Turin Shroud: American Scientist Claims Cardinal Dolan Suppressing The Truth…

david roemerScience and the Catholic Church
by David K. Roemer Ph.D

The purpose of [my] blog is to record the Vatican’s response to the complaint I filed on October 1, 2014, against the Archbishop of the Diocese of New York for suppressing my slideshow/lecture about the Shroud of Turin. On March 30, 2011, a pastor in New York City cancelled my scheduled slideshow on the grounds that I was not promoting the authenticity of the Holy Shroud. Cardinal Dolan supported the pastor’s decision. The Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization suggested that I bring the matter to the attention of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. The canonical complaint and all the correspondence leading to it is on my blog titled New Evangelist, David Roemer. Appendix III of the complaint is a reproduction of the complaint I filed with the Ethics and Member Conduct Committee of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers against Bruno Barberis, et. al., for rejecting “Science, Metaphysics, Philosophy, Theology, History, and the Holy Shroud” which I submitted to a conference about the Shroud of Turin sponsored by the IEEE. Dr. Barberis is an advisor to Archbishop Cesare Nosiglia, who is the Custodian of the Shroud of Turin. In my complaint, I argue that my paper was rejected because it explained why the Shroud of Turin was not authentic. Appendix IV is an book review titled “Cognitive Dissonance and the Shroud of Turin.” Letter to Holy Father (December 2, 2014) Letter to New York Province of the Society of Jesus (November 24, 2014) Letter to President of the Italian Episcopal Conference (November 20, 2014) Letter to Roman Rota (November 19, 2014)  TurinShroud



Since I’m no expert on science, full stop, and since I’m not scholarly enough to hold a scientific view on the authenticity or otherwise of the shroud, I’ll be interested to read what others say on this topic.  We’re not afraid of the truth here… if the evidence shows that the shroud is not authentic, it makes no difference whatsoever to our Faith. So, why would Cardinal Dolan suppress information which may cast light on the subject, one way or the other?  Whatever happened to “dialogue”?

116 responses

  1. I am not in the least surprised that Cardinal Dolan and other senior Catholics have given this guy short shrift, he’s a rationalist presenting nothing more or less than scientific theory intertwined with a confused interpretation of historical records relating to the shroud. There is nothing new under the sun here.

    He says that Catholics get “anxious” when their pious belief in the shroud of Turin is questioned. In fact, it is he who is anxious, almost frantic, in the correspondence he writes and escalates to ever higher authorities in the Church. He just cannot accept that no one is interested in another groundless claim that the shroud is a fake that science just happens to be unable to replicate.

    In fine, the man is desperate to disprove the supernatural origin of the shroud even though the balance of proof leans heavily in the direction of authenticity. But even if this were not the case, why would he be so intent on destroying the pious belief of so many Catholics? What is this man really all about? Is he just an honest scientist seeking to establish the truth? If he were then he would admit that what he proposes amounts to personal conjecture, not scientific evidence.

  2. Having read some other correspondence on this guy’s blog I have concluded that he should not be taken seriously. None of those he writes to seem to take him seriously and I can understand why.

  3. I don’t know much about science myself but I do wonder about the wisdom of the Cardinal not allowing a scientist to put his case. He could always have stipulated that some other scientist who supports authenticity should be there as well, but it looks like “scaredy cat” to suppress the information.

    I tried to find out whether David Roemer is a Catholic or not but it doesn’t say so on his website, or if it does, I can’t find it, although maybe “New Evangelisation” is a clue. Does anyone know for sure if he’s a Catholic?

    • Nicky,

      Dr Roemer finishes his letter to the Pope with the words
      “Humbly yours in Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, David Roemer” so I think he must be a Catholic

      I’m not very knowledgeable either about the shroud but I do notice that when there are reports that it’s a fake, something always follows on to rebut that. It really doesn’t bother me one way or the other, since it doesn’t affect the faith at all, as it says in the blue editorial comment.

  4. We already have had an examination of the cloth in Britain in the 80`s followed closely by the mainstream press and TV. The head of the British Museum led a team at Oxford and taking a sample from a part of the cloth which had been mended he announced it was 14th century. He made no observation whatsoever of how in the 14th Century someone was able to copy a negative image when knowledge of what negatives were only came about in the invention of photograph in he 20th century. But life in the Church went on as usual. since the Catholic Faith does not depend on signs and wonders. If the man has anything sensible to say about negative images of course we should listen, but I suspect not.

    • John Kearney

      If you read other things on David Roemer’s blog you’ll discover that he appears to be Christian but is actually a rationalist. Besides that, his arguments are completely bogus. I think he enjoys being controversial. I wouldn’t waste further time discussing him.

  5. If you read Appendix II of my complaint against Cardinal Dolan, you will see that two atheists have written books arguing that the Holy Shroud is authentic and using this theory to give an historical explanation for the Resurrection of Jesus.

    Another fanatical atheist is Jerry Coyne, who has a blog called “Why Evolution is True.” In February 20, 2014, he argued that Christianity is irrational because Christians think the Shroud is authentic. He thinks the carbon-14 dating fiasco proves the Shroud is a fake. I have other arguments.

    I discussed the authenticity of the Holy Shroud on the pages of the website of the St. Louis conference on the Shroud of Turin with Yannick Clement. He has written a number of articles arguing that the Shroud is authentic. I got the last word, because he did not answer my last post. This is exactly what Cardinal Dolan did. He criticized my slideshow but did not let me explain things to him or in person. In my last post to Yannick, I summed up the nature of our conflict: I think there is no evidence the Shroud is authentic and Yannick thinks there is a lot of evidence. I understand the difference between the Resurrection of Jesus as an historical event and as an act of faith, but Yannick does not.

    • David,

      You appear to think that the Resurrection of Christ was not an historical event. That is how I’m interpreting your comment, so please correct me if I’ve misunderstood. I sincerely hope I’ve misunderstood because it is a grave heresy to refuse to believe in the physical Resurrection of Our Lord. Click here to read a concise commentary on the subject from Pope John Paul II. The contrived distinction between the Resurrection as an historical event, and as an act or expression of faith, makes no sense because, as St Paul teaches, if there were no resurrection from the dead, then there IS no Christian faith!

  6. The Resurrection of Jesus is both an historical event and an object of faith. As an object of faith, it refers to the belief that Jesus is alive in a new life with God and if we follow Jesus the same good thing can happen to us. We are not guaranteed salvation, but we can hope for it with “fear and trembling.” All historians agree that the followers of Jesus disbanded in fear and disappointment after the crucifixion, but renewed their fellowship within a few years and swore up and down that Jesus appeared to them. They had a religious experience. The Resurrection of Jesus as an historical event is just one of many reasons I believe in Jesus. Another reason is the Shroud of Turin. It is quite a coincidence that Gnostics figured out some way to create this image of the only person to rise from the dead. Another reason is that practically all atheists, agnostics, and liberal Christians are ignorant, stupid, irrational, and dishonest about the existence of God. If you think the Shroud is authentic, you should keep it to yourself.

  7. I have read some of the correspondence posted on this scientist’s blog, and I cannot understand his urgency in wanting to prove the shroud to be a fake. Our belief in the resurrection of Our Lord does not rest on the authenticity of the shroud; it makes not one whit of difference to the Faith whether the shroud is authentic or not, so I fail to see why the man is so insistent on being heard.

    I also don’t see how giving him a platform to share his speculations would have done anybody any good. His presentation may have been interesting but nothing more.

    • The title of my slideshow is “The Shroud of Turin: The Truth.” There is nothing speculative about it. My slideshow increases the number of reasons there are to believe in Jesus.

      • David Roemer

        Is that the Jesus of Sacred Scripture, the Son of God made man who died on the Cross for our salvation and then physically rose again from the dead on the third day and, after forty days, ascended to His Father in Heaven, or is it the Jesus of John Dominic Crossan, Bart Erhman and Raymond Brown, the Jesus who is not really God?

        We’ll start with that question and work from there to discover what it is you’re trying to tell us about the Resurrection and the shroud of Turin.

      • David Roemer,

        I have watched TV specials on the shroud and was fascinated by how much scientists seemed to have gathered just from the burial cloth! I would be just as interested to see why you believe the shroud is a fake.

