By Mark Ellis, Special to ASSIST News Service
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (ANS – June 22, 2015) — Scientists in Sweden were astounded to find the body of a small baby beneath the feet of a mummified bishop who died in the 17th century.
A CT scan of the exceptionally-well preserved remains of Bishop of Lund, Peder Winstrup, revealed a six-month-old fetus beneath his feet in his coffin, according to a story by Christian Today.
The baby may not be related to the bishop but may be that of a woman who lost the child through miscarriage, Per Karsten, director of the Lund University museum told Christian Today.
At that time, there was no baptism for miscarried babies. It was thought that their souls were lost for eternity and could never enter heaven.
In the five weeks between the bishop’s death and his funeral, the mother might have bribed a church official to bury her lost baby with the bishop, with the thought that this would ensure his or her entrance to heaven, it was theorized.
Winstrup’s body is one of the best preserved from that time period, with all his organs intact. Scientists are studying his remains to provide facts about the conditions of people in that area during the 17th century, according to Christian Today.
Winstrup (1605-1679) was inaugurated as Bishop of Lund in 1638, which at that time was still Danish.
“He was a skilled navigator in the political landscape and was able to retain his position after the violent transition of the eastern Danish provinces to Sweden,” Dr Karsten told Christian Today. He also founded a university in Lund.
The remains in the coffin are a time capsule of “immense importance,” Dr Karsten noted.
About the writer: Mark Ellis is a senior correspondent for the ASSIST News Service and also the founder of www.Godreports.com, a website that shares stories, testimonies and videos from the church around the world to build interest and involvement in world missions.
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