Holy relics and celebrity mementos put heaven within reach

Attachment to a notable place, person or item has been at the heart of religious and spiritual belief for millennia. While today it is largely celebrity ‘totemic’ objects that capture such attention, in the past, virtually every church possessed a corpse, either intact, or just a fragment of bone, hair or flesh believed to be powerfully active. These ‘relics’ had the power to draw a community together in a sanctified whole and attract visitors from afar. But how and why?

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