Visiting the faithful with a traveling collection of relics for the purpose of spiritual talks and public veneration is not a new idea. The practice of transporting the remains of the saints for veneration and exhibit began in the 11th century. Religious and secular traveled the countryside and told stories of the lives of the saints. The intention was to hopefully impress and inspire the faithful by the tales of virtue and sacrifice.
As the remains of our spiritual ancestors transversed Europe so did their reputation and legend. Their spirituality has been our inheritance and their steadfast devotion, unwavering discipline, and supreme austerities became a model for many of today's modern religious lifestyles. Early monasteries and strict rules of life may be credited as among the greatest contributions to the cultivation of modern society.

In every civilization throughout history, there have always been heroes, exemplars for us to follow and emulate. The saints throughout Europe and the New World brought order to chaos, strength, and hope to the common person, council to the wise and prominent, as well as opportunity for salvation. The bones of the Saints bring with them our past, reassure us in the present, and give us hope of a future.

The guardians who possessed the Holy in the form of relics were able to show gratitude by sharing these sacred and Holy remains with others. The faithful often could not visit the shrines throughout the world that were frequently visited by the locals and the privileged. The traveling exhibit brought the saints to the faithful. The stories of the saints, allowed the faithful to become aware of the commonality to their lives, the struggles and sacrifices.
The veneration of relics realizes no boundaries; it simply validates the heroic virtues of individuals not recognizing race, nation, or whether rich or poor. The remains of the saints are more than merely fascinating mementoes; they are pieces of a road map to Heaven itself. They make us aware that the saints who now await us in Heaven where; actually at one time people like us, who suffered, struggled, and carried their own crosses. The key to their success was faith and Holy perseverance. Not all of us are called to be religious and lead a life of prayer, obedience, and poverty. Likewise, we are not meant to become martyrs for our faith as seen in the early Church. However, we are expected (at least hopefully) to persevere. This Holy Perseverance comes from Christ, through his Blessed Mother and the Communion of Saints. Like us, they studied and followed the examples of their predecessors. They read the lives of the saints; they traveled to the shrines, and venerated relics. What the ICHRusa does is to bring this Heavenly Jerusalem to you.

When you venerate a relic you are truly in the presence of a sacred remain that God has chosen to gift us with; a reminder of a life to come, and the present state of life that we live within. We can study the struggles and trials of the saints and emulate them in our own daily lives. We can read about the faith conversions and life styles changes and gain strength from them, knowing that we too are capable if we respond to the will of God. We can share in the same gratitude for prayers heard and answered that filled the lives of the saints. There is a reassuring spiritual significance when an individual has had his/her petition realized. A "maybe there really is a God" and "He really does love me" feeling.
The presence of the saints makes an individual’s perseverance and quest for the Heavenly Jerusalem a reality. Accounts of conversions, healings, and miracles were commonplace in the history of the translation of the relics of St. Marcellinus and St. Peter. In the United States, shrines that house relics are few, and Churches no longer have relics available for public veneration or feast days. The ICHRusa is filling this void.
In 1993, Thomas Serafin created Saints Alive, the first website on the worldwide web devoted to the preservation / veneration of first and second-class religious relics and the education of the faithful.

Because of the great interest throughout the United States and Europe, it was believed to be beneficial and appropriate to establish an international movement for the propagation of the preservation and veneration of relics. The commonality of the organization was to be centered on the desire expressed by the faithful, to have a central source of educational information and a governing official office. This was the beginning of the International Crusade for Holy Relics (ICHRusa).
In 1998, the ICHRusa started battling the sale of relics on the Internet. Being a pioneer in the safeguarding of the historical remains of the saints, the ICHRusa has been directly responsible for combating the abuse through the use of the media, reeducating relic sellers and buyers, and helping the Internet ISP’s reevaluate their practices.

During an exhibit of relics from his private collection at the Forest Lawn Memorial Park Museum in Glendale, California (November - January 2002), a number of individuals offered financial and professional assistance in support of efforts to exhibit, promote, and preserve the collection. Desiring to take full advantage of these offers of assistance, Mr. Serafin developed the concept of a non-profit organization, the Apostolate for Holy Relics, which would utilize his private collection, along with the talents and resources of many individuals, to increase appreciation of the spiritual, historical, and artistic value of relics, to promote the devotional veneration of relics, and to help preserve and safeguard relics for future generations.

As a answer to a need in the Catholic communities the ICHRusa has been reorganized to address the issue of the education of primary and secondary school and the faithful and curious alike. It is our goal to return the remains of our Christian saints to the lofty station they so rightly deserve. We have combined a vast relic treasury and a desire to connect Heaven to Earth through education and veneration. This historic endeavor is the first time in history that a traveling exhibit of religious relics and catechism program has been assembled for the glory of God, the Communion of Saints, and the faithful.

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