Shroud of Turin: Could It Be Real?

    February 13, 2014
    Val Powell

The Shroud of Turin’s authenticity has been the focus of debates for decades. The piece of cloth that shows the imprint of a man’s face is believed to be the sheet that covered Jesus’ body after he was crucified in 33 A.D. The Catholic Church does not have an official statement regarding the authenticity of the fabric, but thousands of Catholics visit Turin Cathedral in Italy each year just to get a glimpse of the Shroud of Turin. Through the years, the question still remains: Is the Shroud of Turin real, or fake?

In 1988, radiocarbon dating was done by Oxford University. The conclusion was that the shroud was only 728 years old.

A group of research scientists from Italy led by Professor Alberto Carpinteri suggests that a magnitude 8.2 earthquake that happened in Jerusalem in 33 A.D. may have caused the imprint on the cloth. The earthquake may have also affected the radiocarbon dating results released by Oxford University.

According to the research team, the strong earthquake was powerful enough to discharge neutrons. The neutron emissions then formed the image on the shroud upon interacting with the nitrogen atoms on the cloth’s fibers. The theory has been published in the Meccanica journal.

Oxford Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit Director Christopher Ramsey has an issue regarding the new findings. The question he raises is why other geological and archaeological materials were not as intensely affected by the earthquake as the Shroud of Turin.

Mark Antonacci, the President of the Resurrection of the Shroud Foundation, is requesting the Pope to permit molecular analysis of the linen with the use of the latest technology. With this analysis, the radiation theory may be confirmed or ruled out.

This recent finding may have cleared questions about the Shroud of Turin for some people. However, it has also added another possible angle, and may even cause more confusion for others.

Video reveals new evidence validating Shroud of Turin

Image via YouTube