Skip to comments.Vatican archaeologists unearth St. Paul's tomb
Posted on 12/06/2006 6:18:21 AM PST by NYer
Vatican archaeologists have unearthed a sarcophagus believed to contain the remains of the Apostle Paul that had been buried beneath Rome's second largest basilica. The sarcophagus, which dates back to at least 390 A.D., has been the subject of an extended excavation that began in 2002 and was completed last month, the project's head said this week.
"Our objective was to bring the remains of the tomb back to light for devotional reasons, so that it could be venerated and be visible," said Giorgio Filippi, the Vatican archaeologist who headed the project at St. Paul Outside the Walls basilica.
The interior of the sarcophagus has not yet been explored, but Filippi didn't rule out the possibility of doing so in the future.
Two ancient churches that once stood at the site of the current basilica were successively built over the spot where tradition said the saint had been buried. The second church, built by the Roman emperor Theodosius in the fourth century, left the tomb visible, first above ground and later in a crypt.
When a fire destroyed the church in 1823, the current basilica was built and the ancient crypt was filled with earth and covered by a new altar.
"We were always certain that the tomb had to be there beneath the papal altar," Filippi told The Associated Press in a telephone interview.
Filippi said that the decision to make the sarcophagus visible again was taken after many pilgrims who came to Rome during the Catholic Church's 2000 Jubilee year expressed disappointment at finding that the saint's tomb could not be visited or touched.
The findings of the project will be officially presented during a news conference at the Vatican on Monday.
Interesting. Why didn't the wedding party at Cana approach the Lord instead of relying on Mary to intercede on their behalf? And why didn't Jesus take the opportunity to scold them for such an insulting act? Instead, He performs the first miracle of His ministry on their behalf. How odd.
LOL, that's true. I was particularly thinking of the post-Pentecost Christian church.
So if you say "I am the way, the truth and the light", it's ok because when you say "I", you mean Jesus? Bill Clinton's definition of the word "is" has nothing on you... :)
We do. I'm especially fond of St. Michael.[you]
I think one can make a fair case that praying to is not the same as worshiping...but Paul had a reason for saying: "Do not let anyone who delights in...the worship of angels disqualify you for the prize. Such a person goes into great detail about what he has seen, and his unspiritual mind puffs him up with idle notions. He has lost connection with the Head..." (Col. 2:18-19)
I guess if I was to put a ribbon on this whole discussion it would be that seven-word phrase Paul opens in Col. 2:19: "He has lost connection with the Head [Jesus, being the Head of the Body]."
People who pray to other-dimensionly saints keep wanting to pray to the knee instead of the Head. Yes, the knee is a well-recognized posture of prayer. And some "knees" in heaven have been very good at gaining God's ear.
But the knee was never meant to substitute for the Head. I have to wonder about people who when talking to me never look me in the eye, but stare at my feet (or my knees). Yes, I hear what they're saying, but it's not very respectful.
Worse yet, I can't help wonder if some of the alleged saints being prayed to aren't even present in heaven. God doesn't grade heavenly entrance on a curb. It's pass-fail, based upon faith in Christ. There's an awful lot of good-works oriented Pharisees who based upon Jesus' harsh words to them ("making others twice the son of hell" for example) make me think they're just not where they thought they would wind up.
So, that being the case...you've got folks who aren't praying to even "the knee" but rather are praying to other rather delicate parts of the body. :) And if just a smigling of those saints are in actuality in hell, well, there goes the proximity argument.
Ok so. No one said any of those things were bad. What point were you trying to make?
Actually, you did. You claim that ANY conversation with dead people is the sin of necromancy. Jesus spoke with dead people. Therefore, by YOUR understanding, He sinned.
However, it's important to keep in mind that a great deal of the information that anti-Catholics rely upon DOES COME FROM COMIC BOOKS!
You obviously didn't understand what I said, and I don't know how to state it any more clearly, so I'm not going to waste my time.
Your entire contention seems to be that the Lord was free to sin while He was among us.
Then why do you ever ask anyone to pray for you?
Again, another argument which cuts against intercessory prayer in general.
Do you have that doubt about the accuracy of the NT canon? It is the same Church that canonizes saints and Scripture.
