PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- Archaeologists working at an ancient church in Turkey believe they have unearthed a piece of the cross used to crucify Jesus.
But it could take years of analysis before the world will know for sure.
"We have found a holy thing in a chest; it's a piece of a cross," said one of the archaeologists.
Workers believe that cross is the one Jesus died on Friday, April 3, 33 A.D.
The piece of wood was discovered in a stone chest on the site of a church in Turkey, built in 660 A.D.
The church also has frescoes on its walls depicting Jesus, Mary and the Apostles.
Researchers aren't sure who owned the chest, but it was probably a religious person of some importance, and that person apparently believed the cross relic was the real deal.
Karen Bowden, a curator at the Kelso Museum on the campus of the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary told KDKA's Brenda Waters, "Turkey is a very important site in early Christianity." Continued...
But also, she says to analyze the piece of wood could take years to determine its age through a process called Carbon 14 Dating.
The recent discovery was sent to a lab for testing.
Best case scenario, it could be traced to the year of the Crucifixion, but we would not know if the wood is from the cross of Jesus.
The team began working on the site in Turkey at the church in 2009.
In addition to the piece of wood found, excavators have also uncovered more than 1,000 skeletons.
The cross Jesus died on is said to have been 12-feet high.
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