Vatican may open Saint's tomb
By Philip Pullella
Vatican City - The Vatican said on Monday it was studying the possibility of opening a thick marble sarcophagus believed to contain the remains of the 1st century apostle St Paul to study its contents.The Vatican news service has a full report in Italian here:
The prospect was raised at a news conference at which Vatican officials unveiled the results of an archaeological dig which has made part of the sarcophagus in Rome's Basilica of St Paul's Outside the Walls visible to pilgrims.
"We tried to X-ray it to see what was inside but the stone was too thick," said Cardinal Andrea Cordero Lanza di Montezemolo, archpriest of the basilica on Rome's outskirts . . . .
. . . . Montezemolo belittled some media reports that the apostle's tomb had only now been discovered.
"There has been no doubt for the past 20 centuries that the tomb is there. It was variously visible and not visible in times past and then it was covered up. We made an opening (in the basilica floor) to make it visible at least in part," he said . . . .
CONFERENZA STAMPA DI PRESENTAZIONE DEI LAVORI CHE HANNO RIPORTATO ALLA LUCE IL SARCOFAGO DI SAN PAOLO, NELLA BASILICA DI SAN PAOLO FUORI LE MURA , 11.12.2006