Physical Evidence of Christ??

One of the biggest problems in believing in the christ myth is the total lack of any physical evidence of his time on earth. Ally this with the lack of any corroborative narrative in the recognised historical texts and one can see why rational people don't believe the stories. However the holy prepuce has always been a soure of potential corroborative evidenec sought by many christians.

 The first reference to the survival of Christ's severed foreskin comes in the second chapter of the apocryphal Arabic Infancy Gospel which contains the following story:

  1. And when the time of his circumcision was come, namely, the eighth day, on which the law commanded the child to be circumcised, they circumcised him in a cave.
  2. And the old Hebrew woman took the foreskin (others say she took the navel-string), and preserved it in an alabaster-box of old oil of spikenard.
  3. And she had a son who was a druggist, to whom she said, "Take heed thou sell not this alabaster box of spikenard-ointment, although thou shouldst be offered three hundred pence for it."
  4. Now this is that alabaster-box which Mary the sinner procured, and poured forth the ointment out of it upon the head and feet of our Lord Jesus Christ, and wiped it off with the hairs of her head.[1]
Circumcision of Christ, fresco from the Preobrazhenski Monastery, Bulgaria

Foreskin relics began appearing in Europe during the Middle Ages. The earliest recorded sighting came on December 25, 800, when Charlemagne gave it to Pope Leo III when the latter crowned the former Emperor. Charlemagne claimed that it had been brought to him by an angel while he prayed at the Holy Sepulchre, although a more prosaic report says it was a wedding gift from the Byzantine Empress Irene. The Pope placed it into the Sanctum sanctorum in the Lateran basilica in Rome with other relics.[2]

Per the author David Farley, "Depending on what you read, there were eight, twelve, fourteen, or even 18 different holy foreskins in various European towns during the Middle Ages."[3] In addition to the Holy Foreskin in Rome, other claimants included the Cathedral of Le Puy-en-Velay, Santiago de Compostela, the city of Antwerp, Coulombs in the diocese of Chartres, France as well as Chartres itself, and churches in Besançon, Newport, Metz, Hildesheim, Charroux, Conques, Langres, Antwerp, Fécamp, Puy-en-Velay, Stoke on Trent, Calcata, and two in Auvergne.[3]

One of the most famous prepuces arrived in Antwerp in the Brabant in 1100 as a gift from king Baldwin I of Jerusalem, who purchased it in Palestine in the course of the first crusade. This prepuce became famous when the bishop of Cambray, during the celebration of the Mass, saw three drops of blood blotting the linens of the altar. A special chapel was constructed and processions organised in honour of the miraculous relic, which became the goal of pilgrimages. In 1426 a brotherhood was founded in the cathedral "van der heiliger Besnidenissen ons liefs Heeren Jhesu Cristi in onser liever Vrouwen Kercke t' Antwerpen"; its 24 members were all abbots and prominent laymen. The relic disappeared in 1566, but the chapel still exists, decorated by two stained glass windows donated by king Henry VII of England and his wife Elizabeth of York in 1503.

The abbey of Charroux claimed the Holy Foreskin was presented to the monks by Charlemagne. In the early 12th century, it was taken in procession to Rome where it was presented before Pope Innocent III, who was asked to rule on its authenticity. The Pope declined the opportunity. At some point, however, the relic went missing, and remained lost until 1856 when a workman repairing the abbey claimed to have found a reliquary hidden inside a wall, containing the missing foreskin. The rediscovery, however, led to a theological clash with the established Holy Prepuce of Calcata, which had been officially venerated by the Church for hundreds of years; in 1900, the Roman Catholic Church resolved the dilemma by ruling that anyone thenceforward writing or speaking of the Holy Prepuce would be excommunicated.[4] In 1954, after much debate, the punishment was changed to the harsher degree of excommunication, vitandi (shunned);[4] and the Second Vatican Council later removed the Day of the Holy Circumcision from the Latin church calendar, although Eastern Catholics and Traditional Roman Catholics still celebrate the Feast of the Circumcision of Our Lord on January 1.[4][5]

