User talk:Evensteven

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Making the changes[edit]

Hey! I just saw that you closed the discussion. I'm just curious: do you plan to make these changes yourself or would you like me or someone else to? Gold Standard 00:58, 6 February 2014 (UTC)

I thought I would start tomorrow if I didn't see anyone else starting. But I'm not trying to claim the edits for my count. :) If you'd like to go ahead, that's fine with me. I just thought that given all the contention there had been, that I'd wait a little for any possible reaction to the closing before touching the articles. After all, it's usually better form for someone not involved in a discussion to do the closing. I was pushy where it counted; I'll try to be much more easy-going now. It seems the natural approach to anything that could be touchy. Take a look also at the original Project Christianity venue. I put a notice of closure there, but also a comment about continuation of unsettled matters. I think there may be an opportunity to handle those in a more normal environment, and wanted to test the waters before jumping in. Cheers! Evensteven (talk) 01:38, 6 February 2014 (UTC)
Sounds good, I just wanted to make sure someone followed through :) Gold Standard 06:05, 6 February 2014 (UTC)


This is possibly the right edit, but made for completely the wrong reasons. Nothing is more POV, un-historical or generally reprehensible than to try and make historical figures conform to some bland homgenized concept of Christianity. Really you should know better. If non-Catholics like to look to Gregory they must take him as he actually was. However (see History of Purgatory, it is likely that Gregory, although one of those who helped the concept along, did not think of "purgatory" as a place in the after-life in the late medieval way. Johnbod (talk) 16:18, 8 February 2014 (UTC)

Well, I happen to agree with you about trying to "make historical figures conform to some bland homogenized concept of Christianity", and also that Gregory did not think of Purgatory in the late medieval way. But you're simply mistaken that Orthodoxy's view of life after death is either bland or homogenized. Gregory was the last of the popes to be fully Orthodox in his life and work, so much so that he actually admonished the Patriarch of Constantinople about his writings, and rightly so in the Orthodox view. That is how he actually was, and the events are there even in the western histories. I'm surprised you haven't put that together yet. Evensteven (talk) 17:36, 8 February 2014 (UTC)
It was your edit summary: " purgatory is an RC doctrine alone; NPOV replacement language attempts to express the beliefs held in common" that raised a red flag; that is completely the wrong way to approach things, and the reverse of NPOV. Johnbod (talk) 17:52, 8 February 2014 (UTC)
Ok, that's more understandable. Yet, the existence of purgatory is an RC opinion, a point of view. The Orthodox opinion is also a POV. NPOV is not the wrong way to approach things. There is no reverse of NPOV here. Perhaps you have thought that the edit expressed the Orthodox view? Not exactly. There is enough common ground between Catholic and Orthodox to drive a truck through, and that is where I placed the language. Evensteven (talk) 19:29, 8 February 2014 (UTC)
An extra thought too. The doctrine of purgatory seems to be acceptable to some Protestants too, although I was once Anglo-Catholic and didn't believe in it. I attempted to make the wording neutral for them too. For those Protestants who do not believe that prayers for the dead are of any avail, I can only say that Gregory did what he did, for reasons both Catholic and Orthodox find acceptable, and if they don't agree with what he did, that's fine, but not a reason to omit what he did and why. The wording must also reflect Gregory as he was. Evensteven (talk) 19:35, 8 February 2014 (UTC)


I started off this year with a few goals...i.e. articles I'd like to get up to GA and FA status--and 14 of those articles are Christ's apostles which are in a wide range of disarray and need a good clean-up. I aim to work on one per month over the next year or so getting them up to GA status initially (and maybe FA afterwards). I recently started by sandboxing St Andrew protocletos (the start of it at [1]) and I'd like to include some of the varied traditions (western, orthodox, protestant)...since you have a better grasp of the orthodox perspective and are rather level-headed, I'd like to work with you if you were interested. --ColonelHenry (talk) 15:08, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

