Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Photography and the Holy Face of Manoppello

It will be true for the Holy Face of Manoppello, as it was for the Shroud of Turin, that photography will make it possible for the real nature and importance of the relic to be known and accepted by the vast majority of people throughout the world. However, unlike the Shroud of Turin, the unique nature of the fabric of the Veil of Manoppello means that there will be a vast number of strikingly different views of the Holy Face.

As one who goes to the Church of St. Michael in Manoppello and has his mind boggled by the changes in the Holy Face on the Cloth of marine byssus, it will be possible for the patient observer who has access to a good number of photographs of the Holy Face to have a similar experience. This could be combined with appropriate readings from Holy Scripture and from the writings of the Saints, and much good would result. As we approach the time of the next exposition of the Shroud of Turin, it seems appropriate that there be an effort to help those who will be observing and venerating the Shroud to be able to do the same for the Holy Face of Manoppello.

Photographers such as Paul Badde, who is responsible for the vast majority of the photos on this blog, as well as Giovanni Cati who provided the photos for the 1977 Eucharistic Congress which came to influence Sr. Blandina Paschalis Schlomer, and Antonio Teseo whose work is available on his blogs as well as Youtube, are following in the footsteps of Secondo Pia whose photos of the Shroud of Turin changed the course of history. There are certainly many other photographers of the Holy Face to whom we should be grateful and I apologize for not mentioning them, with the intention to rectify this oversight as soon as possible.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A Sign of the Transfiguration of the Lord

"Jesus took Peter, James and his brother, John, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light." Matthew 17:1-9

In 1690 the Capuchin Friars of the Shrine of the Holy Face of Manoppello established that August 6 would be the feast of the Holy Face to coincide with the solemn liturgy of the Transfiguration of the Lord. Some time later the Archbishop of Chieti and the superior of the Capuchins agreed that the external celebration of the feast of the Holy Face would be transferred to the second Sunday of May, which later was changed to the third Sunday of May, as it is in our time. However the feast of the Transfiguration remains to this day intimately connected to the history and devotion of the Shrine of the Holy Face