I haven't read the whole thread, because it has, quite predictably for FR, become yet another Catholic bash, a venerable tradition here. So it's possible someone may have already mentioned this, in which case I apologize for the inadvertent repetition. But the efficacy of Pauline relics in particular is attested to by Scripture, which buttresses your position that their use dates to apostolic times. Viz., Acts 19:11-12:
And God wrought by the hand of Paul more than common miracles. So that even there were brought from his body to the sick, handkerchiefs and aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the wicked spirits went out of them.
the "handkerchiefs and aprons" being, of course, relics of St. Paul.
You should. The intent is plainly a divinisation of Washington. That's what "apotheosis" means. Borrowing on the artistic/literary conventions of the ancients (much in vogue in the Greek Revival period that coincided with the Capitol's construction) Old George is being proposed to us as the Hero who's been promoted to more-than-mortal status.
Also disturbing to the artistically sensitive is the Capitol dome itself. To the pagan Romans, the dome represents the sky, the universe. This architectural convention was later adopted by Christians, for buildings devoted to divine worship. Is it possible that Latrobe didn't know that domed buildings speak of things both divine and universal? The subliminal message is that the American government is something divinely ordained with a universal mandate -- if not a holy thing in itself. This is not at all a republican idea -- and it didn't use to be Republican either.
President Reagan engaged in the same misappropriation of religious imagery when he spoke of the USA as a "shining city on a hill", a figure that has its origins in Holy Scripture and rightly refers to the Church.
Which saints would you be referring to?
No, I'm really "hung up" on the bad news/good news. The law condemns you (the bad news). The cross of Christ and the forgiveness there saves you (the good news). 'Tis would be great if that's what our newspapers published. But it's not often found there.
Why? Because us latter-day saints don't flesh that out very well in our daily lives.
But, that doesn't mean we aren't doing something well. I've seen some very good media acquisition on the part of the RC church (along w/the rest of the Church-at-large). If Christians can't "break thru" media walls, it's always purchased time--like radio time.
So when you evaluate the church-at-large--and the church is larger than the institutional church (thank God in light of the priest scandals), you also have to evaluate what it does with this "purchased time." And if that's the case, then for every priestly word spoken over the air, we can also look at every lay word spoken thru an ad.
Every day, we all have a choice of what we want to witness to: Some of us witness to the weather changes; others to Notre Dame & Boston College & other sports teams; others to saintly communication; others to Jesus Christ himself.
The authoritative teaching of the Church isn't found in newspaper ads.
I really don't want to discuss the priest scandals at all. But if you're going to tell me this, I suppose next you'll tell me that the authoritiative teaching is found in the 2 or 3 diocese locations (like Phoenix) where it's gone bankrupt due to these scandals. In my opinion, I see the RC much larger than the institutional church...God has been doing great things at the grassroots level.
hahaha.. yeah, you ought to read about him too, very remarkable man.
And don't worry, if you read about him it won't take anything away from Jesus, in fact, I think it will make you love Our Lord more.
Does me anyway.
Good God, you have this broken record one track mind. Give it up!!!! No, I have NEVER, EVER stated or implied that Jesus sinned. What I have said (with examples that kids in Sunday School would understand) is that He did certain things LIKE speaking with Moses and Elijah during the transfiguration, saying "I am the Son of God", etc, etc. that were OK for Him BECAUSE He was God. But that does not make it OK for YOU to do the exact same thing. If you can't understand the basic concept that YOU can not do everything that God does, then don't bother responding.
Then why are you?
But if you're going to tell me this, I suppose next you'll tell me that the authoritiative teaching is found in the 2 or 3 diocese locations (like Phoenix) where it's gone bankrupt due to these scandals.
Last time I checked, it was found in the teaching documents of the councils and papal ex-cathedra pronouncements. You might also try looking at the lives of the great saints.
I have no idea why you're bringing up the scandal of bad priests. There are sinners and fools among the clergy of every denomination and every church. There were bad priests among the ancient Israelites, too. (Do you really want a tour through the OT?)
You do understand the difference between having multiple people pray to God, rather than you praying to multiple people?