Ask Fr. Robert J. Spitzer Have questions? Ask Fr. Spitzer and find answers here at Magis Center. EverythingAsk Fr. SpitzerSort By NoneDateAuthor READ MORE Why is the Shroud of Turin Still a Mystery? April 18, 2018 With all of the tests run on the Shroud of Turin, why are scientists still disputing its validity? https://www.magiscenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/FSU-26April17-Clip-1.mp4 The Shroud has undergone considerably more scientific testing than any other relic in human history. The 1978 STURP Investigation and subsequent investigations were remarkably thorough, and with the exception of the questionable 1988 carbon dating (see video above), all the evidence points to its being the burial cloth of Jesus. Contemporary Dating Tests The vanillin dating test of Dr. Raymond Rogers, the two spectroscopic analyses (of Dr. Giulio Fanti), and the compressibility and breaking strength tests (of Dr. Giulio Fanti) date the Shroud to a time commensurate with the life and crucifixion of Jesus. Extrinsic Dating Evidence Testing of pollen samples by Dr. Max Frei, roman coins on the eyes of the image on the Shroud, and 120 coincidences of blood and fluid stains between the Shroud and the Sudarium (Facecloth of Oviedo) give evidence of a date and location of the Shroud’s origin similar to that of Jesus. Blood Stains on the Shroud The blood stains tell a story very similar to the highly unusual crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth (for more information, check out this article) – they were imprinted on the Shroud before the image was made (the opposite of what would need to be done by a forger. Image on the Shroud The image was not formed by dyes, chemicals, vapors, or scorching. The only known explanation for the formation of the image is an intense burst of vacuum ultraviolet radiation (equivalent to the output of 14,000 excimer lasers) emitted from every three-dimensional point of the body in the Shroud. For more information on these tests and more, check out Fr. Spitzer's article, Science and the Shroud of Turin. READ MORE Where did Jesus' Y-Chromosome come from? April 13, 2018 Jesus, being fully man, must have had a Y-chromosome, but since he was born of the Virgin Mary, where did it come from? A viewer submits this question in this clip from Fr. Spitzer's Universe and asks if any genetic testing has been done on blood from the Shroud of Turin or Eucharistic miracles. https://www.magiscenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/Jesus27-Y-Chromosome.mp4 For more on miracles, check out these articles on the intercession of Fulton Sheen and the miracles of Jesus from a historian's point of view. READ MORE Inconsistencies in Scripture April 5, 2018 Can we believe the scriptural accounts of Jesus' passion, even though there are inconsistencies? Fr. Spitzer tackles this question in this clip from EWTN's Fr. Spitzer's Universe. https://www.magiscenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/Inconsistencies-in-Scripture-clip.mp4 To determine if we can accept inconsistencies in the bible, we must examine the reliability of eye-witness accounts. In addition to the six main criteria to examine historicity, historians, along with psychologists and lawyers, deal with human recollection in their work - here's what they already know. Inconsistencies in Memory Perhaps the biggest factor in recollection is memory itself. We often think of our brain as a video recorder, constantly taking in the feed and storing it in the recesses of our mind until we bring it to the forefront to press play. But according to an article from Scientific America, this is not true. "On the contrary, psychologists have found that memories are reconstructed rather than played back each time we recall them. The act of remembering, says eminent memory researcher and psychologist Elizabeth F. Loftus of the University of California, Irvine, is 'more akin to putting puzzle pieces together than retrieving a video recording.' " Even with the best of intentions, we inadvertently say things that are inaccurate. Telling a Story Have you ever started telling a story in the same room with someone who was there? At some point, they probably interjected with a statement like, "That's not how it happened!" or "That's not how I remember it." It is common for people to recount events differently, as each person has a unique point of view from which they view the world. An article from the Standford Journal of Legal Studies explains this phenomenon. "Every act of telling and retelling is tailored to a particular listener; we would not expect someone to listen to every detail of our morning commute, so we edit out extraneous material. The act of telling a story adds another layer of distortion, which in turn affects the underlying memory of the event." As we piece together events to make a comprehensive story, we either edit out or add details to make it more compelling and comprehensive. Conclusion If our memory is imperfect and we shape our stories from our point of view - can we rely on eye-witness accounts at all? Think back to the last story you told when someone else remembered it differently. Did that event really happen despite the inconsistencies? Of course it did. The details may vary, but the main events remain. For more videos from Fr. Spitzer's Universe, check out our YouTube page. READ MORE Did Jesus' Divinity Save Him from Pain on the Cross? March 30, 2018 Today, on Good Friday, between the hours of noon and 3:00pm, we reflect on the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. The wounds of Jesus are horrific to think about – yet alone endure. As we reflect on His death, we may wonder if He was able to more easily withstand the unbearable pain of crucifixion due to His divinity. Fr. Spitzer discusses this thought in this clip from Fr. Spitzer's Universe. https://www.magiscenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Did-Jesus27-Divinity-Save-Him-from-Pain3F.mp4 Check out these links for related articles on divine intervention, the Shroud of Turin, and historic evidence for Jesus' miracles, as well as this video discussing the reasonableness of Jesus Christ. READ MORE The Catholic Church on Evolution March 22, 2018 The Catholic Church often gets a reputation as anti-science — especially when it comes to evolution. Is it possible for Catholics to believe in evolution without contradicting Church doctrine? https://www.magiscenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/The-Catholic-Church-on-Evolution.mp4 For more information from Fr. Spitzer on evolution, check out this article that focuses on the bible and evolution and this video which discusses the historical relation between the Church and scientists. Also available is this article, God’s Periodic Table… & Evolution from Dr. Robert Kurland (AKA, Dr. Bob), a retired professor who taught Physics at both Harvard and Carnegie Melon. READ MORE A Relationship with God March 19, 2018 Today we celebrate the feast of St. Joseph, the Husband of Mary. We can certainly learn a lot from St. Joseph, especially when it comes to his relationship with God. Fr. Spitzer talks about this relationship and how it teaches us to overcome temptation and engage with God. https://www.magiscenter.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Mary27s-and-Joseph27s-Relationship-with-God.mp4 READ MORE What Exactly is the Magis Center, & What Part of the Christian Bible do You Deem as More Important, & What are Your Beliefs? July 19, 2016 The Magis Center of Reason and Faith is dedicated to looking at the evidence for a transcendent being from physics, philosophy, mathematics and metaphysics. READ MORE How do we know that the Direct Creator of the Physical Universe is the Unrestricted Intelligible Reality and not a Creation of the Unrestricted Reality? July 19, 2016 How do we know that the Direct Creator of the Physical Universe is the Unrestricted Intelligible Reality and not a Creation of the Unrestricted Reality? READ MORE What would be a Good Introduction to Philosophy? A Book or Primer that You Could Recommend to the Layman? July 19, 2016 There are several good books that can introduce you to philosophy on a rather serious level. READ MORE Is there a Way to Picture Reality that’s not Linked to Time or Space? July 19, 2016 No. The word picture – or picture thinking – is a component of the imagination, which spacializes all constructs. READ MORE How do I reconcile an all-powerful creator with the God of the Judeo-Christian Bible? July 19, 2016 Suppose we agree that there was a creator of some kind. How could that creator be the God of the Bible, who is full of vengeance and anger? READ MORE If Nothing can Come from Nothing, Where did “God” Come From? July 19, 2016 Fr. Spitzer discusses the question of "If nothing can come from nothing, where did 'God' come from?" Ask My Question Ask Fr. Spitzer your Reason or Faith-based question! Url Ask Father Spitzer your Reason or Faith based question: First name Email Address What's your question for Fr. Spitzer?