Thanks, ColonelHenry. This area is not my strength, and I have (at the moment) few materials at hand that bear on the topic, but I am interested and would be glad to contribute as I am able. Please understand that I must work slowly (personal reasons), am sometimes unavoidably away from the Internet, and that this is a first-time activity for me on WP. But I like the goal too, and hope I can help move it along. Evensteven (talk) 18:46, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
  • I'd be glad to have your insight as I work the article into shape. I admit it's an area I thought I was stronger on, but the more I look back at the academic sources, I have come to realise a little more research than I expected for the project. If you're able to add a little research along the way it would be a great way for both of us to grow into a stronger position in theological articles, etc. I anticipate I'd learn more about the orthodox view from your unique perspective and insight than I would as an outsider. I completely understand working slowly...I'm in the same boat for different reasons...I have about five articles that are taking a while to develop and write because of real life stuff that have been a bit higher priority for me at present, and the apostles improvement idea is running parallel to other poetry articles, and the 20 presidents of Rutgers that I'd like to get to GA status. I think one apostle ever 4-6 weeks would be somewhat manageable, although 8 weeks is looking more likely.--ColonelHenry (talk) 19:08, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
I too anticipate some real stretching (learning), so a more extended time frame looks even better to me (not that I want anything to impede progress). And frankly, the more I can learn about digging up sources, the better I'll like it. Until now, I've depended most on what I have at hand, but this will require more. Seems to me like the most critical skill I need to develop further if I hope to continue having anything to contribute. Evensteven (talk) 19:28, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Peace Barnstar Hires.png The Barnstar of Diplomacy
Your comments on the Height template RfC were very helpful and insightful. Thank you for your participation there. Gigs (talk) 18:28, 24 February 2014 (UTC)

Wow! I'm flattered; many thanks. I'm glad for any help I might have been able to give. And it was a good learning experience for me too. Evensteven (talk) 18:38, 24 February 2014 (UTC)

History of scholarship on GoM[edit]

Hey, sorry I got a little snippy there. Those of us who have been an audience to this Greek tragedy for three years have had all the fun we can stand. You might find this reference useful:

This recent publication addresses the Papias question head on.

I fully support the suggestion of a historiography of scholarship on the Gospel of Matthew, which could include an analysis and summary of primary source quotations by prominent scholars of different eras and how those scholars have understood the origins of the Gospel of Matthew over time. This kind of approach is rooted in a conservative analysis of the primary literature, as opposed to the interplay between the conjectures of modern scholars. Til suggested, in the FTN discussion, that a new article should be created to capture all this historical knowledge. I think that's a better way to go too, rather than try to fit it into the GoM article. That would give us three articles: Gospel of Matthew, which is based on modern so-called "mainstream" conjectures; "History of scholarship on GoM", which has Church history plus all the conjectures about a Hebrew Gospel of Matthew leading up to the modern consensus; and Hebrew Gospel hypothesis which has all the conjectures, major and minor, about Hebraic source documents that may have contributed to the Canonical Gospels. Ignocrates (talk) 01:01, 25 February 2014 (UTC)

Say, thanks. No worries about hitting the wall. I've been there too, sooner than you, so I understood immediately. I've scanned the MacDonald ref already, but it will take a little time to do it justice. I can see already that I have a considerably different approach and mindset though. I guess the historiography outline is one way to go, but I don't think it can be used as a substitute for due mention of items in the main article. It does have the advantage of providing easy links to more details, as well as space for lots of detail. Evensteven (talk) 01:46, 25 February 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Requests for mediation/Hebrew Gospel of Matthew[edit]

I'm a little unhappy about your call for a vote at Wikipedia talk:Requests for mediation/Hebrew Gospel of Matthew. This is effectively a WP:RFC on the Gospel of Matthew article, but one which is open only to a handful of editors. For the record, I strongly oppose your proposed addition to the Gospel of Matthew article, for the reasons outlined by PiCo. -- (talk) 03:40, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