        I am also curious as to why you think if we believe the shroud is authentic it should be kept to ourselves.

  8. David Roemer

    You appear to be distinguishing between Jesus as an object of history and Jesus as an object of Faith, as though the two differed from each other. This is a manifest error. There is no difference between the Christ of history and the Christ of Faith.

    Here are two propositions that seem similar to what you are saying – both are condemned by St. Pius X in the Syllabus of Errors attached to his Encyclical Lamentabili Sani

    #36 “The Resurrection of the Saviour is not properly a fact of the historical order. It is a fact of merely the supernatural order (neither demonstrated nor demonstrable) which the conscience gradually derived from other facts.”

    #37 “In the beginning, faith in the Resurrection of Christ was not so much in the fact itself of the Resurrection as in the immortal life of Christ with God.”

    It is also contrary to the Gospel texts to suggest that the “followers of Jesus”, by which I assume you mean the Apostles, were disbanded for years before coming together again. The Biblical (historical) account of events is clear that they were together again in the Cenacle when the holy women came to announce Our Lord’s Resurrection on the first Easter Sunday, the third day from the Crucifixion. They remained together in that place until the Holy Ghost descended upon them on the first Pentecost Sunday. There is no contrary historical record of these events, so your ‘years apart’ theory is spurious.

    Hence, this statement of yours demands explanation: “All historians agree that the followers of Jesus disbanded in fear and disappointment after the crucifixion, but renewed their fellowship within a few years and swore up and down that Jesus appeared to them.” Name all these historians, please.

    You also err greatly by these words “As an object of faith, it refers to the belief that Jesus is alive in a new life with God…”

    But Jesus is God! He is the Second Person of the Most Blessed Trinity. How, then, does He come to enter into a new life with Himself? This is not Christian doctrine you preach, it’s rationalist Modernism.

    Now, as regards the shroud of Turin, you say: “It is quite a coincidence that Gnostics figured out some way to create this image of the only person to rise from the dead.”

    How do you know that Gnostics figured out a way to create the image when its origin and compilation baffles even our modern advanced scientific methods. Surely, you are stating as fact a proposition that is no more factual than the claims of others that the shroud is a medieval fake?

    If the shroud was of human manufacture then we may be certain that forensic science would have proved the case a long time ago. Since it has failed to do so, rather declaring by forensic testing that the blood on the shroud is that of a crucified man from about two thousand years ago, we are obliged to lean towards authenticity. This being so, why should people keep it to themselves? You certainly don’t keep to yourself your belief that it’s a fake!

    One final question, if I may. Are you a Catholic? Something tells me you’re not, or at least not in the Traditional sense of the word. I don’t understand your apparent questioning of the evidence around the Resurrection and the shroud while at the same time claiming to be a Christian precisely because of your belief in them. I’m confused by your contradictions.

  9. 1) The historical Christ is what Jesus actually said and did and what historians at major universities say about the Resurrection. John Dominic Crossan, an atheist, said that the Resurrection could be traced back to within a few years of the crucifixion. An historian who thinks it can be traced back to Easter Sunday is in agreement with this, in a sense.

    2) The Christ of Faith is in a new life with God, and if we follow Jesus the same good thing can happen to us. The doctrine of the Trinity is just doctrine and is of secondary importance, according to Thomas Aquinas.

    3) Robert Drews gives a lot of evidence that Gnostics did it using a crucified victim. The methods they used have been lost to history. It is a work of craftsmanship because the blood stains are not smeared, and the image is detailed. It is a true image with shading, not an outline. Also, the shape of the cloth indicates it was created to make such an image. The fact that we can’t figure out how they did it is a sign from God and a reason to believe in Jesus. By conflating the Resurrection and the Shroud you are diminishing the reasons to believe and causing people to think Christians are irrational.

    4) I see a very strong analogy between the Big Bang and the Shroud of Turin. They are both scientific reasons to believe the Bible is the Word of God. The Big Bang, however, is not evidence that God exists. It is evidence that God does not exist because it is evidence that the universe is unintelligible. According to science, we don’t know what caused the Big Bang. Also, according to science, we know that Shroud was a work of human ingenuity. Canon Law 279 section 1 is against pseudoscience.

    • David Roemer

      With respect, you certainly have a talent for making your beliefs perfectly obscure.

      Putting aside for the moment the false statement you attribute to St. Thomas Aquinas, and putting aside arguments about the shroud of Turin and the Big Bang. Would you be good enough to answer in a precise manner whether or not you believe in the historical bodily Resurrection and Ascension into heaven of Jesus Christ, the Son of God made man, who died for our Redemption on the Cross on Calvary?

      • I believe in the Apostle’s creed and the resurrection of the body. God gives us a body so we can communicate with our fellow humans, and salvation would be meaningless if if was not based on our human experiences. The “historical bodily Resurrection” of Jesus sounds to me like saying if St. Paul had a video camera he could have taped Jesus’ appearances. If you are walking down the street and see you aunt who has been dead for 4 years, you are not going to say, “Wow, she rose from the dead.” The Resurrection of Jesus was a religious experience.

        • David Roemer,

          “The Resurrection of Jesus was a religious experience.”

          In other words, a figment of the imagination in his emotional disciples? That’s what your “religious experience” explanation comes down to in the final analysis.

          You will find this heresy amply refuted and condemned by Pope St. Pius X in his Encyclical against the Modernists Pascendi Dominici Gregis

          In the meantime, I suggest that since you are clearly not Catholic, and indeed not even Christian in your beliefs, it would be best if we terminate this exchange forthwith. Otherwise, we will all end up going around in circles.

          I will pray for you that God may deliver you from the blindness of rationalism through the gift of true supernatural faith.

  10. David Roemer

    “By conflating the Resurrection and the Shroud you are diminishing the reasons to believe and causing people to think Christians are irrational.”

    What do you mean by conflating the Resurrection? Are you saying that only a rationalist interpretation of the Resurrection is acceptable, which equates to no Resurrection in fact?

  11. There are two kinds of knowledge: faith and reason. In reason, we know something is true because we can see the truth of it. In faith, we know something is true because God is telling us. Faith is both a decision and a gift from God.The response in faith to the Resurrection of Jesus as an historical fact is to believe Jesus is alive in a new life with God.

    • David Roemer

      Thank you! I’ll take that as confirmation that you reject the bodily Resurrection and Ascension into heaven of Jesus Christ, the Son of God made man.

  12. In your letter to Joesph Kalasky, dated July 29, 2014, you state: “Religion inhibits people from thinking rationally and intelligently.”

    That quotation alone raises the serious question of exactly what you mean when you use the title ‘New Evangelist’.

    From what I have read in your letters and reports to various dignitaries and organisations, not to mention our exchanges here, I have to declare in all honesty that I can well understand why every Catholic from that parish priest in New York through Cardinal Dolan and those Vatican prelates, as well as other official bodies, have rejected your thesis out of hand.

    I say in all charity to you that you appear to me, and I am sure to the aforementioned also, to be a very confused and confusing individual, possibly a Gnostic but definitely not Traditionally Christian in your beliefs and arguments. Others have clearly spotted this and that’s why your sideshow is unanimously rejected.

    • What exactly is it you don’t approve of in my slideshow on the internet (www.holyshroud.info)? I’v asked Cardinal Bagnasco, President of the Italian Episcopal Conference, to include it in its archive. I also asked him if he had any criticisms of it. So far I haven’t gotten an answer, except from a Jesuit retreat house in New Jersey. They said as long as Cardinal Dolan was against my slideshow, they were against it. Is Cardinal Dolan your authority too?

  13. David Roemer

    Your slideshow is of no real interest to me, as my faith in the bodily Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ is not dependent upon the authenticity or otherwise of the shroud of Turin.

    I was much more interested in where you were coming from with your arguments. I now have the information I sought, which is that you are a rationalist and not a Christian. Your faith is what you can prove by reason, not what has been divinely revealed by God in Sacred Scripture. In other words, you have a purely human faith, not a supernatural one. I pray that God delivers you from such pitiful intellectual blindness.

  14. I’m really out of my depth in discussing the science of the Turin Shroud but I Googled to see if anyone had challenged David Roemer’s findings and I found this blog discussion

    It is an interesting blog because it says there is really not much about the shroud itself in David Roemer’s talk/slideshow.

