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Christians mark 500 years of ‘Holy Robe’ pilgrimage

TRIER, Germany (RNS/ENInews) Thousands of pilgrims are celebrating 500 years of the Pilgrimage of the Holy Robe, which centers on a sacred relic. Once the cause of conflict between Christians, the pilgrimage now is seen as an opportunity to promote unity. “In the modern world, religions have to work together,” said Bernhard Fresacher, a theologian working with the Catholic diocese of Trier. “In 2012, we are opening the ecumenical horizon to include many churches because we believe that the existence of Christianity today is only possible with an ecumenical spirit.” The Holy Robe, believed by some to have been the seamless garment worn by Jesus Christ shortly before his crucifixion, is usually kept out of public view in a reliquary at Trier Cathedral.