I'm sorry about your unhappiness, but I also have no way of knowing who you are or just what your concerns are. It was not me who closed off the discussion to IP addresses. I am not the mediator. I can't see how I am responsible. Evensteven (talk) 04:09, 28 February 2014 (UTC)
It's not an RFC, and any consensus formed in the mediation is still up for discussion after the conclusion of the mediation. As an IP, I would recommend you register your account if you want to participate. Thanks. Andrevan@ 19:33, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

Evensteven, I incorporated your suggested changes. Are you satisfied with the latest version? Ignocrates (talk) 17:49, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

Macedonia naming dispute[edit]

Hi Evensteven, sorry to bother you. I'm just curious as to why you undid the edits I previously made. Here is the link to the United Nations webite listing all the member-states: As you can see, the country is listed under the letter "T", as "The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia".

Cheers — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:51, 29 March 2014 (UTC)

Perhaps I was wrong in my impression that there might be some ethnic ax being ground here, but as far as I know, the official name of the nation is "Republic of Macedonia". After the breakup of the Soviet Union, it was admitted to the UN under the name you give as a result of a dispute with Greece over its chosen name, but that does not mean that's the name by which it goes commonly. By the way, what's your point about the "Slavic Macedonian" ethnic reference in your third edit? I have reverted your edit again. Discussion needs to move to the article talk page to resolve any dispute, but the article will need to remain in its original state until the matter is settled clearly, per usual WP practice regarding consensus. Evensteven (talk) 00:15, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
The guidelines for Macedonia-related names are at Wikipedia:Naming conventions (Macedonia). Elizium23 (talk) 00:53, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

I'm sorry you found my comments offensive. First of all I was unaware there had already been a ruling on the issue. Secondly I did not mean it in any bad way, it's just that it is a complicated issue. Since Macedonia is primarily a geographic region which is divided between the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Greece and Bulgaria, there are as such Slav Macedonians, Greek Macedonians, and Bulgarian Macedonians. The term "Slav Macedonians" I found it at: and the 3 main ethnic groups in the region of Macedonia at: I just meant to clear things up so as to avoid confusion.

P.S. I hope I replied at the right place, I'm still new to editing and talking on Wikipedia. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:33, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