    BTW, I’m still not sure that he is a Catholic. Sounds more like an evangelical Christian to me.

    • Fidelis

      Thanks for the link to that blog, I read the comments right through. It’s true! There really is very little about the Turin shroud in David Roemer’s presentations. His is more an exercise in trying to impress his peers with long-winded propositions based on pseudo-science than an attempt to discover truth. I would rather he spent his time trying to impress God with a lively and childlike faith, it’s much more rewarding both in time and eternity!

      With that hope in mind, I thought I might copy this passage from the Gospels for him to ponder:

      “Now when it was late that same day, the first of the week, and the doors were shut, where the disciples were gathered together, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them: Peace be to you. And when he had said this, he shewed them his hands and his side. The disciples therefore were glad, when they saw the Lord. He said therefore to them again: Peace be to you. As the Father hath sent me, I also send you. When he had said this, he breathed on them; and he said to them: Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them; and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained.

      Now Thomas, one of the twelve, who is called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said to him: We have seen the Lord. But he said to them: Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the place of the nails, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.

      And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them. Jesus cometh, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said: Peace be to you. Then he saith to Thomas: Put in thy finger hither, and see my hands; and bring hither thy hand, and put it into my side; and be not faithless, but believing. Thomas answered, and said to him: My Lord, and my God. Jesus saith to him: Because thou hast seen me, Thomas, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and have believed.”

      More than a “religious experience” for St. Thomas here, eh David? This is historically recorded testimony of the physical bodily Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

      Unless, of course, you are “faithless” as Our Lord put it, refusing to believe what you cannot personally see, in which case you’ll preach the deceptive misnomer that “Jesus is alive in a new life with God,” which is just a clever way of declaring that Jesus is not God and did not physically rise from the dead!

  15. Fidelis and Athanasius: My metaphysics teacher in 1963 was Norris Clarke, SJ. I remember him saying that Thomas Aquinas said faith in Jesus is more important than doctrines. It is more important to believe that Jesus is alive than to believe in the Holy Spirit. I believe Jesus founded the Catholic Church, so I am a Catholic and believe and proclaim the Apostle’s Creed. I am trying to convert so-called Christians who do not believe in life after death. Evangelical Christians believe in the Apostle’s creed, except for the part about the Catholic Church. If Pope Francis does not correct Cardinal Dolan, I may have to start my own religion.

    • Mr Roemer

      “If Pope Francis does not correct Cardinal Dolan, I may have to start my own religion.”

      I think you already have.

    • David Roemer

      If you were taught by a modern Jesuit then that explains why you are now void of all supernatural faith. It’s a common tragedy with intellectuals. And in case you hadn’t noticed, you’ve already started your own religion.

      By the way, that Jesuit lied to you about St. Thomas Aquinas taught!

  16. I watched the slideshow. I did not find there to be much detail. The argument seems to amount to that there were a group of gnostics who had access to some lost knowledge (therefore impossible to prove).

    I would like to know how these gnostics knew to put coins (widow’s mite) on the eyes of Jesus. Not only that but the spelling of Ceasar on the coins had a spelling mistake (very rare). How would they have known this ?

    from: (https://www.shroud.com/lombatti.htm)
    “Lombatti states that the Tiberius coins always have the name spelled “TIBEPIOY” with the final Y and not U and that the title is always spelled with a K as in KAICAPOC. The silver coinage in Palestine was the denarius, which was struck in Roman mints, and the copper currency was a mixture of Roman and Greco-Roman coins. On the Roman coins, Latin was used and the ruler=92s title was spelled CAESAR. Much of the copper coinage was struck locally and was of rather poor quality. The local die cutters made frequent misspellings on the coins, and a rather logical misspelling would be to substitute the C for the K. This misspelling was never recorded, however, and its existence was first suggested by the letters seen on the Shroud. Remarkably, Father Filas was given a lepton which happened to have this misspelling on it. When people finally realized that the coin actually did show a C, they began looking for it on other lepton coins and found it occasionally. I know of at least six coins that have the C spelling on them, and I have photographs of three of them in which the letter is unequivocally a C and not a ruined K as suggested. Several numismatists have examined the Filas coin, and I have photographed it in great detail. I was privileged to have first correctly dated that coin by identifying the Greek letters on the back indicating that it was struck in the 16th year of the reign of Tiberius, or AD 29. On examining the Filas lepton and the image on the Shroud, it is apparent that the letter at the end of the abbreviation for Tiberius is indeed the Greek letter Upsilon, which looks like a U with a small tail on it. There are differences in which letters are used for transliteration of the Greek letters; some use IOY and others IOU for the same inscription.”

    That’s only one argument, there are others.

    – pollen grains
    – The image is a 3 dimension image (discovered using NASA equipment)
    – The image is inverted (the inverted image is much more impressive). It seems a strange marketing strategy that has to wait 1700 years to be effective.

    • Cbucket

      Very well put, but I fear David Roemer will be unable to bow before those facts. You see, his thesis is not really about the Turin shroud. It’s about David Roemer, the ‘New Evangelist’.

    • All of those facts are perfectly consistent with the theory that Gnostics created the Shroud in the 1st or 2nd century using a crucified victim and methods that have been lost to history. This theory explains why the image is so detailed and the blood marks are not smeared.

      Your mistake, I suggest, is that you are confusing the concept of the “resurrection of the body” in the Apostle’s creed with the “bodily Resurrection of Jesus.” The first phrase is a noun phrase and makes perfect sense. This is what I believe. The second phrase is a noun phrase modified with the adjective “bodily.” The second phrase makes no sense to me at all. What on earth does “bodily” mean? I explain this in more detail at http://ezinearticles.com/?Cognitive-Dissonance-and-the-Shroud-of-Turin&id=8716559.

      • David Roemer,

        With respect, I think you are splitting hairs about “bodily resurrection.” In the Scriptures we read that after the Resurrection, Jesus appeared to his disciples and “he shewed them his hands and his side.” That is, his body.

        I’ve never heard any of this questioning the resurrection until fairly recently. St Paul tells us that Christ rose from the dead – we have to take him at his word and not speculate that he meant something else, especially when we have eye witness accounts to support what he said.

        • My goal is to explain to atheists, agnostics, and liberal Christians the reasons to believe Christ rose from the dead. What prevents these people from believing is that they don’t understand why God exists. It is not because they are bad at history. The first step in explaining why God exists is explaining why humans are embodied spirits. To do this, you have to “split hairs.” You also have to tell the truth about history and science.

      • David Roemer

        You’re right about the Gnostic idea being a “theory”. It just happens to be a false theory that has NO FACTS to back it up, just your say so, but at least you admit that it’s only a theory. On that note, the only thing that has been lost in history is the faith of another Catholic!

        As for your ideas on the Resurrection. Well, let’s just say they won’t be getting you into heaven. I’ll stick with the 2000-year teaching of the Catholic Church on that one and leave you to your contrary ‘enlightenment’.

      • CBUCKET: Suppose we are on a jury evaluating a lot of evidence and testimony. If you say guilty and I say innocent we have different judgments about the evidence. It is a matter of opinion. One of us has better judgment than the other. But if you say Exhibit A is evidence of guilt and I say it is evidence of innocence, then we have a conflict. One of us is more knowledgable, more intelligent, or more honest than the other.

        • David Roemer

          It also means that one is more wrong than the other. In the case in hand, it is you who are wrong. You’re trying desperately to push a wild theory as historical fact and causing great conflict in the process, the very negative effect you say you’re trying to circumvent. Trust me when I say that you are no towering intellectual. Consent then to more humble pursuits and put your mind at ease.

          • What is it on my slideshow “The Shroud of Turin: The Truth” that is not true? I believe that the Catholic Church is infallible, but Cardinals are not. The slideshow is at
            http://www.holyshroud.info. If there are any errors in it, Cardinal Dolan was right to not encourage its viewing and the Cardinal Bagnasco is right if he does not include it in the archives of the Italian Episcopal Conference.

  17. That’s why we have the authority, which Christ gave to St Peter and his successors, to pass on the Truth. Your judgement is irrelevant compared to the traditional judgement and teaching of the Church. As a Catholic, you must understand and accept accept this.

