The Pope has taken a break from the abuse scandals engulfing the Catholic church to visit the Turin Shroud.
Benedict received a rapturous welcome in the northern Italian city as he arrived in his iconic bullet proof buggy.
The Papal visit is a bit of a respite from meetings with Bishops to discuss resignations within the Church’s ranks.
But the shroud, thought by some to be the burial cloth of Jesus, is not without its own controversies.
The Vatican neither confirms or denies its authenticity, preferring instead to call it a powerful symbol of Christ’s suffering.
Kept in a climate controlled case, some experts say carbon dating proves the linen was made in the 13th or 14 century and is a medieval fake – but other researchers contest that, saying it was used to wrap the body of Jesus following his crucifixion.
The shroud has gone on public for the first time since 2000 and a restoration in 2002.