Science and Faith: Episode 7- Resurrection

Written by on 27/03/2021

Radio Maria England Science and Faith



Broadcast times: Sunday at 5pm, Wednesday at 2am, Thursday at 11am and Friday at 9pm.

The Nicene Creed reads “…For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures…”. Inspired by the Risen Christ, we planned episode seven of the Science and Faith series around the greatness of this Biblical event.


We invited Prof. Sir Colin Humphreys who told us about the astronomical, historical and theological research he does in his spare time which allowed him to revisit the dating of the events surrounding Jesus’ death and resurrection; in particular, The Last Supper. We felt very privileged as Prof. Humphreys shared with us a series of events from his professional career that he has never spoken about before. Despite the outstanding peer-reviews, he faced some opposition from within the journal Nature, where his paper was finally published in 1983, but not allowed on the front cover of the Journal.


Prof. Peter Wadhams and David Rolfe delighted us with an account of the historicity of The Shroud of Turin and how the scientific, as well as the Catholic, community received the initial evidence obtained from its study. We were able to discuss  various controversies associated with The Shroud and critically analyse whether any insight can be gained from this relic about the events of the Resurrection or even the glorious body of the Risen Christ. Finally, they updated us on current investigations and plans for the future.

If you were called to be involved in a research team with access to the shroud, and were able to take samples again, what questions would you want to answer? What experiments would you carry out?


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On the Saturday 3rd April 2021, there will be an extraordinary veneration of the Shroud in the Turin Cathedral, which will be broadcast live around the world on television and on social media platforms:


Prof. Colin Humphreys’ book: The Mystery of the Last Supper: Reconstructing the Final Days of Jesus-

Prof. Peter Wadhams’ book: A Farewell to Ice



Vatican Observatory Foundation:

Christians in Science:

Faraday Institute for Science and Religion:

Interactive Science and Faith workshops:

International Centre of Studies on the Shroud: 

The British Society for the Turin Shroud:



Fr. Robert Verrill–


Professor Sir Colin Humphreys CBE FRS FREng. Colin is Professor of Materials Science at Queen Mary University of London; Emeritus Professor at the University of Cambridge; Fellow of Selwyn College, Cambridge and Honorary Fellow of Churchill College, Cambridge. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society and a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering. He was knighted in 2010 for “services to science”. He founded the Cambridge Centre for Gallium Nitride and set up two spin-off companies to exploit the research of his group on low-cost LEDs for home and office lighting. The companies were acquired by Plessey, which is manufacturing LEDs and microLEDs based on this technology at their factory in Plymouth, UK. He founded the Cambridge/Rolls-Royce Centre for Advanced Materials for Aerospace. Materials developed in the Centre are now flying in Rolls-Royce engines. He recently set up a new company, Paragraf, to exploit the research of his group on graphene, which promises to revolutionise a wide range of products including sensors and electronic devices. Its first product is a Hall effect sensor for measuring magnetic fields. In his limited spare time, he writes on science and religion and is the author of Creation and Evolution (Oxford University Press, 1985), The Miracles of Exodus (Harper Collins, 2003), which has been translated into German and Portuguese and has an audio edition, and The Mystery of the Last Supper: Reconstructing the Final Days of Jesus. (Cambridge University Press, 2011), which has been translated into Russian, German, Portuguese, Japanese and Greek, and has a South Asian edition.


Professor Peter Wadhams is the UK’s most experienced sea ice scientist, having spent the past half century leading research programmes  on sea ice and ocean processes in the Arctic and the Antarctic. He recently retired as Professor of Ocean Physics at DAMTP, and before that was Director of the Scott Polar Research Institute. He is the author of numerous publications on sea ice, waves in ice, icebergs, ocean convection and similar topics.  His work on ice thickness, carried out largely from submarines, led him to discover the thinning of Arctic sea ice in 1990, and since then he has focused on climate change, why it is so rapid in the Arctic, and what we must do to save the world from its accelerating impacts. His book A Farewell to Ice (Allen Lane 2016; Oxford University Press NY, 2017) deals with this question of how Arctic change leads to global impacts. He has led 55 expeditions to polar seas, has been coordinator of several European Union research projects in the Arctic, and from 2004-2012 was on the Scientific Committee of the European Environment Agency. In 1990 he received the Italgas Prize for Environmental Sciences, and he has also been awarded the Polar Medal (UK) and the W.S. Bruce Prize of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. At present he is a Visiting Professor at Politecnico di Torino. His long-term association with Torino led to him being appointed by the Diocese of Turin to the Scientific Committee for the Holy Shroud, which assesses proposals from scientists to study the Shroud and passes on recommendations to the Holy See. He has lectured extensively on the Shroud and the evidence for its authenticity. 


Mr. David Rolfe is a producer/director, with an international career, winning a BAFTA and many other awards.  (The BAFTA was for The Silent Witness – an Investigation into the Shroud of Turin – 1978) He had 10 years with ITV  and, subsequently the BBC, RAI (Italy) and Discovery. He was responsible for major network programmes featuring leading figures from every walk of life including prime ministers and royalty.  (See his British Film Institute page here: As a partner at the Performance Group, he pioneered the development of management coaching through Performance Consultants and took the concept from start-up to major supplier.  During a sabbatical he invented, patented and put into production a revolutionary marine craft. (Search EzyBoat).  David is currently producing (2021/22) a new feature documentary on the Shroud of Turin due for release in April 2022.


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