    • I agree that there is no salvation outside of the Catholic Church. However, everyone posting here thinks there is a lot of evidence that the Holy Shroud is authentic. I don’t think there is any evidence for this. This is a conflict, not a disagreement. The conflict involves knowledge, understanding, and integrity. It does not involve rationality, that is, deciding whether a theory is true or just probable.

      • David Roemer

        The debate switched very quickly from the Turin shroud when you denied the Church’s infallible teaching (Divine Revelation) on the bodily Resurrection of Our Lord. That places you outside the Church as a doctrinal dissenter, a heretic. If you persist in that tragic state you will lose your soul. Compared with that horrible prospect, debate about the Turin shroud is child’s play.

      • David,

        I said at the outset that I’m not knowledgeable or scholarly enough to make any kind of scientific judgment on the Shroud. I know, however, that it is a matter of only secondary (if that) importance, as it does not touch on the Faith or Morals.

        I’m very interested in it, of course, and if turns out to be authentic, I’d willingly make a pilgrimage to see/touch it, if permitted. But I’m not going to lose any sleep over it one way or the other, so I am a little puzzled at your strength of feeling about it.

        Takes me all my time to put together a letter to the Pope about the catastrophic state of the Church – caused by him, to a great extent – which I did not that long ago and still haven’t received as much as an acknowledgment let alone one of his pally phone calls. I should have asked if I could cohabit with my next door neighbour and still receive Communion, that would have gotten me into his good books.* Darn. Wish I’d thought of it at the time. Anyway, as I started to say, takes me all my time to write to the Pope about the horrendous state of the Church, never mind conduct what amounts to a campaign to grab his attention on something which is not of primary importance.

        Anyway, I’m much more concerned that the Shroud is not used by any Catholic scientist to cast doubt on the physical resurrection of Our Lord. I stress, of course, that I’m no science guru – added to which I’m forced to skim read these days for a number of reasons with which I won’t bore you – so I may be misinterpreting. If so, apologies, and the haggis and neeps will be on me if you ever darken our Scottish shores…

        * I only hope my next door neighbour doesn’t see this or he’ll be heading for the airport, with or without his passport 😀

  18. To keep the record straight: The Church teaches “the resurrection of the body”. The Church does not teach “the bodily Resurrection of Jesus.” The adjective “bodily” is not used in #36 and #37 from Pius X. The Church teaches that the Resurrection of Jesus was an historical event.

    • David,

      To keep the record even straighter, here’s a quote from the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

      999 …Christ is raised with his own body
      : “See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself”;553 but he did not return to an earthly life. So, in him, “all of them will rise again with their own bodies which they now bear,” but Christ “will change our lowly body to be like his glorious body,” into a “spiritual body”:554

      Seems to me that the Church does, indeed, teach “the bodily resurrection of Jesus”. It is, in fact, upon that belief that “the resurrection of the body” (of the rest of us) relies.

      Or am I misunderstanding your meaning?

        • David Roemer

          If you, at your age, have to consult the Catechism to verify the principle dogma upon which 2000 years of Christianity stands, then there are very serious questions to be asked about your religious formation as a child and young adult. I mean, ignorance of so fundamental a dogma in a man of your intellect beggars belief!

          • I bought the Kindle edition of the Catechism, which seems to be the same as the one on the Vatican site. I’m focusing attention on Section II, Chapter 2, Article 5, Paragraph 2: On the Third Day He Rose from the Dead (section #638 to #647) I read it quickly and it will take me some effort to make my case. I’ll do my best to explain to you that the Church does not believe in the bodily Resurrection of Jesus. It only believes in the Resurrection of Jesus without the ridiculous adjective. The use of this word may strike you as a harmless improvement over the Church’s official teaching, but it is not harmless and it is not an improvement. Be patient. Give me a chance.

            • David Roemer

              I regret that I am running out of patience with you. You do not deserve a chance, you are a heretic who thinks he knows better than the Popes, Councils, Fathers, Saints and believers of 2000 years of Catholicism. Personally, I think you’re just winding us up here. If not, then I suggest you go speak to a sound Catholic priest about your faith and a shrink about that ego.

              • Athanasius: We don’t know what a human being is. Either we are embodied spirits or spirited bodies. We know that our freedom is before God, and we believe that when we die our past will somehow be gathered up and it will be the defining moment of our existence. We can hope for salvation with fear and trembling. Salvation is a perfect fulfillment based upon our human experience. We can be saved body and soul. To talk about “bodily resurrection” is nonsense. Grow up.

                • David Roemer,

                  “Salvation is a perfect fulfilment based upon our human experience”.

                  That’s the first time I’ve ever heard that. I’ve always understood that salvation is from Hell, and that is part of divine revelation. My human experience can’t teach me anything about salvation.

            • If the Church doesn’t teach “bodily” resurrection, what kind of resurrection is it? “Jesus rose from the dead” seems clear. If you think “bodily” is a “ridiculous” adjective, then you need to replace it with one which you think is… well… not ridiculous.

              • Fr. Hadron refers to the “real bodily resurrection” not the “bodily resurrection.” In his phrase, the word “bodily” modifies “real.” In the phrase you are touting, “bodily” modifies “resurrection.” I have no objection to the phrase “real bodily resurrection.”

                Fr. Hadron’s statement, however, that “heretics” deny the factuality of the Resurrection of Jesus is nonsense. John Dominic Crossans, for example, traces the Resurrection back to within a few years of Jesus’ death. Crossans is not a heretic. He is an atheist trying to persuade people life ends in the grave. Crossans also says that Jesus was buried in a mass grave for criminals. Fr. Raymond Brown, on the other hand argues that it is historically certain Jesus was buried in a separate tomb, as reported in the Gospels. However, I don’t think Fr. Brown says it is historically certain that the tomb was empty.

                John Dominic Crossans, and his like, are ignorant, stupid, irrational, and dishonest about the existence of God. I believe that Jesus is alive in a new life with God and that if we follow Jesus the same good thing can happen to us for a large number of reasons: the existence of God, the Resurrection, the Shroud of Turin, and so on. I think Fr. Hadron would agree with this: If someone says, “God hasn’t given me the gift of faith” you can’t accuse them of having bad judgment..

          • This is what I have done so far: There is nothing in Sections 638, 641, 642, 644, 646, and 647 about the “bodily” Resurrection of Jesus.

            Section 639: “The mystery of Christ’s resurrection is a real event, with manifestations that were historically verified, as the New Testament bears witness.” This says the resurrection is an historical event. The catechism does not say “bodily resurrection” because that would imply that a video camera could have recorded the event. What is “historically verified” is that the followers of Jesus renewed their fellowship and swore up and down that Jesus appeared to them.

            Section 640: “The first element we encounter in the framework of the Easter events is the empty tomb. In itself it is not a direct proof of Resurrection; the absence of Christ’s body from the tomb could be explained otherwise. Nonetheless the empty tomb was still an essential sign for all. Its discovery by the disciples was the first step toward recognizing the very fact of the Resurrection.” If the Catechism was teaching the “bodily resurrection of Jesus,” it would say that the empty tomb was a fact just as it says the Resurrection is a fact. It only says that the empty tomb is a sign.

            Section 643: “Given all these testimonies, Christ’s Resurrection cannot be interpreted as something outside the physical order, and it is impossible not to acknowledge it as an historical fact.” My understanding of the phrase “physical order” is that the appearance of Jesus affected the emotions of the followers.

            Section 645: ”By means of touch and the sharing of a meal, the risen Jesus establishes direct contact with his disciples…..Yet at the same time this authentic, real body possesses the new properties of a glorious body: not limited by space and time but able to be present how and when he wills…” First the catechism says Jesus had a body, then it says the body was not limited by space and time. What the catechism is saying is the followers of Jesus had a religious experience.

