Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Shroud of Turin Interview

All right, so tomorrow I'm hoping to talk to Barrie Schwortz from the Shroud of Turin website. Barrie has worked on official investigations of the Shroud with many prestigious groups, including members of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He has been investigating the Shroud since 1978.

Barrie (he insists I call him by his first name) is Jewish, so when he was asked to work on the Shroud he felt a little uneasy about being part of a "Christian" project. But a friend of his encouraged him to go for it and do the best he could do. So he did, and though he is still Jewish, he now believes that the weight of the evidence points to the Shroud being the genuine burial cloth of Christ.

Barrie was kind enough to agree to an interview, so I hope to talk to him tomorrow at three. I have a lot of questions to ask about the authenticity of the Shroud, so I am looking forward to it.

Here are the questions I am planning on asking thus far.

What is the Shroud supposed to be?

When was the Shroud of Turin discovered? Why is it called the Shroud of Turin, and where has it been over its lifetime?

How did you get involved in the Shroud research?

When did you work on the Shroud? Who was involved in the investigation?

How do you think the image was imprinted onto the Shroud?

Why do you think the Shroud is authentic? I mean, it sounds like something out of an Indiana Jones film! Couldn't it just be a medieval hoax or a modern gimmick? Couldn't the man on the Shroud be someone other than Jesus?

Do you know anything about Luigi Garlaschelli, the Italian scientist who reportedly recreated the Shroud of Turin to show that it is a fake? He apparently wrapped one of his students in cloth, covered the cloth with pigment, baked it in an oven, and then washed it. He basically used materials that would be available during medieval times, so he has decided that it was a gimmick created by middle age artisans. In medieval times especially, fake “Christian” relics were very common.

What about radiocarbon dating done on the cloth? It reveals that the cloth is from the 13th or 14th century, not from the time of Christ, right?

In your estimate, do you think the Shroud lends evidence to Christianity? Has your view of Christianity changed since your investigation on the Shroud?

If you have any questions of your own you would like to ask Barrie Schwortz about the Shroud, let me know. I'm trying to get a good feel for the facts surrounding the Shroud with my questions.

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