Bill Snyder, founder of Patchwork Heart Ministry, works on a new documentary about The Man of the Shroud traveling exhibit. The documentary, which will be filmed this week at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Milwaukee, is titled “Who Do You Say I Am?” (Photo by Anne Trautner)
The Shroud of Turin is a linen cloth that many believe is the burial cloth of Jesus of Nazareth.
The 14-foot-long linen cloth bears the image of a man who appears to have been scourged and crucified. The shroud, which is kept in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Turin, Italy, has become one of the most scientifically studied religious icons in the world.
After decades of exhaustive medical, historical and scientific research, the Center for the Study of the Passion of the Christ and the Holy Shroud has developed a traveling exhibit that features a full-length canvas replica of the shroud. The exhibit also contains 31 display panels detailing the research that has been done on the shroud.
The Man of the Shroud traveling exhibit will be on display this week at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, 1937 N. Vel R. Phillips Ave., Milwaukee. The exhibit will be open to the public, free of charge, at the following times: Thursday, Feb. 24, 5-8 p.m.; Friday, Feb. 25, 5-8 p.m.; Saturday, Feb. 26, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Sunday, Feb. 27, noon to 7 p.m.
“It is an amazing exhibit and very moving to see. I hope people will come out to view it,” said Bill Snyder, founder of Patchwork Heart Ministry, which is partnering with Fiat Ministry Network to bring the exhibit to Milwaukee.
While the exhibit is at the Milwaukee church, it will be chronicled in a documentary titled “Who Do You Say I Am?”
The documentary project has been in the works for the past three years.
Snyder does a lot of online programming with Kent Kuholski, founder of Fiat Ministry Network, which is based in Ohio. Together, they have produced various television shows and audio podcasts.
“We had been talking about different ideas and working with different people, and he mentioned he had a good contact from the Shroud Center in Richmond, Virginia,” Snyder said.
So, the two had a conversation with Bryan Walsh, director of the Shroud Center. Walsh was interested in having his research chronicled.
Meanwhile, Snyder had a good connection with Marytown, the National Shrine of St. Maximilian Kolbe, in Illinois, which houses the traveling exhibit of the Shroud of Turin.
“I made a phone call down there and asked if they would be willing to let us come and film the shroud exhibit because we are not going to be able to get access to film the actual shroud in Italy. They suggested that we hold an event and have the exhibit at my parish,” Snyder said.
So, Snyder asked his pastor, Fr. Michael Bertram, if the exhibit could be displayed in the parish center at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Milwaukee. Fr. Bertram happily agreed.
Members of the St. Francis of Assisi parish can now get a firsthand experience with the exhibit as they help with the event. This includes members of the confirmation class, who will be on hand all weekend to help direct visitors through the exhibit.
The exhibit will be open to the public. Visitors also will be invited to take part in the documentary, but no one will be filmed without their written consent.
“We want to ask people what they think of the exhibit,” Snyder said. “And we want to ask them: Who do you say Jesus is to you?”
All filming will be done in a separate room, so no one will be videotaped without their consent.
“We thought this was a good opportunity to ask people what they think about Jesus. Really, Bryan Walsh’s whole mission is to help people understand and ask the question that Jesus asked: Who do you say I am?” Snyder explained. “I can present to you all the science in the world, but who do you say I am?”
The documentary also will include testimony from Walsh and other experts from across the country.
“We were hoping Bryan was going to be able to travel here and actually present to people in Milwaukee, but with coronavirus and everything going on, he is unable to travel, so we are going to have to go to him. We will have to save that for the final video recording,” Snyder said.
Other documentaries have been done on the shroud. But none have asked that question.
“They present all the science; they do all this stuff,” Snyder stated. “But they never finish the story. Who is this guy? And who do you say he is?”
Church visitors are asked to comply with the city of Milwaukee’s mask mandate. For more information about the Man of the Shroud exhibit and “Who Do You Say I Am?” documentary, email email@example.com.