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On Friday, July 5, 2013, Pope Francis cleared two of the 20th Century’s most influential popes to become saints. To canonize, or officially declare a deceased individual as a saint, is almost an impossible feat and took the waiver of some Vatican rules in order to honor Pope John XXIII.
Pope Francis decided that John XXIII should be declared a saint even though the Vatican has not confirmed a second miracle that could be attributed to his intercession. The Vatican agreed and stated that Francis has the power to dispense with such requirements and proceed with the process.
The ceremony is expected to be held before the end of the year, although a rumored date of December 8 has been circulating. This date is most associated with the feast of the Immaculate Conception, also known as a major feast day for the church.
Read more at AP.org
On Monday, June 17, investigators, a tipster and several onlookers were all optimistic as the FBI led a search for Jimmy Hoffa’s body in a field lined with yellow caution tape and TV news vans in the rural Oakland Township, Michigan. But their enthusiasm was “tempered, given that it is the latest in a series of digs since the Teamsters boss went missing, setting off one of the 20th century’s most vexing mysteries”. Back in January, Tony Zerilli, 85, the son of reputed former Detroit mob boss Joseph Zerilli, told broadcast media that Hoffa, 62, was buried there. Zerilli also claims Hoffa was struck with a shovel and then buried alive on the property, with a slab of concrete placed over the body.
Hoffa was kidnapped on the afternoon of July 30, 1975, from the parking lot of the formerly known Machus Red Fox restaurant in Bloomfield Township, Michigan. Zerilli was in jail when Hoffa disappeared but described himself as a good friend of Hoffa’s. He said he learned about the disappearance from the “inner circle” of the Detroit mafia. Sources at the scene in question said investigators were searching a concentrated area there. They also witnessed tents were set up in the middle of the property, at least 500 feet off the dirt road.
The FBI theorized Hoffa disappeared after going to the restaurant for a reconciliation meeting with Anthony (Tony Pro) Provenzano, a mob-connected New Jersey Teamster official, and Anthony (Tony Jack) Giacalone, a Detroit Mafia captain. The FBI thought Provenzano and Giacalone had Hoffa killed to prevent him from regaining the Teamsters presidency, ending the mob’s influence over the union and its easy access to Teamster pension funds.
Read more at USA TODAY
No human remains were found during three days of excavation on the one-acre parcel.
Experts are now saying that Allosaurus likely devoured its prey in a manner not dissimilar from that of modern-day falcons.
The iconic Tyrannosaurus rex is believed to have handled its prey like an alligator, by jerking it from side-to-side in its powerful jaws. Computer-generated simulations are now indicating that T. rex’s Jurassic cousin, Allosaurus preferred to strip flesh from bone with bird-like tugging motions.
Headed by Ohio University paleontologist Eric Snively, a team of experts in biomechanics, computer visualization, and dinosaur anatomy were able to generate models that provided them with insight into the eating mechanics of this prehistoric beast. Allosaurus’ muscle placement and bone structure echoed characteristics of modern predatory birds that are essential to how they kill and eat.
The Ohio University team plans to apply their method to additional dinosaurs in order to learn more about their feeding habits.
The only King buried in the United States has been returned to Europe.
The remains of King Peter II of Yugoslavia has been removed from the Chicago suburb where they’ve been resting for the last 40 years.
The remains arrived in Belgrade, Serbia on Jan. 22, much to the delight of Crown Prince Alexander, who has wanted to bring his father home for years.
Peter II took the throne in 1934, when he was 11, after his father’s assassination. He tried to hold back the Nazis during his reign, but was forced to flee the country after his government surrendered. He died at 47 in Denver, and was unable to be buried in his then-communist country. Peter II selected a Serbian Orthodox monastery in Libertyville for his tomb, where he stayed until now.
A formal state funeral will be held in Belgrade in May.
British scientists have confirmed through DNA results that the human remains found under a parking lot in Leicester five months are those of King Richard III.
“We’re certain now, as certain as you can be of anything in life,” said Richard Taylor, the University of Leicester registrar who coordinated the team of archaeologists, historians, genealogists and geneticists who set out to identify the remains.
King Richard III is one of the most reviled monarchs in history. He’s infamous for his scheming, murders, and physical deformity. Most people know of his two year reign through Shakespeare’s play. Richard was killed at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485 by two severe blows to the head. He was 33.
Richard, who suffered curvature of the spine, was also buried with his hands tied.
The DNA tests that were conducted on the skeleton mostly came from Michael Ibsen, a Canadian who is a direct descendent of Richard’s sister Anne of York.
Next for Richard will be a reburial, this time at Leicester Cathedral, early in 2014.
Earlier this week, the National Christmas Tree was lit by the first family following a 90 year holiday tradition. The president led the crowd of 17,000 by saying, “In times of war and peace, triumph and tragedy, we’ve always come together to rejoice in the Christmas miracle”.
The giant blue spruce that is now illuminated in bright green lights and ornaments is the third National Christmas Tree. The long-standing tree was knocked down by a storm in the previous year. It was quickly replaced, but that tree did not last. President Obama joked, “It just goes to show, nobody’s job is safe here in Washington,” “But I feel good about this one. It was planted just days before Hurricane Sandy, and it made it through the storm in one piece.”
A tribute was held to honor those who were affected by Hurricane Sandy. There were performances by Jason Mraz, James Taylor, Colbie Caillat, The Fray and many others.
Read more at ABC News
An elderly woman’s restoration attempt has ruined a 19th Century Fresco.
The one-of-a-kind 19th century fresco, entitled “Ecce Homo,” by the Spanish painter Elias Garcia Martinez has since been ruined.
The elderly woman is a member of the Santuario de Misericodia church in Borja, located in northeastern Spain. Her restoration attempt was discovered when the painter’s granddaughter donated the work to a religious paintings archive in Borja.
When center officials went to examine the work a couple weeks ago, they were all shocked to see how it now looked.
The last photo of the painting, prior to the damage, was taken in 2010, and showed the face of Jesus. The latest photo, taken in July, shows a painting with missing details.
The church and center have stated that the restoration attempt by the woman, who is in her 80s, was not one of malice, but rather she was just misguided.
Now both entities are attempting to assess the damage of the paiting and determine whether Martinez’s work can be restored.