My mind goes back a year, to Turin where I had gone with my husband to see the shroud. Exposed usually only once or twice a century, it wasn’t due an airing until 2025 but the Bishop of Turin had asked Benedict XVI for permission to put the shroud on display in 2010 and the Holy Father agreed!
We flew to the city, duly got our tickets and queued to view. Having seen pictures in books I was not really prepared for the clarity of the image. A few moments close to the burial cloth of Jesus - so moving, so intimate, but so little time available. Happily the following day at an early morning Mass in the Cathedral we were given a longer and unexpected opportunity, before Mass began, to go once again up to the shroud and venerate its Holy image. The wounds of the Passion and the horrors of crucifixion there to see, the trickles of blood, the marks of the scourging and the nails, the cap of thorns, the heart pierced through for our sins. What better way to begin Passiontide than by meditating on this evidence of Jesus’ suffering.