The owner of the shroud, Geoffroi de Charny, was born in 1306 and died in 1356. He was one of the most respected knights in France and was the author of the Book of Chivalry.
His life and writings reflected a high moral standard.
If Charny emphasizes the high moral standard expected of “great men,” his ideal monarch has an even higher caliber of morality to attain. In a section full of repetitive parallelisms, Charny argues that the ancestors of contemporary rulers were chosen from among the people, not for a life of ease and corruption, but for service, nobility, and piety.
In 1353, he founded a small church in Lirey.
“In 1353, just three years before his death, Geoffroi de Charny had founded a collegiate church at his tiny fief of Lirey near Troyes.”
At the time of his death, the TS started to be displayed in that church.
“Yet according to a bishop of Troyes writing in 1390 a cloth bearing imprints claimed as authentically from Christ’s crucified body was being displayed there ‘circa’ three years later, i.e. sometime around 1356.”
“Whatever the circumstances that had prompted the showings, they had evidently been held shortly after Charny’s 1356 death rather than before it.”
His bishop at that time was Henri de Poitiers. He started his position in 1353 and died in 1370.
His successor was Bishop Jean de Braque. He died in 1375.
His successor was Bishop Pierre de Villiers. He died in 1377.
His successor was Bishop Pierre d’Arcis. He died in 1395.
The D’Arcis memo was written around 1389, which is around 33 years after the shroud was first put on display in Lirey. If it was so important to expose the shroud as a fake, why did it take so long and why are there no textual records from the three preceding bishops on the shroud being a forgery?
If the artist had confessed to creating the TS, who did he confess to? Did he feel guilty after 33 years to creating the forgery and admitted his guilt to D’Arcis? Or did D’Arcis somehow know who the artist was and tracked him down to confess? How did he suspect it was artwork and a forgery while the three preceding bishops either thought it was real or didn’t seem to care?
If the memo is legit, the most likely motivation for trying to get the Pope to declare the TS a fraud was not for noble purposes, but more likely to shut down competition of pilgrims visiting the Lirey church with a compelling relic.
Again, it was expected for all churches to have a relic. It makes no sense for a bishop to complain to the Pope about a relic being fake in a small church in a backwoods town 33 years after it started to be displayed.