Vatican Notes & Quotes
BY Jim Cosgrove
October 31 - November 6, 1999 Issue | Posted 10/31/99 at 1:00 PM
But America's editors backpedaled after airing what some might have viewed as strong support for Pius, recommending, for instance, that in the wake of suspicions raised by the book about Pius’ actions during the Holocaust, the Vatican should establish an international commission of Catholic and Jewish historians to review them. The editors also recommended that Pius's beatification process be stalled until Pius is cleared by the court of popular opinion.
Meanwhile, Inside the Vatican in its October issue provides several articles delineating the great help Pope Pius XII was to Jewish friends from his boyhood and then throughout his pontificate.
Relics of St. Luke Found in Padua
Research on the sarcophagus was directed by anatomy pathologist Vito Terribile Wiel Marin, a professor of Anatomy and Histology at the University of Padua. After removing the heavy marble slab that covered the sarcophagus, researchers discovered a large lead box which was held shut by two red wax seals. The box rested on a wooden board, the magazine reported.
One of the researchers, Father Daniel Libanor, wrote that the skeleton inside the box was missing a cranium, a right elbow and a right anklebone. According to the study, the bones are those of a man who died in old age, somewhere between 70 and 85 years old.
This data confirms what Christian tradition teaches us about the evangelist, and it adds to the record that the Evangelist suffered from acute, diffused osteoporosis, grave arthrosis of the spinal cord, and pulmonary emphysema.
The bones were arranged with great care, reflecting the honor in which the Evangelist was held in antiquity. Vessels were also found in the sarcophagus attesting to the authenticity of the relics, the magazine said.
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