By Dr. Jimmy Braswell
Chaplain, Home Hospice of Odessa
“Behold the Man.” – John 19:5
Recently an article was published in the Odessa American about the Shroud of Turin. I discovered the subject while in high school here in Odessa in the 70’s.
In college I was challenged by a Bible professor to prove it a fake for a grade change. I could not with the evidence available then. Instead, the professor made a statement that inspired a life-long study — “The Shroud of Turin is probably the most important archeological find ever ignored.”
Eventually in Amarillo, I became a charter member of what came to be known as “the Man In the Shroud Committee,” a tri-state objective study committee on the Shroud.
Eventually we commissioned and purchased a $10,000 exact photographic replica of the Shroud. That life-size photograph and an enhanced photo display was brought to Odessa several times and displayed in the mall. I gave several lectures there with people traveling as far as from Mexico to see it.
That display is now permanently at the exhibit in Groom, Texas. The Center there now boasts over a 20-year period — a 90-foot cross that can be seen lighted at night 20 miles away on I-40. There are replicas of Calvary’s Crosses, the Empty Tomb, life-size statues of the 14 stations of the cross along with other statuary, a large bookstore and gift shop (with bathrooms, finally!), a garden, a lecture hall, banquet hall and good parking.
The Center is a great weekend trip 40 miles east of Amarillo on I-40. A suggested great trip would include an overnight stay in Amarillo (Groom’s little) and day trip to the Center. It is free and open to the public. In the building built exclusively for our display, are videos of television specials created to educate about the Shroud. This Center is one of several around the country. The largest is in Atlanta, Georgia. Go see and enjoy a worshipful experience!