College Mystery Tour

Shroud Encounter

SHROUD ENCOUNTER is a program that explores in fascinating detail a mysterious linen cloth known as The Shroud of Turin. It has been the centerpiece of Turin, Italy for centuries. Some call it a hoax while others call it the greatest of all archaeological artifacts. One thing is for sure…despite thousands of hours of scientific analysis, it remains one of world’s greatest unsolved mysteries.

Contact Russ Breault: (678) 817 – 7188

Links to Important Information

Faculty Alert
UNC Charlotte did it right. Watch this short video
Other College Events
Russ on Good Morning America
Johns Hopkins — Baltimore Sun Front Page Article

The Day the Shroud Foiled Hitler

In 1938, Hitler visited Italy for a week and his trip included Turin. His henchmen began asking questions about the King’s prized relic, the Shroud of Turin. When Hitler invaded Poland the next year, the Shroud was secretly moved to a monastery south of Rome. In 1943, the Nazis came looking for the Shroud…first in Turin and then later at the monastery. They never found their prize.

Russ Breault documents this chapter of history and how Hitler first obtained the Spear of Destiny kept in Austria. Hitler and Himmler also searched for the Holy Grail but to no avail. What drove their obsession? This intriguing new big screen presentation from Shroud Encounter tells the story.

Watch the Promo Video

Can Science and Faith Ever Meet?

The Shroud of Turin is the most analyzed artifact in the world yet remains a mystery. Is it the burial cloth of Jesus or nothing more than a medieval hoax?  Shroud Encounter is a highly acclaimed exploration into this profound mystery and covers all aspects of investigation.

  • Science: Includes a discussion of the Shroud of Turin Research Project, a team of almost 40 scientists and the results of their hands-on analysis.
  • History: Where does the historical trail lead?  Was the cloth in Constantinople in 1204 and stolen during the 4th Crusade?  Were the Knights Templar involved? And more…
  • Art: What are medieval art techniques and do they line up with modern chemical analysis of pigments and paint mediums?
  • Religion: What are Jewish burial practices?  How is the shroud referenced in Scripture?  What is the role of the Shroud in Byzantine iconography?


It is not very often a topic covers so many different academic disciplines. Shroud Encounter is a fast moving presentation and unfolds like a CSI investigation as clues from every area are examined to unravel this profound mystery.  No definitive conclusion can yet be determined. 

Art, Icon or Relic?

The Role of Art in Exploring and Revealing an Ancient Mystery

Is the famous Shroud of Turin the work of a medieval artist?  Is it a religious icon or is it a relic of an historical event?  No one knows for sure.  Explore the mystery from the rich realm of art.
This comprehensive presentation will look at:

  • Art as historical depiction
  • Art copies of the original
  • Influence of the Shroud on Byzantine art
  • Comparison of art during the middle ages
  • Mechanics of art such as style, technique, substances and process.

Program will make use of over 200 images.

Excellent Program To Promote

Cultural and Spiritual Diversity

DIVERSITY: No claim is made regarding authenticity. The Shroud can never be proven by science. It is a mystery in the same category as the Pyramids, Stonehenge or Easter Island. As colleges attempt to embrace all spiritual traditions, The Shroud of Turin is an excellent vehicle to represent a centuries-old religious tradition without endorsing it. It is a unique program to facilitate cultural or spiritual diversity.
RUSS BREAULT is an international lecturer and researcher and is President of the Shroud of Turin Education Project inc. and a member of the International Shroud Science Group. Mr. Breault has been featured in numerous national documentaries including Mysteries of the Ancient World, as seen on CBS, and a recent two-hour documentary on The History Channel. Russ Breault’s presentation has intrigued audiences nationwide for over 30 years, including Duke, West Point, Auburn, SUNY, Penn College of Technology and many more.
FEES: Fees are reasonable and will accomodate most budgets.
RAVE REVIEWS! See REFERENCES for dozens of outstanding comments.

Shroud Encounter is a fully Multi-Disciplinary Program drawing on science, history, art and religion to unravel the clues. In the end, no one can say for sure whether the Shroud is the authentic burial cloth of Jesus or an incredible medieval hoax.

The presentation is well suited for International Programs. The Shroud has been in Italy for nearly 500 years and was on public exhibit in 2015 drawing over two million visitors to Turin from around the world.

It works well with Multi-Cultural Programs. The history of the cloth tracks through Italy, France and Constantinople influencing both eastern and western European culture.

It is an excellent vehicle to promote Spiritual Diversity on campus. Shroud Encounter is not an endorsement of Christianity but simply an investigation of a centuries-old tradition related to it.
The educational focus is well suited for faculty to assign extra credit for those who attend.

Shroud Encounter is designed to entertain. It makes use of 200 images and moves fast like a movie holding the attention of the audience to the very end.

College Approach

The Shroud of Turin is an intriguing and stimulating subject for college audiences. Yes the Shroud has religious implications, but so do the Dead Sea Scrolls and most every archaeological discovery made in Israel. They are fascinating artifacts and can be studied objectively without becoming an overt platform for the Christian faith.

Who can argue that Jesus was the most prominent figure in history and was responsible for reshaping the ancient world? Yet because of inordinate fears of church and state separation, he is barely a footnote in today’s public schools and state universities. By learning about the Shroud, students are exposed to an intriguing presentation of the historical Jesus and are also drawn into an array of disciplines that have been employed over the years to unravel the Shroud’s great mystery.

Numerous avenues of scientific and historical research…

Optical sciences, chemistry, particle analysis, blood chemistry, medical forensics, physics, botany, numismatics, archaeology, carbon dating, and other disciplines are involved in revealing the Shroud’s many secrets. Is the Shroud just a clever painting? What is the cause of the image? What are the chemical components of the blood stains? Could the image be that of a real human being?

History also provides clues derived from ancient art techniques, the role of icons in ancient Christianity, textile analysis, Jewish burial practices, and the Roman use of crucifixion. Could the Shroud have a first century origin? What do these avenues of research indicate?

An Academic Mosaic

When in history did the idea of an image on linen originate? What caused icon images to become so prominent within ancient Byzantine Christianity? What is the “Image Not Made By Human Hands” discovered in the sixth century? Could it be related to the Shroud? Do ancient legends and folklore offer any clues? Are there ancient liturgical references? Is there a link to the Fourth Crusade and the Knights Templar?

There are few subjects that span such a diversity of disciplines all focused on one artifact. Learning about the Shroud exposes the audience to 100 years of scientific and medical inquiry. It demonstrates the investigative role of science as well as it’s limitations. Shroud Encounter connects the student to past events, people and cultures that have shaped our world today and brings perspective to the role of religion in previous centuries, the roots of which run deep in Western Civilization. The rise of modern secularism cannot alter the historical role of religion and should be included in what every student learns as part of a well rounded education.