It's ok by me; I took no offense. It's only that your edits seemed to fit a pattern that some abusers of Wikipedia take, with enough frequency that the work here requires some protection. I felt that the edits needed solid justification if they were to stand, and I was simply making it clear that they would need backing up in discussion (which generally takes place on the article's talk page - one opens and titles a new section there, with comment, to start discussion rolling). If I was rough on you, I'm sorry. In my ten months on Wikipedia, I've seen abusive patterns of editing many times, but you're the single exception who has ever responded to reversions with plausible reasons, which is itself a proof against abuse. So, welcome to Wikipedia.
One thing for you to consider might be getting an account, for which you can choose a handle (moniker). Such named accounts are recognized as less likely to create editing problems. Hence, edits from IP addresses, such as yours, are sometimes viewed (justifiably or not) with less weight; they come from an unfamiliar source. Over time, an editor usually becomes familiar to others by means of his/her moniker, and it becomes easier to know how to handle situations. Besides, you are apparently one person in this conversation, but have already used at least two IP addresses, so your edit history, talk page material, and anything else already begin to become scattered.
Finally, I have little real knowledge about ethnicity in the region of Macedonia beyond the fact that it is mixed and that there are sometimes conflicts or disagreements there. Before finding out about this arbitration committee decision, I was expecting to call attention to your edits and ask others who knew something concrete to take a look. I was suspicious because I had never heard of "the former Yugoslav Republic" of anything, and even if real, it seemed to grind at some point of contention. Why would a nation ever choose freely to assume such a name? And indeed, I now see that it was forced politically. I'm sure the whole situation does get complex, but I have no personal interest in that issue. My interest lay (and lies) in keeping such political or religious slants from speaking authoritatively on Wikipedia, under the policy guideline of neutral point of view. And a few people around here may recognize me as capable of being rather adamant about that. So, please understand that my interest was in protecting the article from expressing inappropriate viewpoints (or expressing them inappropriately).
I'm confident that you'll soon be able to navigate all these waters. It all boils down to reasonable discussion, really, and you're off and running there. Good luck in your future editing. Cheers, Evensteven (talk) 16:39, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for the tips. I think it would be best if I set up an account like you suggested, I did some research and it does seem very handy to have one.
I also did some research on how the Macedonian issue has been handled on Wikipedia and noticed that there has been quite a long history of edit-warring. It's a good thing that some guidelines are now in place, I believe it makes it easier for editors to navigate around such sensitive topics.
Lastly, I'm kind of glad that I got myself into this misunderstanding, because it helped me become aware of how Wikipedia works behind the scenes. Until recently I had never contributed personally, I had only read articles, and I had no idea about the mechanisms in place like rulings, arbitration committees, etc. So it turned out to be a useful experience in the end.
See you around! — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:25, 31 March 2014 (UTC)
Glad I could help! I walked into it blind, also (not the first time I've done that here) - it can happen to anyone. And I've found that selecting a time and place to walk into a problem area can also be very educational, with a little advance preparation. Short of arbitration, there are also requests for comment (RFCs) that seek more editors to contribute ideas in a dispute, and formal mediations run by neutral, experienced editors to assist in discussion procedure and temperature. There seem to be few difficulties that haven't been faced here by someone, sometime, so there are tools to address them.
One more tip. It's the general rule on talk or discussion pages to leave four tildes (~) after the end of your edit. Those characters are automatically expanded by Wikipedia software to produce your signature (user name) and time stamp, identifying the editor. Let me know who you turn out to be. ;) Evensteven (talk) 01:35, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
Will do, once I create my account! — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:19, 8 April 2014 (UTC)

Discretionary sanctions[edit]

Please note that topics related to the Balkans were the subject of an ARBCOM ruling and are currently subject to discretionary sanctions. In other words, the articles may be subject to WP:1RR and blocks or bans may be handed out for misbehavior. Elizium23 (talk) 00:50, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

Thanks! I was completely unaware of this. Are we as editors responsible for finding out about such rulings, and is some way provided for us to do so? Evensteven (talk) 01:47, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
Sometimes the talk pages will have a warning header such as at Talk:Macedonia, but since it is for all related topics and the Eastern Orthodox Church page is not directly related, not in this case. Sometimes you won't know until an editor in-the-know mentions it. You can always do a search for WP:ARBCOM rulings. As a rule of thumb, if it's an incredibly controversial topic, it may have gone to ArbCom at some point in the past. Elizium23 (talk) 02:22, 30 March 2014 (UTC)
Thanks again. I just walked into this one unawares; the edits sounded fishy. I didn't even know there was a big controversy. It just sounded like someone had some kind of ethnic peeve going, a Slavic or anti-Slavic sentiment perhaps. I just don't like the articles to have slants. Thanks for the pointers, but I think I would have been blind-sided by this one in any case. I'm still not sure where the root of it is, but I'm just not interested enough to look at it more myself. I was even planning on inviting others to comment if they had a mind to do so, and leaving it at that. Evensteven (talk) 03:34, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

Disambiguation link notification for April 10[edit]

Hi. Thank you for your recent edits. Wikipedia appreciates your help. We noticed though that when you edited Eastern Orthodox Church, you added a link pointing to the disambiguation page Atonement (check to confirm | fix with Dab solver). Such links are almost always unintended, since a disambiguation page is merely a list of "Did you mean..." article titles. Read the FAQ • Join us at the DPL WikiProject.

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Note: this one was necessary, as there are several Christian contexts for the word, leading to separate articles. Let the reader choose the one (or more) that it occurs to him/her to follow up. Evensteven (talk) 14:47, 10 April 2014 (UTC)