            • David,

              Here’s an extract from a talk by Fr John Hardon SJ (RIP) on the subject of the Resurrection of Christ, with a link to the entire article:

              “… Over the centuries there have been many theories trying to explain away the real bodily resurrection of Christ. And let me tell you, articles in journals, books, big, I’ll use the word, fat volumes stuffed with learned ammunition devoid of the truth, undermining the reality of Christ’s bodily, physical, real resurrection. One theory for example, claims that Jesus did not really die on the cross. Another theory says that His body was stolen from the grave by His disciples who then proclaimed that He had risen. Still others insist that the disciples imagined Christ came back from the dead. Others again, that Christ’s resurrection was in the purely, purely supernatural order. What these learned, heretics I call them, call the super historical order which means, it cannot be established on factual grounds. Over the years in teaching Christology, especially to my Jesuit students, I spend weeks concentrating on the historicity of Christ’s resurrection. I know of no learned critic of Christianity, I know of none, who does not try to undermine the Christian faith by denying in subtle, learned language, the historical reality of Christ’s bodily rising from the grave. In teaching this to others, and notice my focus of this meditation will be how we are to understand Christ’s resurrection ourselves in order to be pedagogues of Christ’s resurrection to others. We need not go into a lot of detail, but we should repair those who we train or teach, to give them an intelligent proof that Jesus truly rose from the dead, He was really crucified, He really died, He was really buried, and He truly rose from the dead.” Read more

              • Fr. Hadron refers to the “real bodily resurrection” not the “bodily resurrection.” In his phrase, the word “bodily” modifies “real.” In the phrase you are touting, “bodily” modifies “resurrection.” I have no objection to the phrase “real bodily resurrection.”

                Fr. Hadron’s statement, however, that “heretics” deny the factuality of the Resurrection of Jesus is nonsense. John Dominic Crossans, for example, traces the Resurrection back to within a few years of Jesus’ death. Crossans is not a heretic. He is an atheist trying to persuade people life ends in the grave. Crossans also says that Jesus was buried in a mass grave for criminals. Fr. Raymond Brown, on the other hand argues that it is historically certain Jesus was buried in a separate tomb, as reported in the Gospels. However, I don’t think Fr. Brown says it is historically certain that the tomb was empty.

                John Dominic Crossans, and his like, are ignorant, stupid, irrational, and dishonest about the existence of God. I believe that Jesus is alive in a new life with God and that if we follow Jesus the same good thing can happen to us for a large number of reasons: the existence of God, the Resurrection, the Shroud of Turin, and so on. I think Fr. Hadron would agree with this: If someone says, “God hasn’t given me the gift of faith” you can’t accuse them of having bad judgment.

                • David Roemer,

                  The theological virtues of faith, hope and charity are infused into the soul at baptism. God does not play favorites, giving some the gift of faith and denying it to others. Whether we choose to cooperate with the graces He sends us, is up to us. God invites, He does not force.

                • David,

                  You should read Fr Hardon’s entire talk – you will see that he says, for example: “We have written testimony to Christ’s bodily resurrection…” It’s nonsense anyway to say that “real bodily resurrection” means something different. You are playing semantics all the time.

                  As for Raymond Brown – he is one of the most notorious heretics of our time.

                  As for the opinion of the atheist – who cares? It’s patent nonsense to argue that the Resurrection took place years after Christ’s death. That would make the Evangelists liars. Is that what you think? It will be, of course, if you think the likes of Brown a reliable source.

            • Dr Roemer

              You really do need to read more carefully.

              Para. 643 of the CCC begins ‘Given all these testimonies, Christ’s Resurrection cannot be interpreted as something outside the physical order…’. That is to say it must be interpreted as something within the physical order, that is a bodily resurrection.

              Para. 645 confirms this. It begins ‘By means of touch and the sharing of a meal, the risen Jesus establishes direct contact with his disciples. He invites them in this way to recognize that he is not a ghost and above all to verify that the risen body in which he appears to them is the same body that had been tortured and crucified, for it still bears the traces of his Passion.’ (emphasis added)

              I notice you chose to suppress the second sentence of that quotation when citing para 645. Why would that be?

              Moreover, the answer to Q 129 in the compendium confirms this teaching: ‘His risen body is that which was crucified and bears the marks of his passion.’

              It’s true, of course, that Jesus’s risen body can do weird things like multilocate but then He is Almighty God! In any event, that his physical body rose again is clearly the teaching of the Church, and always has been.

              • There is a disagreement between us about the interpretations of those sections. I stand by my interpretation. However, it may be that we have different interests and goals. The reason people don’t believe in Jesus is that they don’t understand why God exists. The first step to understanding this is understanding the mind-body problem. When people talk about the bodily Resurrection it sounds to me like they don’t understand what a human being is and can’t explain why God exists.

                • David Roemer,

                  Believe me when I say that you are not the person to clarify matters for anyone, not that there is anything to clarify. That exists only in your mind. In all likelihood your contribution will only serve to make previously clear teaching perfectly obscure. But, then, maybe that’s your intention!

                  As I said, you don’t have the Catholic Faith.

                • Dr Roemer

                  I’m sorry, but I don’t see that the passages from the CCC that I quoted are capable of any other interpretation.

                  As for your question ‘Why does God exist’, that is a category error. There is a reason why we exist – because God created us. But there is no reason for His existence – He is un-caused, a necessary Being. If you really think you have to understand why God exists then, I’m afraid, you’re on a hiding to nothing!

                  • I’m glad to see you understand the cosmological argument for God’s existence. But do you understand why there are so many atheists, agnostics, and Christian Liberals? If you look at my slideshow about the Holy Shroud you will find out.

            • David Roemer

              You’re twisting the truth to suit your wild theories. That’s dishonest! You clearly do not have the Catholic Faith.

    • Whaat? The Church DOES teach the bodily resurrection of Our Lord. That’s the WHOLE POINT of Christianity. If Christ didn’t bodily rise from the dead then the Church and the whole of Christendom is a lie, and I wonder why the heck you would bother to believe in anything if that were so.

      My dear sir, you are seriously off track.

      • Therese and Athanasius: I believe in the Apostle’s creed. Why would I lie? I question the faith of clerics who say the Shroud is authentic because they have a motive for covering up their lack of faith. I don’t make any money from preaching the gospel.

        You are both confused about the Resurrection of Jesus as an act of faith and as an historical event. We can see the truth of the proposition that God exists. We cannot see the truth of the proposition that God judges us when we die. We know it is true because God is telling us.

        • David Roemer

          St. Pius X, as I showed you much earlier by those two condemned principles in the Syllabus of Errors (#36 & #37), refutes your theory as heresy. It is you who are confused, not everyone else.

  19. David Roemer

    Maybe this will set you straight:

    Epiphanius of Salamis

    “As for those who profess to be Christians . . . and who confess the resurrection of the dead, of our body and of the body of the Lord . . . but who at the same time say that the same flesh does not rise, but other flesh is given in its place by God, are we not to say that this opinion exceeds all others in impiety” (The Man Well-Anchored 87 [A.D. 374]).

    The Athanasian Creed

    “[Jesus Christ] sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty. From there he shall come to judge the living and the dead; at his coming all men have to rise again with their bodies and will render an account of their own deeds; and those who have done good will go into life everlasting, but those who have done evil, into eternal fire [Rom. 2:6–11]. This is the Catholic faith, unless everyone believes this faithfully and firmly, he cannot be saved” (Athanasian Creed [A.D. 400]).


    “Perish the thought that the omnipotence of the Creator is unable, for the raising of our bodies and for the restoring of them to life, to recall all [their] parts, which were consumed by beasts or by fire, or which disintegrated into dust or ashes, or were melted away into a fluid, or were evaporated away in vapors” (The City of God 22:20:1 [A.D. 419]).

    “God, the wonderful and inexpressible Artisan, will, with a wonderful and inexpressible speed, restore our flesh from the whole of the material of which it was constituted, and it will make no difference to its reconstruction whether hairs go back to hairs and nails go back to nails, or whatever of these had perished be changed to flesh and be assigned to other parts of the body, while the providence of the Artisan will take care that nothing unseemly result” (Handbook of Faith, Hope, and Charity 23:89 [A.D. 421]).

    Justin Martyr

    “The prophets have proclaimed his [Christ’s] two comings. One, indeed, which has already taken place, was that of a dishonored and suffering man. The second will take place when, in accord with prophecy, he shall come from the heavens in glory with his angelic host, when he shall raise the bodies of all the men who ever lived. Then he will clothe the worthy in immortality, but the wicked, clothed in eternal sensibility, he will commit to the eternal fire along with the evil demons” (First Apology 52 [A.D. 151]).

