The painting, which has been missing for 150 years, was based on the “Veil of Veronica” — according to legend, a sweat cloth that a Jesus groupie dabbed upon his face right before his crucifixion, imprinting his likeness into it and imbuing it with magical powers. It’s therefore thought to bean actual painting of Jesus Christ’s face.
And how did it turn up? A woman named Kelly Ghormley (pictured, upper right) burgled Frosty’s home; when she discovered the painting among the goods she’d made off with, she tried to pawn it off to a nearby church. The church instantly recognized that it might be a work of some significance, and it was. So significant, in fact, it was blessed by Pope Leo XIII, who reigned from 1878 to 1903.
So here’s the question: What kind of finder’s fee does the Vatican pay out to 77-year-old trailer park residents who’ve been keeping priceless religious relics safe for them for a century-and-a-half?
- Great Finds: A priceless portrait of Jesus – blessed by… (curbed.com)
- The priceless treasure in a jar of clay (churchinaction.wordpress.com)
- The Tennessee Trailer and the Priceless Painting (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)