Relics of Christ’s Passion For Sale on eBay

April 7, 2007

ICHR Calls for eBay Community to Engage in Good Friday ‘Cyber Protest’ Over Offensive Sales
LOS ANGELES, Apr. 4 /Christian Newswire/ — After nearly a decade of battling eBay over the sale of sacred relics, the International Crusade for Holy Relics (ICHR) is calling on members of the online auction house’s community to take a stand against the sale of the sacred by staging a cyber protest on Good Friday.

“As the world prepares to celebrate the mystery of the death of Christ, there are some who would rather sell him out, again, like Judas,” said Tom Serafin, founder and president of the ICHR.

For years, the ICHR has lobbied eBay to stop the sale of relics and enforce its own rules barring the sale of body parts and a ban on the sale of offensive materials but to no avail. So this year the group is calling for members of eBay’s online community to stage a Good Friday cyber protest by sending emails this Friday registering their dissatisfaction with the online auction giant.

This week several relics for sale on the site purport to be pieces of Christ’s cross, the crown of thorns, and even his hair (though that ad seems to be mislabeled). A search of eBay at any given time will reveal dozens of relics – often purporting to be the relics of Christ’s passion or the bones of the saints – for sale.

The sale of relics is a direct affront to Catholics and other Christians, for whom relics are considered sacred, priceless and spiritual heirlooms. The sale is expressly forbidden by the Canon Law of the Catholic Church. Moreover, many of the relics being sold are of dubious origin, and some have been shown to be outright frauds.

“Judas sold out Christ for a given price,” Serafin said, “but today’s e-Judases sell His relics to the highest bidder.”

“Our heritage and our faith are not for sale. We have decided that the eBay community must protest, this has become the only option to prevent the repugnant practice of selling our spiritual patrimony.”

ICHR is a coalition with members worldwide that includes members of many denominations including the Catholic, Orthodox, and Anglican faiths. It is devoted to stopping the sale of first class relics online, preserving relics, and educating the public about relics and the saints. The group has recently secured the assistance of several government officials in attempting to stop such sales.

To engage in the cyber-protest eBay members should call eBay at 800-322-9266 or email rswebhelp@ebay.com

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