    “Indeed, God calls even the body to resurrection and promises it everlasting life. When he promises to save the man, he thereby makes his promise to the flesh. What is man but a rational living being composed of soul and body? Is the soul by itself a man? No, it is but the soul of a man. Can the body be called a man? No, it can but be called the body of a man. If, then, neither of these is by itself a man, but that which is composed of the two together is called a man, and if God has called man to life and resurrection, he has called not a part, but the whole, which is the soul and the body” (The Resurrection 8 [A.D. 153]).

    Pope Clement I

    “Let none of you say that this flesh is not judged and does not rise again. Just think: In what state were you saved, and in what state did you recover your [spiritual] sight, if not in the flesh? In the same manner, as you were called in the flesh, so you shall come in the flesh. If Christ, the Lord who saved us, though he was originally spirit, became flesh and in this state called us, so also shall we receive our reward in the flesh. Let us, therefore, love one another, so that we may all come into the kingdom of God” (Second Clement 9:1–6 [A.D. 150]).

    The Fourth Lateran Council (1215), infallibly defined that at the second coming Jesus “will judge the living and the dead, to render to every person according to his works, both to the reprobate and to the elect. All of them will rise with their own bodies, which they now wear, so as to receive according to their deserts, whether these be good or bad [Rom. 2:6–11]” (constitution 1).

    Most recently, the Catechism of the Catholic Church reiterated this long-defined teaching, stating, “‘We believe in the true resurrection of this flesh that we now possess’ (Council of Lyons II).

    Our Lord Jesus Christ was first to raise his body from the tomb. He did this by His own power because He is God. In like manner, He will raise the bodies of all the dead at the last judgment, rejoin them with their souls and judge them.

    This is not difficult doctrine to understand if you have the Faith!

    • Evangelization is giving reasons to believe in God. Proselytizing is trying to persuade someone to join your church so you get their donations. I don’t try to persuade Hindus, Protestants, Muslims, etc. to become Catholics because they already have meaningful lives. I don’t mention the doctrine that there is no salvation outside of the Catholic Church because it scandalizes and shocks people.

      Let’s go back to our disagreement. I think: The real bodily Resurrection of Jesus is an historical fact. You think: The bodily Resurrection of Jesus is an historical fact.

  20. Ah, a little light amidst the darkness of your beliefs. You are not a Catholic, Mr Roemer, if you believe that Hindus, Protestants, Muslims etc do not need to become Catholics. You would deny them the Truth because you judge that they already have “meaningful” lives. And who the heck are YOU to judge that? You deny Christ by such a statement, Why do you think that Christ died?

    I would also ask you a plain question, to which I would like a plain answer. Do you believe that Christ is God?

    • David,

      I look forward to your answer to Therese’s question plus this one:

      What do you think that Jesus meant by his very last words on this earth: “Go into the whole world, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost… teaching them [all that I have] commanded you.”

      There were no exceptions given – EVERYONE is to be baptised and follow Christ.

      How do you square that circle with your policy of leaving Protestants, Muslims and Hindus to follow their false religions?

      • The Indian and Chinese religions believe in the existence of a transcendent reality and that perfect fulfillment comes from being united with this transcendent reality. This is the same as believing our purpose in life is to serve God in the hope that we will be with Him at the end of time. These people have meaningful lives, just like Catholics, and I am not interested in converting them.

        Nor am I interested in converting people who don’t have the gift of faith but keep it to themselves and give religion to their children. My ministry is to so-called atheists, agnostics, and liberal Christians who try to persuade people that life ends in the grave. You convert these people by telling the scientific truth about the Shroud of Turin about the historical truth about the Resurrection of Jesus. This is why I asked Pope Francis to correct Timothy Dumbkopf Dolan.

  21. Are you unable or unwilling to answer my simple question? I repeat: do you believe that Christ is God? This is not a difficult question and requires a Yes or No answer.

      • Mr Roemer, are you constitutionally unable to answer a straight question? Do you believe that Christ is God? Yes, or No??

        Also, if, as you assert, one has to believe in and profess what the Catholic Church teaches, what becomes of those Muslims, Buddhists etc and their “transcendent reality”???

        You make NO sense.

  22. “The Indian and Chinese religions believe in the existence of a transcendent reality and that perfect fulfillment comes from being united with this transcendent reality. This is the same as believing our purpose in life is to serve God in the hope that we will be with Him at the end of time.”

    It is not the same, and you are placing your soul in serious danger with this devilish nonsense.

    • Why isn’t is the same? God gives us bodies so we can communicate with our fellow humans. The resurrection of the body means being united with God gives us perfect fulfillment based on our human experience. According to Thomas Aquinas, God is a pure act of existence without a limiting essence. What is the difference between this and saying there exists a transcendent reality? According to Thomas Aquinas, faith in Jesus is of primary and doctrines are secondary. It is more important to believe Jesus is alive in a new life with God than believing in the doctrine of the Trinity. Hindus, most Buddhists, and all Western religions believe that Jesus is alive in a new life with God.

      • David,

        St Thomas Aquinas said nothing of the sort. You cannot quote the Angelic Doctor as you do without giving source references. Of course, anyone remotely familiar with his writings, knows that he has never separated Christ from His Church or made any such distinction between the Person of Christ and His doctrines. That’s utter nonsense. You are creating false dichotomies and putting them into the mouth of Aquinas. Jesus is the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity so it makes no sense to argue that it is more important to believe in Jesus than in the Trinity. That’s like saying it’s more important to know David Roemer than to know David Roemer… Ridiculous. If what you actually mean that it is more important to do the holy will of the Trinity than to be able to define it, that’s a bit different… IS that what you mean?

        As to your question “why isn’t [pagan “transcendent reality”] the same? The answer is, because God has revealed Himself as Father, Son and Holy Ghost, NOT as one “transcendent reality” among many. God cannot lie, cannot deceive nor be deceived, and cannot contradict Himself. He cannot, therefore, chop and change to fit the desires of the various founders of the many world religions. He established One True Religion – Catholicism – and He instructs US to do all in our power to spread that truth and bring others into the Church. To leave people in their false religions is a manifest lack of charity. It is a scandal. I pray that you will think again. Stop reading the nonsense of heretics like Raymond Brown, study the authentic Catholic writers who preach the Faith without diluting it in any way. Oh and – crucially – begin to pray the daily rosary if you haven’t already started to do that. You’ll soon find your mindset changing: the heresies you are currently espousing will stare you squarely in the face and the scales will fall from your eyes – big time.

        • I got my ideas about the historical Jesus and the Resurrection from Raymond Brown. Why is he a heretic? What about John Meier, Edward Schillebeckx, and Hans Kung?

          Also, I remember distinctly Norris Clarke, SJ, who wrote a book on metaphysics, saying in 1963, that Thomas Aquinas said faith in Jesus is more important than doctrine.

          • David,

            Click here to read a short article about Raymond Brown – this will do for starters. I should have been elsewhere half an hour ago, so I’ll respond to the rest of your post later.

            • My complaint against Cardinal Dolan has nothing to do with the Robin Brace article except for the statements he made about the Resurrection of Jesus. I could not understand them. This means, I think, I don’t understand you and you don’t understand me. Let me start with a quotation that makes sense to me:

              “…but Barth eventually became much more evangelical and can be praised for his ongoing fight against the liberalism of his age.”

              My understanding is that liberal Christians believe life ends in the grave, but say God exists to express their compassion for fellow human beings. They follow Jesus because Jesus taught peace on Earth and good will, not because Jesus taught about heaven and hell. Karl Barth is not a liberal Christian.

              I consider the following statement heretical, ignorant, and unintelligent because Brace is confusing the Resurrection of Jesus as an historical event and as an act of faith.

              “For sure, the resurrection of Jesus occurred in real time and space and the acceptance of this becomes clearer in Barth’s later writings but there remains a real sense in which ‘only the eyes of faith’ really see Jesus’ sacrifice and resurrection, and it is nonsensical to others.”

              • David Roemer,

                I always wonder why people say Jesus came to bring peace on earth, because he never said that, as far as I know. What he did say was that he can come “not to bring peace but a sword”.

