Fr. Andrew Dalton, LC, lives in Rome where he teaches Biblical Theology of the Passion of Christ at the Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum.
The Shroud of Turin, the ancient burial cloth believed to have covered Christ’s body in the tomb, is a passion of his.
He has lectured on the Shroud all over the world, including China, Singapore, and the Philippines. He loves to emphasize the evangelical opportunity Shroud science affords: “Scientism has unleashed a frontal attack on religion, sweeping droves of young people from the flock. Meanwhile, the most rigorous science, quite paradoxically, continues to champion a cloth that signals the central mysteries of Christian faith, namely, the Incarnation and the Resurrection. And I think the world ought to know about it.”
It should come as no surprise that the Atlanta, Georgia native is enthusiastic about inviting people all over the world to take part in a new online program run by the Science and Faith Institute of the Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum, which grants a post graduate certificate in Shroud Studies.
Those who would like to take the course for their own enrichment without earning the certificate are also welcome to audit the course, at a reduced cost.
Fr. Andrew shares, “In 2011, ten years after joining the seminary, I attended a lecture about a burial shroud bearing the image of a crucified man. The victim seems to have been crowned with thorns, scourged with a Roman whip, and pierced in the side. I literally lost sleep that night. To this date, the best peer-reviewed science points to the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin, and no laboratory has ever reproduced a remotely similar image. Whether you are driven by a desire to share the Gospel with an increasingly secularized world or simply intrigued by one of history’s greatest mysteries, here is an open door.”
The course, offered in English, has never had access to a learning platform of this caliber. The Postgraduate Certificate in Shroud Studies, which began in 2011 in Italian, brings together expertise from all over the world, including the International Center of Sindonology in Turin and the Giulio Ricci Diocesan Center of Sindonology in Rome.
Specialists in diverse fields—physics, forensic medicine, archeology, history, biblical exegesis, theology, apostolate, etc.—offer an in-depth study of one of the most intriguing mysteries of all time. This program offers a systematic approach to the intellectual challenges posed by the Shroud of Turin, as well as the opportunity to go deeper into the message that it proposes to the faith and to the heart of believers.
The course, which is two semesters long, has open registration until March 24th, 2018.
Barrie Schwortz, the Jewish man who established shroud.com, is one of the best-known lecturers in the program. In 1978, he served as the technical photographer to the Shroud of Turin Research Project. In its final report, this elite team of scientists concluded that “the Shroud image is that of a real human form of a scourged, crucified man. It is not the product of an artist.”
The postgraduate certificate in Shroud Studies is ideal for anyone who is passionate about the new evangelization. It is open to lay people, consecrated men and women, priests, catechists, researchers, and anyone else who may want to gain a deeper understanding of the Shroud of Turin.
We do not simply observe; we venerate. Ours is a prayerful gaze. I would say more: it is letting yourself to be gazed upon. This face has closed eyes; it is the face of one who is deceased. Yet, mysteriously, he looks at us, and, in the silence, he speaks to us. How is it possible? Why do people of faith, like you, want to pause before this icon of a man scourged and crucified? Because the Man of the Shroud invites us to contemplate Jesus of Nazareth. This image—impressed on the cloth—speaks to our heart and urges us to climb the Mount of Calvary, to look at the wood of the Cross, to immerse ourselves in the eloquent silence of love.”
–Pope Francis, video message for the extraordinary exposition of the Shroud of Turin on March 30, 2013
To obtain the postgraduate certificate in Shroud Studies students must fulfill the following criteria:
- hold a bachelor’s degree or at least a three-year degree; complete the online courses and pass examinations; follow conferences by guest speakers;
- write a 25 to 30-page paper on a topic approved by the Scientific Committee and directed by one of the professors of the program.
- Therefore, 22 ECTS credits are required: 13 from the courses, 3 from the conferences, and 6 from the paper.
Auditing the Program Alternatively, students may audit the program. To do so, they are only required to complete the courses and conferences, after which they will receive a certificate of attendance.
Total cost: €480 (€ 200.00 registration and € 280.00, payable in two installments: € 140.00 at registration and € 140.00 by October 18, 2018).
One-time payment of € 280.00
How to Take Part in the Program
This program is available on the internet, through a dedicated link that will be provided to the students.
1st semester: February 21 to May 30, 2018
Exams: June 5 to 28, 2018
2nd semester: October 17, 2018, to January 16, 2019
Exams: January 21 to February 15, 2019
2018-2019 ACADEMIC PROGRAM
Introduction to Shroud Studies (2 ECTS) Bruno Barberis (International Center of Sindonology, Turin)
History of the Shroud (3 ECTS) Flavia Manservigi (International Center of Sindonology, Turin)
Pastoral and Biblical Approach to the Shroud (3 ECTS) Andrew Dalton, L.C. (Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum), and collaborators
Scientific Research on the Shroud; STURP: History and Results (3 ECTS) Barrie Schwortz (STERA, Inc.)
The Shroud and Archeological Studies (2 ECTS) Ada Grossi (Associazione Italiana dei Paleografi e Diplomatisti)
The Shroud and Science (3 ECTS) A series of conferences coordinated by Bruno Barberis Collaborators: Nello Balossino, Paolo Di Lazzaro, Rafael Pascual, Petrus Soons
For further information
Fr. Andrew Dalton, LC – firstname.lastname@example.org
Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum
Via degli Aldobrandeschi, 190
Tel.: +39 06 91689488