Saturday, October 10, 2009

Holy Prepuce

The Holy Prepuce (or Holy Foreskin) is one of the various relics purported to be associated with Jesus Christ. Orthodox Christian belief has it that Jesus ascended bodily into Heaven at the end of his earthly life. This would mean that Jesus's foreskin (removed at his circumcision) would be one of the few physical remainders of Jesus left behind on Earth. At various points in history, a number of churches in Europe have claimed to possess it, sometimes concurrently. Various miraculous powers have been ascribed to it. The abbey of Charroux claimed to possess the Holy Foreskin during the Middle Ages. It was said to have been presented to the monks by none other than Charlemagne, who in turn is said to have claimed (per the legend) that it had been brought to him by an angel. Other claimants at various points in time have included (at least) the Cathedral of Le Puy en Velay, Santiago de Compostela, the city of Antwerp, and churches in Besançon, Metz, Hildesheim, and Calcata.

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