The foreskin given to Pope Leo III by Charlemagne was looted during the Sack of Rome in 1527. The German soldier who stole it was captured in the village of Calcata later the same year. Thrown into prison, he hid the jeweled reliquary in his cell, where it remained until its rediscovery in 1557. Many miracles (freak storms and perfumed fog overwhelming the village) followed.[4] Housed in Calcata, it was venerated from that time onwards, with the Church approving the authenticity by offering a ten-year indulgence to pilgrims.[2] Pilgrims, nuns and monks flocked to the church. "Calcata was a must-see destination on the pilgrimage map.

Eightteen foreskins, wow.

 

stevester stevester
46-50, M
3 Responses Feb 24, 2009

Evidence of Christ? Evidence for any of the hundreds of gods of human imagination.

I BELIEVE IN GOD, THE VIRGIN MARY AND JESUS.<br />
<br />
I´AM BELIEVER AND I DON´T BELONG TO CHURCHE, BECAUSE THE CHURCH JUST LIMIT THE MEN AND WOMEN.<br />
<br />
I HAD A FRIEND WHO BELONG TO CHURCHE AND HE PREFERED TO BE ATHEIST.<br />
<br />
I THINK THAT MANY PEOPLE ARE REALLY DISSAPOINTED ABOUT THE BEHAVIOUR OF THE PEOPLE WHO BELONG TO CHURCHE. ¿WHY? , BECAUSE I THINK THAT MANY PEOPLE TRY TO TEACH THE TEACHINGS OF GOD IN A NEGATIVE WAY.<br />
I THINK IF PEOPLE TRY TO DO IT IN A SIMPLE WAY WITH LOVE AND TO LET THAT PEOPLE LIVE WHAT THEY HAVE TO LIVE, MANY PEOPLE WHO ATHEIST ARE, THEY WOULD APPROACH TO GOD.<br />
GOD IS THE MOST WONDERFUL IN THE LIFE.<br />
<br />
I THINK THAT PEOPLE HAVE TO GO BEYOND OF THE MIND.<br />
PEOPLE WHO WANT TO UNDERSTAND WITH THE MIND TO GOD , NEVER ARE GOING TO FIND SOMETHING, IT`S JUST WITH THE HEART THE ONLY WAY FOR UNDERSTANDING TO GOD. <br />
PEOPLE TRY TO SEE FOR BELIEVING, AND YOU HAVE TO BELIEVE FIRST FOR SEEING, THAT IS THE FAITH.<br />
<br />
THE ONLY THING THAT I CAN TELL YOU IS THE VOICE OF GOD IS INSIDE OF EACH PERSON, AND YOU HAVE TO REFLECT IN THE BOTTOM OF YOUR HEART, BECAUSE HE IS THERE.<br />
SOMETHING THAT I CAN TELL YOU IS WHEN YOU PUT IN YOUR CENTER TO GOD, YOUR LIFE CHANGE, EVERYTHING YOU SEE IN DIFFERENT WAY. YOU WANT TO BE A BEST PERSON EACH DAY, TO LIVE WITH LOVE YOUR LIFE, TO LOVE ALL THE PEOPLE, TO REFLECT OF YOURSELF, TO LIVE IN THE TRUTH, IN RECTITUDE OF CONSCIENCE.<br />
<br />
ALL THE PEOPLE HAVE TO DO WHAT THEIR CONSCIENCES SAY, TO LISTEN THEIR HEARTS , NOT OUTSIDE.

sciantel, thanks for the sentiment but I have experienced many different aspects of religion but it doesn't work for me. I am an ardent atheist. Members of my family are believers and good for them, but it isn't part of my life plan. I have faith but in the temporal not the spiritual. Coming form Ireland I have seen deeds committed in the name of the various gods but I have also men and women do things of incredible generosity of spirit, human spirit that is. Good luck