  23. Your refusal to answer my question is telling. It seems obvious that you don’t believe that Christ is God, and yet you seem afraid to openly admit it. Why, I wonder? You are clearly not a Catholic, and should not purport to be one. You will not fool any Catholic who knows their Faith. You have been seriously misled by the heretical writings you quote above, to the extreme danger of your immortal soul. I will pray for you, but like Athanasius, I see no point in continuing to communicate with you.

  24. As I explained to Pope Francis, there is a close connection between the discovery of the radiation from the Big Bang in the 1960s and the Shroud of Turin. They are both reasons to believe in Jesus. Jesus was a Jewish prophet and the Bible repeatedly says God created the universe from nothing. The Holy Shroud is a reason to believe in Jesus because it can be traced back to the 1st or 2nd century and there is no explanation of how it was created. It is wrong to say God caused the Big Bang and the Shroud is authentic because atheists are listening and it makes you look superstitious and irrational. You first have to explain why God exists.

      • The argument for God’s existence is called the Cosmological Argument. It is an argument, not a proof. However, what transforms it into a proof is that practically all atheists, agnostics, and liberal Christians are ignorant, stupid, irrational, and dishonest about the argument. Wikipedia and the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy have an entry on the Cosmological Argument, bud do not know it, or understand it, or are lying about it.

        The argument is based on the observation that we have free will. This means we possess a center of action that unifies us with respect to ourselves but makes us different from each other: I exist and you exist, but I am not you and you are not me. We are finite beings. But finite beings need a cause.If all beings in the universe were finite, the universe would not be intelligible. Hoping or assuming that the universe is intelligible, an infinite being must exist. In Western religions we call the infinite being God.

  25. I’d like to add that the first step to understanding the argument is understanding the mind-body problem. In my slideshow, at the end, I quote a biology textbook’s statement about the mind-body problem. The author knows only two solutions: materialism and dualism. Most atheists are materialists, but Thomas Nagel is not. He is an atheist who understands the mind-body problem. He understands that humans are embodied spirits. You can tell this from the title of his latest book: “The Mind and Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian view of Nature is Most Certainly False.” This means he is not ignorant, stupid, or irrational. But he is a liar.

    In the book he mentions four solutions to the mind-body problem: 1) dualism, 2) materialism, 3) idealism, 4) monism. Monism is the solution Nagel judges to be true. However, he calls the other three “traditional” solutions. This is nonsense the only traditional view is what he calls monism. This is the position of Thomas Aquinas and the Catholic Church. Dualism and idealism are just quirky bright ideas.

  26. Therese, I think he answered when he said ‘Jesus was a Jewish prophet’. Muslims believe this. Catholics believe that He was Himself the fulfilment of all the prophecies and the Son of God. Why have you all been so patient with the nonsense pedalled in this thread?

    • Christina,

      It’s because people are treated with patience on this blog that I like it, no matter if they are trolls – not that David Roemer is one. I think he is sincere but just sincerely wrong!

      People are scathing and nasty on other blogs when someone they disagree with makes comments, but on CT, everyone is allowed a fair hearing and most of the bloggers try to set them straight without being rude to them.

      Dr Roemer,

      I can see that you really believe what you write here but it is completely heretical and so you need to pay attention to the corrections given you on this blog and acquaint yourself with the traditional teachings of the Church, not pay attention to the “scholars” who contradict those teachings. They don’t have any authority.

      • What is my heresy? Raymond Brown was accused of heresy in thIs conversation and Robin Brace was quoted. My response was to accuse Robin Brace of heresy. I suspect that many people who think the Holy Shroud is authentic don’t understand that faith is both a decision and a gift from God. In revelation, we believe exactly what God wants us to believe. Someone who says, “God hasn’t given me the gift of faith,” is admitting the God exists, that Jesus rose from the dead, and that they have a meaningless life. You can’t accuse such a person of having bad judgment. This is what Brace wrote:

        “For sure, the resurrection of Jesus occurred in real time and space and the acceptance of this becomes clearer in Barth’s later writings but there remains a real sense in which ‘only the eyes of faith’ really see Jesus’ sacrifice and resurrection, and it is nonsensical to others.”

        I interpret this to mean Brace is criticizing Barth for not criticizing people who do not belief in life after death. This is heresy. This is like saying baptism is just a ceremony. Brace does not thank God for his faith. He congratulates himself for being more rational than non-believers.

        • David,

          Your heresy, it seems to me, is to accept the beliefs/claims of schismatics and heretics over the legitimate teaching authority of the Church.

          You accuse the Protestant Robin Brace of heresy – I paid a flying visit to that website (UK apologetics) where the following error is posted:

          “To focus on ‘keeping’ God’s law is an attitude and worldview which can never succeed for the Christian who must strive to walk with God in love and faith. The former was the approach of the Pharisees.” Robin A. Brace.

          “Keeping God’s law… the approach of the Pharisees?” Rubbish. This is a Modernist mantra, which makes no sense and has no basis in fact. Our Lord actually said: “…not one jot or tittle of the Law will pass away till all be fulfilled…” And “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments”.

          So, not surprising that you found Robin Brace guilty of heresy, since schismatics are so, by definition.

          Ditto the other Protestant whom you’ve mentioned more than once, Karl Barth. You are going round in ever-decreasing circles because you are reading the nonsense of these pseudo-theologians/biblical “scholars”, without having a solid grounding in the authentic Catholic interpretation of Scripture. Protestants, in any case, however well meaning, are, by definition, schismatics. They are outside the Church founded by Christ. Are you seriously suggesting that, nevertheless, the Holy Spirit will use them to enlighten us about the Faith?

          And the same goes for the nominally Catholic Fr Raymond Brown – a priest who cast doubt on umpteen dogmas of the Faith including the virginal conception of Our Lord. Why on earth would anyone pay the slightest attention to him when he can’t even get the basics right?

          As a scientist, I would expect you, David, to be aware of the central importance of sources. If you want to find your way from the USA to Scotland, you’d contact a reliable travel agent for all the necessary information about transport, accommodation etc. You wouldn’t ask someone without any serious credentials or authority, would you? If you did, you couldn’t complain if you ended up in Wales. I mean New South Wales!

          And my point is….

          The ONLY reliable authority in matters of religion in this world, is the Magisterium of the Catholic Church… a Pope who does not deviate from what the Christian community has always believed, what has been handed down from the beginning, and those Bishops who teach this same doctrine, in communion with him.

          I suggest you waste no time in studying the landmark encyclical on the subject of the correct interpretation of Sacred Scripture, Providentissimus Deus and be alert, thereafter, to the limited role of bible “experts” and theologians.

          No Catholic is free to contradict the traditional teaching of the Church on any article of Faith, so any priest, such as Brown, who does so is immediately suspect and his writings are to be avoided. Barth, Brace & Brown – seriously bad news, David, all to be avoided, despite the fact that they sound like a firm of top lawyers. You have to laugh… 😉

        • David Roemer

          You ask what your heresy is. Well, here’s a few of them.

          You deny the Divinity of Christ by calling Him a Jewish prophet, which is blasphemy as well as heresy. You deny the physical (bodily) resurrection of Christ, which is heresy. You uphold the practices of pagan Eastern mysticism, which is heresy and you assert that Catholic doctrine is of secondary importance, which is heresy. I trust those few examples answer your question.

        • David Roemer,

          I think you should read the link to the encyclical of Pope Leo in editor’s answer. If you keep on reading the Protestant exegetes you will definitely go astray. I’ve heard so many student priests and teachers saying they got so mixed up because they were reading Barth and Bultmann – Protestant scripture scholars always contradict the Catholic dogmas, and say that things like the Virgin Birth are myths. To avoid heresy, you need to know the teaching of the Church and how to read the Scriptures so that encyclical by Pope Leo will enlighten you.

  27. David Roemer,

    What you represent is not a “slideshow” but a sideshow!

    I can well understand why everyone you have corresponded with regarding your eccentric (to say the least) theories has pretty quickly given you short shrift. Now, please be good enough to go peddle your mad ideas somewhere else. We are Catholics here, not Gnostics. Try the Jesuits, they’re generally into looney theories these days.

  28. I don’t think anyone here grasps the gravity of the situation. I am accusing Cardinal Dolan of violating Canon 279, section 1 against pseudoscience, that is, lying about science. It the Pope ignores my complaint, I will ask the College of Cardinals to cancel his election and choose another Pope.

