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Shroud of Turin

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March 31 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — The Shroud of Turin will be exposed for live veneration on Holy Saturday, April 3, the Turin archdiocese announced.

The special event will include livestreamed Mass with the Shroud in the Turin Cathedral at 4:30 p.m. local time (10:30 a.m. EST), followed by veneration at 5 p.m. Viewers can take part in the event via broadcasts by EWTN and on social media

“In these troubled times we need to nurture and communicate our hope. And for us believers the most effective way to increase the hope of the whole world is through common prayer, by kneeling before the Lord,” Msgr. Cesare Nosiglia, Archbishop of Turin, said.

“For this reason we celebrate, also on Holy Saturday, the day of silence before the tomb of the Lord but also of the expectation of His Resurrection, a special liturgy in front of the Shroud that reminds us of this event, the living center of our faith and our hope,” he added.

The Shroud of Turin is widely recognized within the Church as the actual linen cloth in which Jesus Christ was buried after the Crucifixion. Experts have attested that the Shroud depicts “absolutely realistic” blood stains from wounds that match those of the crucified Christ and have debunked claims that the cloth originated in medieval times.

Public exposition of the delicate relic is increasingly rare, having occurred only four times since 2000. The upcoming exposition will be the second time in the last two years that the archdiocese will have displayed the Shroud for live veneration on Holy Saturday. 

“The prayer in front of the Shroud in this 2021 is not a simple repetition of the one celebrated in 2020,” however, the archbishop said. He noted that the “we are more aware of the difficulties we face and the commitments we can make” than at the outset of the COVID-19 crisis.

“The Shroud image, which Turin has kept for almost five centuries, testifies to pain and death but also — and with what greater force! — resurrection and eternal life,” Nosiglia continued. “Before the Shroud we can truly exclaim once again, with our hearts turned to the Lord: ‘your love is forever.’”