Reconstructed face of St. Martin de Porres. Credit: Divulgaco Ebrafol, Brazilian Team of Forensic Anthropology and Odontology.
Lima, Peru, Nov 5, 2015 / 12:08 am (CNA).- A new reconstruction of the face of St. Martin de Porres reveals that the Dominican brother had trouble eating toward the end of his life, due to the fact that he was missing most of his teeth.
When St. Martin died, he had only two teeth, and would have had great difficulty chewing, said Dr. Paulo Miamoto, pointing to the distortions in the saint’s upper jaw.
Miamoto was part of an anthropology and dentistry group that spoke at a Nov. 3, 2015 presentation on the reconstructed face of the Peruvian saint.
The presentation coincided with the unveiling of the face, constructed by a team of specialists from research based on the saint’s skull.
Thousands of the faithful packed the Basilica of the Most Holy Rosary in Lima for the event.
A Solemn Mass was celebrated by Auxiliary Bishop Raúl Antonio Chau of Lima, and concelebrated by Dominican priests. In the homily, the bishop emphasized St. Martin's humble service and recalled the words of St. John XXIII, who called him “Martin of Charity” at his canonization Mass.
Once the Eucharistic celebration was over, Father Luis Ramírez, prior of St. Dominic Convent where Martin lived, introduced the specialists from the NGO Ebrafol – a Brazilian forensic anthropology and dentistry team that headed up the study.
The specialists gave details on how they were able to reconstruct – in digital 3D – the face of St.Martin.
For his part, the 3D designer Cicero Moraes explained that when he made the graphic representation of the saint's face, the result coincided closely with an old painting and a statue of the saint by unknown artists that are kept at St. Dominic's convent.
The research on the project was a collaborative effort between the NGO Ebrafol, St. Dominic's Convent and the universities of St. Martin de Porres and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega in Peru. The group has previously recreated and unveiled the faces of St. Rose of Lima and St. Juan Macías.
Catholic News Agency. Apparently St. Martin de Porres only had two teeth when he died. Accessed December 5, 2015