    You should consider what happened as a result of the Church’s condemning Galileo. Atheistic propaganda causes even devout Catholics to think the Church made a mistake. In fact, the Church showed a better understanding of science than Galileo. Galileo was insisting that the Copernican theory was a fact. The Church said it was just a theory. The Church was right. It was only 100 years later that telescopes proved the Earth moved around the Sun. If I have to condemn Pope Francis, atheists will jump on this and argue that religious people are irrational. I advise you all to search your consciences.

    • David Roemer

      It is clear that it is you who have difficulty in grasping the seriousness of the situation. I have named four heresies that you subscribe to and yet you bypass the evidence and start accusing Cardinal Dolan as the one at fault. Cardinals of the Catholic Church do not, as a rule, take lessons in orthodoxy from heretic laymen. It is you, then, who needs to search his conscience. I will say no more than this because you are beginning to look ridiculous.

  29. David,

    Canon 279 # 1 also says clerics are to avoid profane novelties – where to start!

    Your confusion is breath-taking. Even if your interpretation of Canon Law were correct, you clearly do not understand that no-one on earth has the authority to sack a pope – certainly not in the scenario you paint. You simply do not understand the nature and purpose of the Church, as opposed to the personal opinions of Catholics, including clerics, on secondary matters such as the Turin Shroud.

    You also bypass that part of Canon 279 # 1 which applies to Fr Raymond Brown and other heretics: “clerics are to hold to that solid doctrine based on sacred Scripture which has been handed down by our forebears and which is generally received in the Church, as set out especially in the documents and Councils and of the Roman Pontiffs.” Brown flouts that canon with bells on, yet you defend him. Your thinking exhibits confusion into chaos, David.

    Note: Canon Law rests on the assumption that we are living in normal times. If the pontiff departs from “what has been handed down by our forebears” (by, e.g. promoting ecumenism) then we may (and must) ignore his directives in favour of Catholic Tradition. We don’t have the authority to sack him however. If only! And since the Church has no authority to pronounce definitively on scientific matters, your worries are built on sand. No pronouncement has been made by the Church on the Shroud, and the most that could ever be said is that – as with approved private apparitions – it is worthy of belief/veneration. Not mandatory. So why are you wasting your time making the issue of the Shroud into something it’s not?. Cardinal Dolan doesn’t HAVE to “lie” about the Shroud – he’s free to think whatever he likes about it. Just like the rest of us.

    • The entire sentence in the Code of Canon Law on the Vatican website is “They are to avoid profane novelties and pseudo-science.” The Pope is the person the Catholic Church regards as Pope. Since the Catholic Church is infallible, it will stop recognizing as Pope someone who is in error. Saying the Holy Shroud is authentic is lying about science. It is like saying saying God caused the Big Bang, advocating the theory of intelligent design, or advocating creationism. It is pseudoscience.

      My slideshow says the Holy Shroud should be venerated and explains why it is a reason to believe in Jesus. Yet Cardinal Dolan, in writing, said I was “debunking” the Holy Shroud. If you read my complaint, you would know that atheists are now saying the Holy Shroud is authentic.

      • Wrong, David – the pope can be as much in error about science as he likes, it makes no difference to his status as pontiff nor does it change the indefectibility of the Church. You simply do not understand the nature of the Church and the papacy any more than the daft editors of the Catholic papers here who keep insisting that the Holy Spirit picked the pope. That’s NOT what the Church claims – the cardinals in conclave pick the pope and the Holy Spirit may or may not make His presence felt. Seems He was very busy elsewhere at the time of the last conclave!

        • What concerns me is that saying the Holy Shroud is authentic makes the Catholic Church look ridiculous. Jerry Coyne is a militant atheists who has a blog. He wrote the blog below because of an absurd paper promoting the authenticity of the Holy Shroud. His argument is based on the carbon dating fiasco. My argument is based on the non-smeared blood stains. This is the link:

          • David,

            Whatever individuals say about the Shroud does not make the Church “look ridiculous” any more than the numpties (including the likes of Cardinal Schonborn) who support the hoax non-shrine of Medjugorje makes the Church look ridiculous, They make themselves look ridiculous and gullible but not “the Church”.

            I cannot impress on you sufficiently that whether or not the Shroud is authentic is a matter of only secondary (at best) importance in the great scheme of things.

        • In defense of my sanity, I’d like to point out that I persuaded the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers to withdraw its sponsorship of a conference about the Shroud of Turin by filing an ethics complaint against Bruno Barberis, who is an advisor to the Custodian of the Shroud and an organizer of the conference. The Italy section of the IEEE tricked the IEEE into sponsoring its conference on the Holy Shroud. Who is insane? Me or Bruno Barberis?

          • David Roemer

            Have you ever heard the saying: “You strain on a gnat and swallow a camel”?

            The authenticity of the shroud is the gnat. The adoption of multiple heresies is the camel. This is my final word to you.

      • David Roemer

        Forget your slideshow. What about your heresies? These are much more important issues for your soul than the shroud of Turin. What is wrong with you? It is you who are proposing profane novelties and pseudoscience, can you not see this? Your most recent comment is now casting doubt on Creationism. I am seriously beginning to question your sanity.

  30. If cardinal Dolan refused the request, it was for a very good reason. Cardinal Dolan is a very good traditional catholic and is not in the mood to see relativism being spread around. The Shroud is real, Jesus already revealed it to some seers, even Jesus true face was reveled, so we do not need scientists messing with what they should. Period !!! As catholics, we are to obey the hierarchy, period !! I am sure Cardinal Dolan knows best

    • .I am accusing Cardinal Dolan of violating the section in Canon 279 against pseudoscience. Jerry Coyne, who is a militant atheist, wrote a blog titled “the-shroud-of-turin-why-religion-is-a-pseudoscience” when someone came up with the absurd theory that radiation caused by an earthquake produced the image on the Shroud. Saying the Shroud is authentic is pseudoscience and misrepresents our salvation history.

      Many devout Catholics, because of the power of atheistic propaganda, think the Catholic Church practiced pseudoscience when it condemned Galileo. It was only 100 years after Galileo that telescopes became powerful enough to see the Copernican theory was true. Cardinal Bellarmine was a better scientist than Galileo.

      Jerry Coyne thinks the Holy Shroud is a fake because he accepts the carbon-dating fiasco the Catholic Church supervised. The Holy Shroud is a reason to believe in Jesus because we don’t know how Gnostics created it in the 1st or 2nd century. It is a sign, as my slideshow explains. Some atheists, not Jerry Coyne and his like, use the authenticity of the Holy Shroud to give an historical explanation for the Resurrection of Jesus.

    • Luis

      What you say about the shroud is correct, but you’ll never convince David Roemer of the fact. If you’ve been following the exchanges on this thread you’ll realise that, whatever else he may be, David Roemer is not a Catholic. He is a poor souls lost in senseless arguments and Eastern mysticism, worthy more of our prayers than our debating time.

      I have to take issue with your assertion, however, that “Cardinal Dolan is a very good traditional Catholic.” With respect, that claim is almost as nutty as David Roemer’s.

      Cardinal Dolan is a Modernist who says the New Mass, approves ecumenism, permits Communion in the hand, etc., all of which things are solemnly condemned by the Church and the Popes pre-Vatican II. If you read St. Pius X’s Pascendi Dominici Gregis, for example, available online, you’ll soon discover that Modernism is exactly the same thing as relativism. For some, it’s moral relativism. For others, theological and liturgical. Cardinal Dolan, like most of the Catholic hierarchy today, falls into the second category.

      Upholding the perennial moral teaching of the Church is not sufficient to make one a traditional Catholic. One must also uphold the traditional faith and liturgical practices as well. Cardinal Dolan manifestly fails the latter test.

      • All Luis did was restate his belief that the Shroud is authentic. This is all that you are saying too. Let me repeat: The Holy Shroud is obviously a fake because of the detailed image and unsmeared blood stains. It is also a sign or reason to believe in Jesus because no one can figure out how the Gnostics did it. You are robbing people of a reason to believe, and your are making Catholics look stupid.

  31. David Roemer

    Maybe the Gnostics didn’t know how it was done either. Ever thought about that!

    Anyway, we’re not going down this daft road again. You believe what you like and the rest of us will believe the evidence.

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