Reliquary

Even if an object is not genuinely what believers profess it to be. . . . it becomes the locus of belief for centuries.  And it is in this belief that faith is made.  For the faithful, to pray to a relic displayed in its reliquary – even to a blackened and shriveled tongue – is like shining sunlight through a magnifying glass.  A relic concentrates the beliefs surrounding it until they can be seen: it is a faith so intense it has, at times, set the world on fire.  – Peter Manseau, Rag and Bone, p. 10

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