists or even Christians of other denominations. I have a number of questions from your comment:

Please can you explain how this evangelisation is likely to occur?
Do you think your posts are strengthening the faith of the existing Catholics reading this thread?

This is important:

When pressed to give his judgment on the shroud’s authenticity, Pope Benedict never went further than to affirm that it could prove a strengthening of faith among those who already believe. It is, he said, “an image which reminds us always of Christ’s suffering”.


Well I doubt the shroud and my answer would be he didn’t perform any miracles. What’s your point?


More meaningless one liners! Nothing to support your opinion!


I’m not entirely convinced of the objective accuracy of your assertion regarding Catholic vs. Non-Catholic visitors to the site. Remember that visiting does not require an account; I personally lurked for several weeks before opening mine. Also, I would consider it more relevant to the specific issue in this post whether there are a larger or smaller percentage of Catholic viewers of this thread rather than the site as a whole.

I cannot speak to the question about strengthening the faith of existing Catholics as I am not presently Catholic. This fact, however, does relate to your question about evangelization. I am researching and trying to determine whether to become Catholic and it is, to me, a positive thing that devout Catholics can also be scientists who can and do follow the evidence where it leads, and reject the idea that belief trumps honest science.


Why would you be sad over that if it was the truth??? You would be a hero…


Because people need Hope and I stole it from them… :disappointed:


It is an object of faith. If it is proved, then no faith is required. I think that would be a shame.


The Shroud is a wonder. It has baffled the world, science.

Imagine, we cannot replicate it in this modern age! An age full of technological wonders! Yet, its a primitive cloth with an image on it that was produced in a way that science cannot understand!

In reality, it is easy to see how it was produced! It was made by a miracle. It was made by Our Lord. Left for US! There is no other explanation. It all points to Jesus.

To those who say nay. How was it produced? Yes, you can guess, but, its only a ‘guess’. I believe it is of Jesus. For me, the evidence is staring me in the face, plus, my faith tells me it is of Jesus!

Science can only explain so much. And even then, it has fallen short on the shroud.


“Please can you explain how this evangelisation is likely to occur?”

I think the most important thing is the question of whether or not the Shroud is genuine. You seem to be implying that, if it isn’t genuine, it should still be talked about as if it were, or the critics should at least be hushed, so that more people could come to the Faith through it? That doesn’t seem to be the way a Christian ought to act. We’re supposed to live in truth.

I have seen many Christians, especially if they’re of the kind who aren’t interested in miracle claims, a bit put off by the unquestioning approach some Christians have towards those things. Typically former protestants where the articles of Faith, the Church Fathers and the question of tradition weigh much more heavily.

I came from a tradition like that as well. On a small Catholic Facebook group, with many members who came from a high church lutheran background we had a discussion, and many of them expressed feeling a bit ostracized for questioning the shroud.

Criticisms of the Shroud weren’t welcome, and their faith was quickly questioned by those who were convinced that the Shroud was genuine.

“Do you think your posts are strengthening the faith of the existing Catholics reading this thread?”

Strengthening their Faith?

If some people have made the Shroud the source and summit of their Faith, the foundation, so that if the Shroud was proven beyond all reasonable doubt to be the works of a person, and this therefore seriously shook their faith in the Church… you’ll have to wonder how much faith they had to begin with.

The Eucharist, Christ’s Sacrifice on the Cross, The Mystery of Reconsiliation, that’s the source and summit of our Faith.

As such I do agree that the Church has chosen to sit between two chairs when it comes to the Shroud. They won’t let scientists investigate it any further other than the few sticky tape samples, and three weeks of investigation they got. And they call it an icon. The prudence of that decision is above my pay grade to question.

I do lean strongly however towards the shroud being not being a relic. And I believe I should be allowed to state why I think so.

Its not like Hugh Farey’s and my posts are the majority. There’s over a dozen threads on the shroud on this site and all of them are mostly full of shroud enthusiasts.


I would be surprised if the majority of visitors to CAF turn out to be non-Christians, but happy to concede if it is the case. This should be easily answered by the sites admins who should have that data.

Mr Farey can speak for himself of course.

I would like to make the point that science and Christianity are entirely compatible, many scientists can be used as examples. Issac Newton, George Lemaitre etc etc. Indeed I would go very much further and state that science as we understand it today was only possible because of the Christian belief and understanding in an ordered created universe. Many threads on CAF discuss this and answer the point around science and the RCC. I would also state that science on its own is insufficient for Man, the “what” needs the “why” before it becomes sufficient.

However, given the topic here, the real point is that the Turin Shroud is first and foremost an object of faith and devotion, i.e. a religious, specifically Christian object. Approaching the Shroud without any faith cannot bring the most important answers that can come from it, namely a belief in Jesus Christ. Using purely science to examine the Shroud as one would any other object eg the Bayeux tapestry, is the same logical fallacy, the “what” without the “why”.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit