Talk:Junípero Serra

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Love of mortification?[edit]

Would someone directly involved with the writing of this article consider a better wording for this? The religious overtones are too obvious. Besides, for the non-religious reader it sounds plain ridiculous.

I was not involved in this but but more on mortification can be found at — Preceding unsigned comment added by Drockstroh (talkcontribs) 23:28, 18 January 2014 (UTC)


Junipero Serra was not Catalan, but he was born in Mallorca Island, Balears Islands, Spain.

According to our article on Mallorca, Catalan is the local language. It seems to me that the determining factor would be the origins of his parents. If they were also from Mallorca then it would be appropriate to simply call him "Mallorcan". But if his parents were Catalan, then the current description is probably more accurate. -Willmcw 21:16, July 12, 2005 (UTC)
      • By that criteria, all Catalans today whose parents are from Andalusia, for example, are not Catalan but Andalusian too. Junipero Serra was certainly Majorcan. It is true that the local language of Majorca is a variant of the Catalan language, but Spanish is spoken in South America and that does not make its people Spanish; French is spoken in Canada though that does not make Canadians French. The point is moot and a minor edit shall take place; this is not a place for petty political squabbles, but for facts.
        • Good. Thanks for doing that. (BTW, I agree with your logic, but I think you are using the word "moot" incorrectly. [1] Cheers, -Willmcw 11:12, July 24, 2005 (UTC)

          • Discussion seems to have diverged from the way Catalan is used in the article. The article states that his mother tongue was Catalan. Citation Needed seems superfluous in this case. He was baptized with Catalan names (Miquel and Josep). Both Serra (father's surname) and Ferrer (mother's surname) were and still are very common names throughout the Catalan speaking parts of Spain including Mallorca. Most importantly, he was born in a very small, out of the way town in the middle of Mallorca where it is extremely unlikely that anyone spoke anything other than Mallorcan - the local dialect of Catalan. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:46, 27 October 2009 (UTC)


Should Junipero Serra be Canonized after information has been brought up about him enslaving the Native Americans? I would like to hear some opinions.Pleeeaaase!!!!!!!!!!! - Blessed Sacrament School in Newark, Ohio

Junipero Serra "enslaved Native Americans"? Pleeeaaase!!!!!!!!!!! The worst thing he did from our modern perspective and based on evidence, not unfounded assertions, was okay corporal punishment for Native Christians who broke the rules. According to Dan Krieger, professor emeritus of History at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo thick whips of cord were used (Santa Maria Sun, Sept. 1, 2015). In other words, they were publically shamed by flogging. Capital crimes were handled by the civil authorities. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:306:CC10:6D10:226:8FF:FEDC:17C1 (talk) 00:13, 18 November 2015 (UTC)

The purpose of Wikipedia is not to develop or discuss our opinions. Our aim here is to summarize verifiable information from a neutral point of view. I'd suggest that you find a forum which discusses Catholicism or Native American history. Good luck, -Willmcw 22:02, 17 November 2005 (UTC)
Relevant future edit: There should be notes about the Demonization service held of Junipero Serra as performed by The_Satanic_Temple as it's highly relevant, noteworthy, and related this topic[1]. I just need to find a better citation.HAILXSATANX666 (talk) 19:42, 2 December 2015 (UTC)


"The chapel at Mission San Juan Capistrano, ... Known proudly as 'Father Serra's Church' "

"Known proudly" by whom?

"proudly" removed, though we still don't know who knows it as "Father Serra's Church". Dmw 14:36, 22 May 2006 (UTC)

"Besides extraordinary fortitude, his most conspicuous virtues were insatiable zeal, love of mortification, self-denial, and absolute confidence in God. His executive abilities has been especially noted by non-Catholic writers. The esteem in which his memory is held by all classes in California may be gathered from the fact that Mrs. Stanford, not a Catholic, had a granite monument erected to him at Monterey."

This entire paragraph seems a bit... fawning. I suggest it be removed until the information can be rewritten NPOV. Dmw 14:36, 22 May 2006 (UTC)

Junípero Serra's given name[edit]

As a Spanish born man. The name given to him by his parents was Miguel José Serra Ferrer. Not Miquel Josep Serra i Ferrer as stated in the article. By checking the wikipedia of the same topic in the spanish speaking version of wikipedia the name is Miguel José Serra Ferrer.

That's because he was born in Majorca where the native language is Majorcan Catalan, not Castillian Spanish. Also, I believe that the use of "y" between the parents surnames was still the practice when he was born, so even in Spanish it probably would have had the "y". Note: most people in Spain with the last name Ferrer are Catalan, not Spanish. Mike Dillon 01:13, 13 November 2006 (UTC)

Mike Dillon, the dichotomy is between Catalan and Castilian, not Catalan and Spanish (as far as nationalities go). As for Majorcans considering their language Catalan, you might want to brush up on that (go to Mallorca, for instance). Anyhow, as far as his name and nationality goes, we shall stick to the facts. Fansites can make him as Spanish, Catalan or Majorcan as they wish in their own time.

I really doubt anyone born in Majorca in the year 1713 would have his name given in Castilian, so his correct name would be "Miquel Josep Serra i Ferrer". Also, the practice of joining both lastnames with "i" is alive and well in Majorca today. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:52, 12 June 2008 (UTC)


This article strikes me as distinctly one-sided. There's only one sentence mentioning any kind of controversy surrounding his actions, and a lot of the article borrows heavily from the Catholic Encyclopedia entry. (This is not to say that this isn't a valid source, but it is likely to take one side over the other.) Growing up just south of San Francisco I've heard Father Serra's name many times, but rarely (maybe never) without a discussion of his treatment of Native Americans in the area. Regardless of how you feel, I think intellectual honesty demands a section on the controversial nature of his methods. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:45, 27 April 2008 (UTC)

The controversy I think you are looking for is modern controversy. That is, we people of this time and place pass judgement on the actions of the people of the past. There was probably no controversy at the time. The Spanish people did what they did and there were no others to criticize it. How it was, was how it was. It may have caused discomfort among the indigenous of the time to have their lifestyles transformed to what the Catholic Church of Spain thought a life of conversion should be, but the only controversies raised are those looked at by history and a modern standard. There's no use in critiquing these actions of the's done, and what we have today, whether one thinks a collection of Serra missions is historically valuable or not, is valued by others.
At the same time, if you are aware of contemporary controversies, feel free to add them to this discussion or properly placed and cited in the article. I think that's within the realm of Wikipedia.--Magi Media (talk) 00:53, 22 December 2008 (UTC)

I agree that this article takes a distinctly one-sided perspective, almost completely ignoring the controversy about Serra and the indigenous populations that he "converted." At the very least, there should be more than one source for this article. A major source for the controversy is Daniel Fogel's book, "Junipero Serra, the Vatican, and Enslavement Thology.Rossmanc (talk) 18:47, 11 April 2009 (UTC)

Anyone who thinks that what he did to destroy the Indians' lifestyle, impose physical labor on men who had been hunters and warriors, enslaved an entire people, the result of which was near-genocide, and calls it "discomfort" and then says this is merely a modern controversy has neither brains nor empathy. You see your entire people and way of life destroyed and then decide whether it's only important to people two hundred years down the road and only causes "discomfort." —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:13, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

The controversies raised in the article should be the controversies that took place in that period of time, not by those conjured up two hundred years later by empathetic historians. I doubt there were any controversies raised and/or recorded at the time, if found, enter them and cite them. But don't put a POV in the article that says, "shame on that Junipero Serra for destroying the lifestyle of those indigenous." Another thing, the Tongva people were indolent hunters and gatherers. I don't think the term "warrior" applies. The Spanish of the time considered it a biblical duty to clothe these people and put them into productive (as opposed to passive) lifestyle, whether others consider that right or wrong. They also considered it their biblical duty to convert them to Christianity (from paganism).
And by the way, Mr. unsigned brainiac, I am of Irish Catholic descent. Don't tell me about not understanding a cultural lifestyle that was destroyed at the hands of another heathen nation which then forced my great grandfather and his whole family to uproot themselves from Cork, Ireland (ca. 1852) and displace to America where they became hard working coal miners. Ironically, from my vantage point here in America today as one of their descendants, I consider that a positive "discomfort." --Magi Media (talk) 22:18, 24 April 2010 (UTC)

"Indolent hunters and gatherers", "heathen", sounds like skewed Catholic teachings to me. This article is completely one-sided. And we *do* analyse the motivations of historical figures based on the information we have, specially when they are involved in enslavement and genocide(e.g., The article omits all discussion on his role in colonization and seems to be cleaned up to validate the current discussion of canonization. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:19, 19 November 2013 (UTC)

This is incredible...

This standard of 'it was OK at the time' could be applied to any historical crime...including the extermination of the Jews in Hitler's Germany...

The wiping out of indigenous society, religion, culture, language and physical extermination on the North American continent stands as one of the darkest episodes of human evil in recorded history...never has such a genocide taken place on such a massive scale and for so long...

Besides the moral emptiness of 'Magi's' position...there is no veracity to it say that the views of the catholic church at the time represented the general moral standard of that time or that the actions of its officials was somehow 'not controversial' in the broader sense of human society of that era is simply idiotic...

This historical era was known as The Enlightenment for good reason...see Voltaire...and quoting here the first paragraph of his Wikipedia entry...was known for 'his attacks on the established Catholic Church, and his advocacy of freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and separation of church and state...'

So much for the specious argument 'it was OK at the time' was not OK then...and it is not okay now to pretend that it was......Q,E.D... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) May 6, 2017

Fra Style[edit]

What is the title of "Fra"? I'm not familiar with this honorific and have only known Serra as "Father".Mazeau (talk) 15:49, 2 September 2008 (UTC)

"Fra" would be short for "Frater" (Latin: brother). In most Catholic orders, the title of brother is given to unordained members, as in Saint Jean Baptiste de la Salle's order of Christian Brothers. Ordained "priests" are generally called "Father," especially by the layity. However among the monks, ordained priests who reside within an abbey or monastery, they will call each other "Brother" Thus the appelation sticks. "Friar" is an anglicized version of the Old or Middle French pronunciation of "frère" (brother). Modern French pronounces it more like "frair". Old French pronounces it more like "frier." We recall the fabled Friar Tuck of Robin Hood tales, he was a Franciscan priest. The Order of Saint Francis, Franciscans, still robe themselves like monks although they are not relegated to monastery living. However, neither are they archdiocesan priests. They are mostly educators. But they received the appelation "Father" from lay people. Many non-archdiocesan orders have have both the unordained brothers, and the ordained priests, Fathers.--Magi Media (talk) 01:16, 22 December 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for posting that - a nice summary of the topic.   Will Beback  talk  07:01, 6 February 2009 (UTC)
I see someone changed the misspell of Fra to Fray which is what lead to the first part of this discussion. However, everything I stated in part two stll applies. "Fray appears to be a corruption of Frère or Frater or any romance title that means "brother."--Magi Media (talk) 16:27, 7 February 2009 (UTC)

Fra is not a misspelling of Fray. It's the honorific in Catalan, rather than in Spanish (castilian) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:49, 27 October 2009 (UTC)

Shortening of Article?[edit]

The article is now only one sentence long. What happened to the rest of the article? Can someone revert it back? Fatrb38 (talk) 07:20, 2 March 2009 (UTC)

Snake bite?[edit]

If he died of a snake bite, it should be in the article - I removed the category because I couldn't find any reference in the text. Totnesmartin (talk) 20:26, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

I agree, and I've removed the category again. We may never know for sure how Serra died, but one semi-reliable source says it was due to asthma and tuberculosis.[2] I suggest we omit any definite cause of death until we find a truly reliable source.   Will Beback  talk  20:18, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
It's probably best the category is removed. Junípero Serra, pioneer colonist of California By Agnes Repplier gives a detailed account of his death in the last chapter, mentioning exacerbation of his weakness through his mortifications, a chest ailment (probably tuberculosis or the like - I've also seen it reported that he suffered from asthma) as well as trouble in his leg. The book goes into great detail, including his reception of viaticum, but there is no mention of a snake bite. I looked at another biography which discussed his death in detail and also had no mention of a snake. Mamalujo (talk) 19:28, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
I can't tell quite what it says, but Junípero Serra, pioneer colonist of California By Agnes Repplier, 1933, apparently says something about being bitten by a snake and being lame the rest of this life. (I say "apparently" because it's a snippet view and I can't see all of it.) Perhaps the snakebite occurred long before his death. Junípero Serra, pioneer colonist of California By Agnes Repplier mentions a leg injury on page 84, but it doesn't mention the cause.   Will Beback  talk  20:11, 29 May 2009 (UTC)

How many P's in the name Jose?[edit]

What kind of name is Josep? Majorcan? I think this edit needs a citation before it's allowed to stand.--Magi Media (talk) 15:27, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

It would be great if we could get this issue resolved - this article seems to used quite alot - and we should get it right. I rvt the recent edit because it was unexplained / unreferenced by new editor. Given the discussion (see above), we do need something better than the old edit that created this "josep". Emargie (talk) 16:46, 18 December 2009 (UTC)

All accounts that I have read on Serra that will say his given name or name of baptism pronounce him as "Miguel Jose." The name Josep is a name of Catalan, but there is no account other than this one that calls him "Miquel Josep." So, there is the question: does "Miquel Josep" translate into "Miguel Jose?" And which was he actually named at baptism. If his mother language is Catalan, was he called Miquel Jopep or did he assume the more properly Spanish name of Miguel Jose? If this is just a matter of semantics possibly both names can remain in the article since after all that he assumed the name of Junipero.--Magi Media (talk) 19:20, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

Baptismal name[edit]

Note number two reads, The name Miquel Josep can be qualified in this article if he was named in the Catalan tongue. This translates into Miguel José in Spanish. The real case would rely on his name given at baptism. I can almost guarantee that the name on his baptismal certificate was in Latin. So I guess his "real" name was Michael Joseph (or, less likely, Michael Josephus). Rwflammang (talk) 23:41, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

The source given seems suspicious to me. I am not necessarily denying its accuracy, but can we get some background? I seem to see the name "Miquel Joseph Serre. There is a notation below in a much darker ink that seems to read:
Hoy es el V. P. Fr. Junipero Serra após
tol de la Califórnia.
???rió en Monterrey el 28. 1784.
Which translates:
Today is the V.(?) P.(?) Fr. Junipero Serra, apostle of California
and under the line it reads
????? in Monterrey August 28, 1784.
This does not look like his baptismal record to me, but rather more like a record of something taking place in Monterrey—California or Mexico—long after he founded the first Mission. I did not bother to read what came on the right side of the page, by the way, nor am I an expert in this kind of thing. Can we find one?
The provenance of this source aside, the discrepancies in spelling ("Josepp and "Serre") could be due to local dialect (yes, Mallorquí has dialects), orthographic variation reflecting a Latin reflex, or unexplainable idiosyncrasy.

InFairness (talk) 10:35, 24 May 2013 (UTC)


The section on "Genocide" is barely related to the life of Junipero Serra (like the statistic about the size of the Indian population in 1821 - that's almost 50 yrs after Serra's death). It's more of a condemnation of the missions in general, or Christian evangelization in general. It should either be connected specifically to the life of Fr. Serra or moved to a more appropriate article. SHarold (talk) 07:14, 18 April 2010 (UTC)

Poorly sourced, factually erroneous, OR, SYN and POV pushing section on genocide.[edit]

The section on genocide is poorly sourced, riddled with patent factual errors, and is the product of OR, SYN, unbalanced, has undue weight and engages in POV pushing . Accusing a figure of genocide is a serious claim. Per Wikipedia policy it requires serious sourcing. It is axiomatic on Wikipedia that exceptional claims require exceptional sources:

See also: Wikipedia:Fringe theories Certain red flags should prompt editors to examine the sources for a given claim:

  • • surprising or apparently important claims not covered by mainstream sources;
  • • reports of a statement by someone that seems out of character, embarrassing, controversial, or against an interest they had previously defended;
  • • claims that are contradicted by the prevailing view within the relevant community, or that would significantly alter mainstream assumptions, especially in science, medicine, history, politics, and biographies of living persons. This is especially true when proponents consider that there is a conspiracy to silence them.

Exceptional claims in Wikipedia require high-quality sources.[5] If such sources are not available, the material should not be included. Also be sure to adhere to other policies, such as the policy for biographies of living persons and the undue weight provision of Wikipedia:Neutral point of view. [Emphasis added]

The first source is posted on a PBS website which bears no author name, no footnotes and no bibliography or references. (It appears to be based on or derivative of work by the author Costo, addressed below) It is plainly woefully inadequate for a claim of this type. As noted per the policy above, above “the material should not be included”.

The second source deals with the death count of Indians through 1821; this despite the fact that Serra died almost four decades earlier. This is using SYN and OR to tie Serra to four decades of deaths that occurred while he was not even alive. I haven’t checked the source but I would not be surprised to find out that the fact asserted in the article doesn’t even refer to Serra. Another problem with the source is that it doesn’t have a page cite to allow for verification, rather it references a page range of over eighty pages. Again, as noted per the policy above, above “the material should not be included”.

The third source, Overland Monthly, does not even mention Serra’s name. It is unequivocally OR and SYN and should be removed.

Finally, there is the issue of genocide. Scholarly consensus is that genocide requires genocidal intent (See Genocides in History). The scholarship not only on the California Missions but specifically on Serra shows no genocidal intent but just the opposite – the record is replete with his (and his sucessors’) concerns about diminishing native population. Which brings us to the problem with the use of the claim of genocide in this article. Not even a single reputable scholar in the area of genocide studies has ever accused Serra of genocide. It is a fringe theory: "For a particularly biased attack against the Franciscan missions, see Rupert Costo and Jeannette Henry Costo, The California Missions: A Legacy of Genocide (San Francisco 1987) The title is especially misleading, and we agree with James Axtell, who writes that 'only the rare certifiable homicidal maniac sought to commit 'genocide' upon the Indians…' The missionaries, even more so than the settlers in colonial America had no desire to have Indians die, since their goal was to gain converts and sustain the missions by an assured labor supply." Hence, no genocidal intent. This is plainly a fringe theory. Per Wikipedia policy this material should not be included. Barring some support, I'm going to delete it. This is not to say that valid properly sourced criticisms of Serra, properly weighted, should not be included in the article. That is not what we have currently. Mamalujo (talk) 19:18, 7 May 2010 (UTC)

Unfortunately, this has become more of a well documented train of thought. It has been commented on a number of scholars. While his intent may have been good, Native Americans as with Columbus would disagree. --Morenooso (talk) 01:56, 8 May 2010 (UTC)
BTW, there are admins on this article as well. Admins tend not to let bad edits into articles. Please don't delete material with citations again. --Morenooso (talk) 01:59, 8 May 2010 (UTC)
If it is well documented, then please provide the good documentation in the article. Simply declaring that such serious claims are well documented does not constitute discussion and it does not support the inclusion of material which is does not have reliable sources and is fringe and the product of OR and SYN. Mamalujo (talk) 19:11, 10 May 2010 (UTC)
The citation you deleted recently is a great example. It documented what happened to the California Native American Indian population. And, it was deleted because it did not reference Serra? The reference was to the population of Native Americans. Arbitrary deletions are being made and not appreciated. You're attempting to dismantle the article in a hedgemony fashion. --Morenooso (talk) 21:18, 10 May 2010 (UTC)
Apparently you don't understand synthesis. Please read up. If the article doesn't even mention Serra what we have here is an editor saying something that the sources does not say, namely making the connection between Serra and those population statistics. Please address the substantive objections to the inclusion of this material (above), if you feel it should remain. Mamalujo (talk) 17:57, 12 May 2010 (UTC)

It's been a week and no one is addressing the substance of my objection to the inclusion of this material. Since no substantive discussion has been brought to support it (sorry, "I like it" is not real discussion of the issues), I'm going to delete it. Mamalujo (talk) 21:28, 14 May 2010 (UTC)

I'm going to restore the first section of the deleted material as it clearly refers to Serra, and the source does as well. The other material is on the general mortality of the natives and isn't specifically about Serra.   Will Beback  talk  22:16, 14 May 2010 (UTC)
The fact that one source references Serra only deals with the SYN issue. The problem is that the accusation of genocide attributable to Serra is a fringe theory and that it is a very grave claim. Such a serious claim requires serious sourcing, as I noted at the top of this section. Per wikipedia policy, "If such sources are not available, the material should not be included." (see above). Mamalujo (talk) 21:42, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
There is only one editor "pushing a SYN theory. Another editor disagreed with you and reverted you partially as a compromise. I suggest you accept the compromise as WP:CONSENSUS. ----moreno oso (talk) 21:46, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
I'm no expert, but from what I do know these are not exceptional claims:
  • Serra planned to convert all Indians to Christianity and recruits to the mission were often forced to do so, nearly at gunpoint. Their centuries old native religions, spiritual practices, and ceremonial objects were forbidden. By Spanish law, all baptized Indians were under the authority of the Franciscans. Outfitted in blue uniforms and given foreign Spanish names, they became slaves on the mission farms and ranches. Disobedience was punished by whipping, branding, mutilation or execution. If they fled the mission grounds they were hunted down.
Is this material contested?   Will Beback  talk  21:55, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
Further, though the exact size of pre-contact native populations are just estimates, these sentences don't seem exceptional either:
  • To the Native American Californian people of Alta California, the missions were nothing but forced labour relocation camps. They formed the major part of a calamitous process of colonization that amounted to cultural genocide.
This sentence, which was also deleted, is well-sourced:
  • Between 1769 and 1821, the Indian population dropped from 300,000-700,000 people to 25,000.
That is greater than the proportionate loss of Jews in Europe during the Holocaust. The text does not suggest that it was Serra's intention to kill 90% of the natives, but that was the ultimate outcome of the Spanish conquest which he led.   Will Beback  talk  22:08, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
I've added six books that discuss this issue. I believe there are many more. There's nothing "exceptional" about the view that the missions intended "cultural genocide", or that their presence and activities had the effect of killing the vast majority of natives. There are arguments over the term "genocide", but the facts are not disputed, from what I've seen. Does anyone have a source which says that the natives didn't die or that their deaths were not attributable to the Spanish conquest and mission system?   Will Beback  talk  22:24, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
Will, did you even read this discussion section? My objections and the answer to most of your questions are posted above. The idea that conversion was typically forced has been totally debunked. There were uncommon instances of it, initiated by soldiers not the Padres, and occurring years after Serra was dead. Church law had long prohibited forced conversion and records indicate that natives generally came to the missions voluntarily and were free to leave until they were baptized, after which time they became subjects of the Spanish Crown and were subject to the limitations of that position. As to slavery, the consensus of scholars is that the labor was not slavery. The padres did not own and could not and would not sell their native charges. The arrangements of the missions were communal and no one recieved the profits or benefit of the labor but the community itself. The plan of the missions were to make the population who chose the missions self sufficient Christian hispanic citizens and the properties were to be subdivided and given to the the charges of the mission system (a far cry from slavery). The original plan was to do so in ten years. As to the death toll, it includes decades of deaths long after Serra had passed away. It is misleading because of this and it is SYN because it connects this death toll to Serra when the source does not do so. Also, as to the first source, in addition to being highly inflamatory and making fringe claims, it bears no author name, has no footnotes and no bibliography or sources. As to Serra leading the Spanish conquest, you are misinformed. Spain had secular and religious authority in alta California. Serra was not the secular authority. In fact he clashed with the secular authority and even had to journey to Mexico to go over the head of the secular authority, eventually causing him to be replaced. Mamalujo (talk) 23:10, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
If there is a difference of opinion then we should reflect that in the article, not simply pick our preferred version. Obviously, there are many scholars who take a different view than Davis & Igler. Let's include all of those views, as is required by WP:NPOV.   Will Beback  talk  23:22, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
Even Davis & Igler, while stating that many natives returned to the missions voluntarily after acorn harvests, acknowledge that armed bands were sent out to re-capture escaped novices who did not return voluntarily. (Page 22). Do you still assert that this is an exceptional claim?   Will Beback  talk  23:26, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
Forced conversion is a spurious claim. That novices who voluntarily joined the missions were sometimes brought back forcibly is an historical fact. Of course they joined the community knowing this. The use of corporal punishment is also a fact ... of course it was not uncommon at the time in American or English society either (read Two Years Before the Mast for an account of the commonplace scourging of American merchant sailors). Of course, if corporal punishment is noted, for balance it should also be noted that residents of early California who commited crimes did not have to fear years in prison. I don't have any problem with balanced and well sourced material criticising Serra. It's just the poorly sourced and fringe stuff to which I'm objecting. Mamalujo (talk) 23:47, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
Disagree with Mamalujo. Concur with Will Beback. ----moreno oso (talk) 23:51, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
Books published by highly reputable university presses aren't fringe views. According to whom are forced conversions "spurious claims"?   Will Beback  talk  23:57, 17 May 2010 (UTC)
University of California Press, Yale University Press, Oxford University Press, Fortress Press - these are "fringe scholarship and nonreliable sources"?[3] Says who?   Will Beback  talk  23:45, 19 May 2010 (UTC)
The mere fact that a work is published by a university press does not necessarily mean that it is a reliable source or that it is not promoting a fringe view. A Companion to California History states that this "small group of activist scholars vilified Serra in a manner that did gross violence to history". That means they are not reliable sources, are highly biased and fringe. Mamalujo (talk) 23:51, 19 May 2010 (UTC)
Actually, university presses are considered the most reliable sources. WP:SOURCES: " Academic and peer-reviewed publications are usually the most reliable sources where available, such as in history, medicine, and science,..." I'm going to restore those. The Costo publication is debatable, so I won't restore that one. If Mamalujo has sources that call the university press books fringe or poorly sourced then we can keep discussing those.   Will Beback  talk  00:10, 20 May 2010 (UTC)
That may generally be the case, but there are no shortage of questionable and even fringe views that are published in university presses. Here, the source I mention above is talking about the very books your are seeking to include, Tinker is even mentioned by name. They are not RS. Mamalujo (talk) 23:04, 20 May 2010 (UTC)
My library doesn't have that book, and Tinker isn't mentioned in your excerpt. Could you please cite the assertions that these precise books are unreliable? Otherwise I'll restore them.   Will Beback  talk  23:12, 20 May 2010 (UTC)

Tinker is mentioned by name [4]. And I'm sorry, but you are wrong that all of them must be mentioned by name to cast doubt on their reliability. Clearly, the source is saying this small group of attack dogs who throw historical accuracy to the wind are not RS. Mamalujo (talk) 23:22, 20 May 2010 (UTC)

Nothing shows up there. Even if we leave Tinker off for the moment, that doesn't explain your deletion of the other books:
  • Cook, Sherburne Friend (1976-10-28). The conflict between the California Indian and white civilization. University of California Press. ISBN 9780520031425. 
  • Sandos, James A. (2004). Converting California: Indians and Franciscans in the Missions. Yale University Press. ISBN 9780300101003. 
  • Stannard, David E. (1993). American holocaust: the conquest of the New World. Oxford University Press US. ISBN 9780195085570. 
Meanwhile you added :
  • Fitch, Abigail Hetzel (1914). Junipero Serra: The Man and His Work. 
Is there any evidence that this 96-year old book is still considered a reliable, up-to-date reference? Considering all of the recent scholarship on this topic, books that are older that 20 or 30 years are probably outdated except as primary sources.   Will Beback  talk  23:38, 20 May 2010 (UTC)
I don't know why you can't get throught on that link. I just tried it and it worked fine. As to Sandos, I was mistaken. His work is relatively balanced and sober. I still think Cook's reliability is suspect and I think Guest and others have clearly refuted some of his wilder claims, but in the interest of compromise I have restored him and Sandos. Also, as to Cook, his book is actually a reprint of work from 1940, so the criticisms of the earlier biographies of Serra also apply to his work. As to Stannard, his work is highly polemical, and while the accusation of genocide of Indians in some instances in North America has some credibility, because there is evidence of intent, in the case of the California missions it does not. Also, he only mentions Serra on three pages, so it is not really much of a reference for further reading. The reason I included the Fitch book is that it is an actual biography of the subject, which makes sense in a further reading section. Mamalujo (talk) 18:17, 21 May 2010 (UTC)
If we're discussing the opinions of Mamalujo then they don't count for much here, no offense. If you're going to impeach the work of scholars, then we'd need to see the opinions of other scholars, not anonymous Wikipedia editors.   Will Beback  talk  19:50, 21 May 2010 (UTC)
It's not based on my opinion but on scholarly opinion about the reliability of the work of a group of scholars on this subject. I'm trying to compromise, but if you want to be hostile... As I said, I think there's a real problem with Cook's work, and there are reliable sources that support that doubt, but I was willing to leave it in the spirit of compromise. Mamalujo (talk) 20:30, 21 May 2010 (UTC)
Hostile? I'm not the one who's deleting sourced material. According to which scholars is Stannard an unreliable source? It is cited 420 times, according to Google Scholar.[5]   Will Beback  talk  20:43, 21 May 2010 (UTC)
A Companion to California History referred to a small group of activist scholars who did gross harm to history. It specifically mentions Churchill and Tinker. If you read the literature Churchill and Stannard are commonly spoken of in the same breath and rely on the same spurious evidence for their claims. Stannard is one of these activist scholars. Morover, Stannard's book only mentions Serra on three pages in a highly polemical manner. If it is supposed to be for further reading, why do we want to include dubious works which barely mention the subject and are of suspect reliability? Mamalujo (talk) 21:20, 21 May 2010 (UTC)
We're not talking about Churchill and Tinker. What sources are there that call Stannard an unreliable or fringe source?   Will Beback  talk  21:24, 21 May 2010 (UTC)
Either you're not paying attention or you're being disengenuous. The passage is talking about Stannard. But if I must paint a picture for you, here (re American Holocaust): “Stannard’s book…does not pretend to be objective. Topics are highly selective, generalizations too sweeping…an impressive array of data is collected and arranged to prove the point, rather than to bring out the whole picture.” See Yasuhide Kawashima, review of American Holocaust: The Conquest of the New World, by David E. Stannard, The Western Historical Quarterly 25, no. 4 (Winter 1994): 525-526. Mamalujo (talk) 21:43, 21 May 2010 (UTC)
If you're referring to the Google book that I can't access, then I don't know anything about it except what you've excerpted here, which doesn't mention Stannard. As for your quotation from Kawashima, nobody said Stannard isn't controversial. We don't require sources to be neutral. It's not uncommon for one professor to disagree with another.   Will Beback  talk  22:17, 21 May 2010 (UTC)

Regarding Stannard and Churchill, see Couve de Mourville´s book on Serra, pages 127-130 on the topic of genocide. A totally false reference is given by Stannard, then reproduced by Churchill, regarding Serra being so cruel that he had to be restrained from hanging Indians.

Stannard refers to Palou´s ´Noticias de la Nueva California´ in the English translation by H. E. Bolton, published in 1966. An idea of the shoddy scholarship by these people is that the incident they bring up does not involve Serra at all, but a certain Count de Galvez, a visitor to the mission, who became enraged when the Indians stole some of his equipment and, as Palou describes, had to be restrained by the friars. Somehow, Churchill and Stannard manage to confuse Count Galvez with Junipero Serra.

It is clear to anyone who has read Serra´s writings that these friars, whatever shortcomings they had (they tended to view the natives as grown children) were not in the business of exterminating Indians. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:20, 20 July 2010 (UTC) Yes, only their culture and their legal title to their own land. (talk) 00:11, 30 September 2015 (UTC)


The article is woefully short of material on Serra's legacy, on the beatification process, or on the modern controversies.

  • Since the 1980s nearly everything written about Serra acknowledges that he and other missionaries ushered in a period of extreme hardship and great dislocation for California Indians, and that the methods missinaries used in eighteenth-century California are no longer consistent with a modern and civilized society. Moreover, recent scholarship recognizes like Serra played a significant role in the institutions and practices that brought extreme hardship and pain to native communities.

That's from A Companion to California History. I think we could do well by using it or other reputable reviews to summarize the modern scholarship on this subject.   Will Beback  talk  23:55, 20 May 2010 (UTC)

As I said earlier, I don't have a problem with critical material sourced from works that are reliable and relatively balanced. What I object to are sources that make fringe claims or are so highly polemical as to be unreliable. Mamalujo (talk) 18:20, 21 May 2010 (UTC)

Regarding Stannard and Churchill, see Couve de Mourville´s book on Serra, pages 127-130 on the topic of genocide. A totally false reference is given by Stannard, then reproduced by Churchill, regarding Serra being so cruel that he had to be restrained from hanging Indians.

Stannard refers to Palou´s ´Noticias de la Nueva California´ in the English translation by H. E. Bolton, published in 1966. An idea of the shoddy scholarship by these people is that the incident they bring up does not involve Serra at all, but a certain Count de Galvez, a visitor to the mission, who became enraged when the Indians stole some of his equipment and, as Palou describes, had to be restrained by the friars.

It is clear to anyone who has read Serra´s writings that these friars, whatever shortcomings they had (they tended to view the natives as grown children) were not in the business of exterminating Indians. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:04, 20 July 2010 (UTC)

This could be viewed as cherry-picking depending on your POV. Either way, it hardly makes a difference as history has judged the over-all effect. While Serra, the Missions and friars had good intentions, their application had an effect on Native Americans that could viewed as detrimental. ----moreno oso (talk) 20:16, 20 July 2010 (UTC)

Macaronic title[edit]

What's with the term "Father Presidente" used at least twice to describe Serra? Shouldn't it be "Padre Presidente" or "Father President" (or may be "Father Presider")? Why mix the English and Spanish? It seems contrived and touristy. Rwflammang (talk) 22:35, 30 January 2011 (UTC)


When Serra came to Monterey, California, the first Church he founded was San Carlos the Presidio chapel ( which is my church). After that the mission was relocated to Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo. They are two different Churches, but in the article, they are mixed up a couple times. -Its probably no big deal but since im from the area i thought i should mention this. (talk) 00:57, 31 January 2011 (UTC)Proffessor Dr. Wienerman. 1/30/11

Sorry father Serra was born in Petra, Majorca, Spain. On November 24, 1713 (this year is the 300th. since birth) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:01, 25 January 2013 (UTC)

Father Serra[edit]

Father Serra learned different kinds of langereges — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:25, 5 March 2015 (UTC)

Use of "Father" as a priest title is unacceptable in Wikipedia articles[edit]

In Wikipedia articles, the names of priests should not be preceded by the title Father. Note this guideline concerning use of Father as a title:


Use the Rev. in first reference before the names of Episcopal, Orthodox and Roman Catholic priests. On second reference use only the cleric’s last name. Use Father before a name only in direct quotations.

(Source: Religious titles | Religion Stylebook -- Mksword (talk) 09:23, 14 September 2015 (UTC)

We use our own Manual of Style on Wikipedia. WP:HONORIFIC says, "There are some exceptions: Where an honorific is so commonly attached to a name that the name is rarely found in English reliable sources without it, it should be included. For example, the honorific may be included for "Father Coughlin" (currently at Charles Coughlin) and Mother Teresa." Father Serra is commonly referred to as "Father Serra" in sources. Elizium23 (talk) 00:13, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
I went to the public library and checked the print encyclopedias there. Every one of them has an article about Junípero Serra. In the following-listed encyclopedias, the Junípero Serra articles do not anywhere contain the word "Father":
I found two enclopedias wherein the Junípero Serra article does contain the word "Father":
I submit that the older Catholic encyclopedias use the word "Father" because of their explicit affiliation with Catholicism. Mksword (talk) 06:00, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
There is a section in the Wikipedia Manual of Style on biography called "Honorific prefixes", which states that, in general, no title prefix of any kind should be used. It does note an exception for cases in which the honorific prefix is so commonly used that it becomes part of the name - one example given is "Mother Theresa". From growing up in California, I've always heard "Father Serra", but I'm not sure it's so universally used that it qualifies under this exception. WCCasey (talk) 06:32, 19 September 2015 (UTC)
I second WCCasey's comments. In California schools, he was always referred to as "Father Serra"; this seemed like his common name. Likewise, the missionaries that colonized California are always referred to as the "Mission Fathers". (Or in San Diego baseball circles, the Padres.[6]) The reference above to "the Rev." is inappropriate, and anachronistic by centuries, for a Spanish priest of the 1700s; it should be "Father" or nothing. Some current references using Father Serra: New York Times, New York Times again, Los Angeles Times, KRDO, etc. However, just now in searching I found numerous Google links where the link said "Father" but the text it linked to did not, as if it had been recently removed. Maybe there has been a recent effort to remove "Father" from his name, perhaps inspired by the same controversy that caused California to propose removing his statue from Statuary Hall in Congress. --MelanieN (talk) 21:14, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
"Father Serra" is common usage in academic scholarly journals such as 1) " By the time it [Canonization] began, Father Serra had been dead so long that no living person knew..." [James A. Sandos, "Junipero Serra's Canonization and the Historical Record." American Historical Review (1988): 1253-1269]. 2) "activity in New Spain, however, took place during the late 1780s and early 1790s, just after the death of Father Serra." [Iris H W. Engstrand, "The Enlightenment in Spain: Influences upon New World Policy." The Americas (1985): 436-444.]; 3) ". It was on this question that Father Serra split with Governor Neve...." [Herbert E. Bolton, "The mission as a frontier institution in the Spanish-American colonies." American Historical Review 23.1 (1917): 42-61.]; 4) "The Catholic Church has recently advanced Father Serra to beatification...." [James Riding In, "Without ethics and morality: a historical overview of imperial archaeology and American Indians." Arizona State Law Journal 24 (1992): 11+; 5) "Father Serra hung bells from the trees and called to the local Salinan peoples...." [ Sarah Peelo, "Pottery-making in Spanish California: creating multi-scalar social identity through daily practice." American Antiquity (2011): 642-666.]; 6) "The missions had been established by a group of eighteenth-century Franciscans led by Father Junípero Serra" [Moran, Katherine D. "Catholicism and the Making of the US Pacific." Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era 12#4 (2013): 434-474.] etc etc Rjensen (talk) 22:59, 22 September 2015 (UTC)
The title "Father" connotes that the priest is religiously superior to others who are not accorded that title (notice that a priest directly addressed as "Father" may reply with "Yes, my son"). Further, only the priestly denominations afford that designation; the non-priestly denominations do not. Using aggrandizing titles like "His Eminence" or "Father" for clergy of only a subset of the Christian denominations is inequitable. Albert Barnes (a theologian and Presbyterian pastor) wrote the following in his notes on Matthew 23:9 : "[T]he word 'father' also denotes authority, eminence, superiority, a right to command, and a claim to particular respect. In this sense it is used here. In this sense it belongs eminently to God, and it is not right to give it to men. Christian brethren are equal." (Source: Notes, Explanatory and Practical, on the Gospels by Albert Barnes, page 260.)
Wikipedia is an encyclopedia; it's not a newspaper, TV station, or radio station. Encyclopedias require a higher level of neutrality than what may be acceptable in other media. The universal practice in religion-neutral encyclopedias is to not use "Father" as a title for priests, except when it occurs in a direct quotation.
Compare this with another honorific prefix, "Dr.". A doctorate is a recognition of objectively proven mastery of an academic or professional field. It is customary to address a person who has earned a doctorate as "Dr. Xxxxxx". Yet, in Wikipedia articles, the title "Dr." or "Doctor" is normally not prefixed to the names of persons who have earned doctorates. Example Wikipedia articles: Albert Einstein, Henry Kissinger, Stephen Hawking, Milton Friedman, Richard Feynman, Bertrand Russell, James Watson, Luis Walter Alvarez, William Shockley, Glenn T. Seaborg, Ernest Lawrence, Wilhelm Röntgen, Ivan Pavlov, Andrew Wiles, Hendrik Lorentz
Mksword (talk) 07:20, 23 September 2015 (UTC)
I think that "father" is appropriate in this case as it is in Mother Teresa. Serra is well-known as "Father Serra", much like Mother Teresa. Further he is known for what he did as a Catholic priest -- his "father-hood" is central to his importance. Lastly, "father" does not violate neutrality as it indicates an occupation, a role, that may or may not have moral significance (those who have a negative view of clergy would hear "father" and think negative thoughts).--Iloilo Wanderer (talk) 08:06, 24 September 2015 (UTC)
Certainly, Catholic priests in general are often referred to as "Father Xxxxxx" outside of encyclopedias, especially among Catholics.
Comparison with Mother Teresa: The exception to Wikipedia's proscription of using honorific prefixes requires that the prefix be, effectively, so much a part of the person's name that the person would be unrecognizable to the reader if the prefix were omitted. That is indeed the case with Mother Teresa. Her birth name was Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu. Nobody knows her by that name. Such is not the case with Junipero Serra.
As to communicating the fact that Serra was a Catholic priest: The Serra article does say that he was a priest. The word "priest" occurs 12 times in the article. The article also uses other terms descriptive of Serra's roles and status, such as missionary, friar, and Franciscan.
Denominational bias in calling priests "Father": If Wikipedia were to call Catholic priests "Father", what honorific prefix of equal weight would Wikipedia use for clergy of other denominations?
Occupational bias in calling priests "Father": If Wikipedia were to call Catholic priests "Father" to identify their occupation, what honorific prefix of equal weight would Wikipedia use for people of other occupations? What prefix for archeologists? For therapists? For plumbers? Is the occupation of plumbing less important than that of being a priest?
Note that even the New Catholic Encyclopedia, 2nd edition (2003), in its article on Junipero Serra, does not use the prefix "Father". In addition to all those other encyclopedias (see list, above) that do not. Mksword (talk) 20:10, 24 September 2015 (UTC)
Encyclopedias are WP:TERTIARY sources and not the same as reliable secondary sources used to make these determinations. Elizium23 (talk) 01:27, 25 September 2015 (UTC)
Wikipedia's policies concerning sources relate to sources used to substantiate the factuality of content of Wikipedia articles. What we are discussing in this section (use of "Father" as an honorific prefix) is a matter where no factuality of content is at issue. Mksword (talk) 06:50, 25 September 2015 (UTC)


Pronunciation in Spanish[edit]

The officials who just petitioned Pope Francis to canonize Junipero Serra pronounced his name with the soft "j" that you would expect. The only people pronouncing it with the "xu" sound seem to be the ones tripping over his name. Is there any documentation about the pronunciation of his name, because what's listed in the article seems to be incorrect, based on what we are hearing today.Trumpetrep (talk) 20:53, 23 September 2015 (UTC)

(I'm moving my comments about the English pronunciation to a separate section so as not to interrupt the flow of this conversation. --MelanieN (talk) 00:33, 24 September 2015 (UTC)
It is not wrong, it is Catalan pronunciation. Catalonia, and the Balearic Islands from which Father Serra hailed, has a dual identity as Catalan and Spanish, and is bilingual. So neither pronunciation of the "J" is wrong, it's simply two different languages. Elizium23 (talk) 22:48, 23 September 2015 (UTC)
Wouldn't the Catalan pronunciation be inappropriate for the Castilian form of his name? Daniel the Monk (talk) 00:09, 24 September 2015 (UTC)

Pronunciation in English[edit]

Thanks for calling attention to this, Trumpetrep. The article lists two pronunciations, English and Spanish; I seem to be the only one talking about the English pronunciation so I moved it to a separate section. The article currently lists the English pronunciation as /nˈpɛr ˈsɛrə/, starting with a dʒ - "as in jam". That is dead wrong. No American, of any ethnicity, pronounces his name with a J as in Jam. Americans pronounce it with an H, as hoo-NIP-uh-row. I'm guessing we need a source for this, since this is OR from me, but I think others will confirm it. --MelanieN (talk) 21:09, 23 September 2015 (UTC)

Update re: the English pronunciation: Maybe I should have said that all Californians pronounce it as hoo-NIP-uh-row. I just heard a back-east announcer say JUNE-i-PEAR-oh. To a Californian, that makes us shudder. I'd really like to have the article reflect the pronunciation that is used by English speakers in the state that has actually heard of him. But I realize we need to hear from more people before anything gets changed. --MelanieN (talk) 00:33, 24 September 2015 (UTC)
According to this Pronunciation Guide for the Lectionary (Archdiocese of Chicago: Liturgy Training Publications, 2010 ISBN 1568547919), page 38, it's "hoo-NEE-pay-roh SER-uh". I think that's a reliable source. Jonathunder (talk) 01:16, 24 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, that's what we needed! --MelanieN (talk) 01:19, 24 September 2015 (UTC)

Case against Canonization of Serra[edit]

If there really is some evidence showing that Serra's converts were either sham converts made by intimidation or fraud, or there is evidence that Serra himself was some kind of demented sadist; or that he molested Indian women and boys under his authority; then I for one would like to know about it. That would be utterly damning and certainly grounds for denying him veneration.

But I haven't seen any to date. Only a lot of loose talk about the undisputed fact that he used corporal punishment against his indian converts. But I haven't seen any evidence that he didn't use the same methods against himself and the whites under his authority as well. It was a commonplace of his era. His one great sin would be gross insensitivity to the Indian culture where such methods were considered both cruel and intolerable; and which indeed led to several revolts in the missions, and to the death of both indians and missionaries. Probably he is still doing time in Purgatory for that.

But not for corporal punishment: "If you endure punishment, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not discipline? But if you are without correction, of which all have become partakers, then you are bastards and not sons." Hebrews 12:7-8

It's so hard to be politically correct ahead of your time.

IMHO he was doing the best he could according to his own lights, and those of his times. Perhaps I should stop reading Shakespeare on account of he was both a racist and an anti-Semite, as appears from his plays. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:25, 24 September 2015 (UTC)

There is no evidence, says the above, that he did not use corporal punishment on himself and on whites. But what is the evidence that he _did_? Corporal punishment on himself?
I'm sure he was doing what he thought was right. But was it in fact right, by today's standards (since he's being canonized in 2015)? Shakespeare, whatever his faults, has not been proposed for canonization. deisenbe (talk) 00:24, 30 September 2015 (UTC)

By the mid-eighteenth century witch-hunting was considered a symptom of mass hysteria at best in the enlightened portion of the Western world and yet Serra was apparently pursuing it with a vigor that would have pleased King James, who may have seen a production of "the Scottish play" and approved the portrayal of the Weird Sisters some hundred and fifty years earlier. How many women died because of this sort of paranoid fanaticism and how much persecution of this sort might Serra have been responsible for? To me this guy sounds like a real piece of work and the political correctness here lies in the desire to find a minimally acceptable Latino who worked within current U.S. borders to canonize, rather than someone who might have actually behaved the way most people think of (a) Christ as behaving. As for Shakespeare, no one is making it an article of faith (yet, I think) that Bill has the ear of the Almighty,that burning candles to him will have an effect on one's sciatica, or that his legacy is one of simple, unalloyed, and uncomplicated good for the Christian faith and yet another uplifting chapter in the history of the Western conquest of the Americas (see "The Tempest" or better yet give it a close reading.) But of course if you think Shakespeare must have been a racist, an anti-semite, and a murderer because he created characters who were racists, anti-semites and murderers then you are probably one of those people who think Nabokov was a paedophile who is currently enduring an otherlife somewhere even less comfortable than Purgatory. So is Serra in in heaven or only halfway there? I suspect that to a certain degree he's still in California, which has sheltered many a zealot since his day and that many a zealot will appear at this site to defend his legacy in a manner almost as atavistic as a witch-hunter in the Age of Reason and perhaps even enough to make his tormented (or blessed) shade sigh in approval. (talk) 01:15, 25 September 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 24 September 2015[edit]

Please change covert to convert.see this line in article: The new mission lacked Indians to covert. should be: The new mission lacked Indians to convert.

2601:602:8402:118B:0:0:0:5A94 (talk) 22:24, 24 September 2015 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done Stickee (talk) 22:34, 24 September 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 25 September 2015[edit]

The 48th citation URL has a typo. It should be, not Millennial Dan (talk) 02:11, 26 September 2015 (UTC)

 Done Thank you. --MelanieN (talk) 23:16, 20 October 2015 (UTC)

Serra's CA statue - synthesis[edit]

Please reader WP:OR, specifically, this part: "Do not combine material from multiple sources to reach or imply a conclusion not explicitly stated by any of the sources." You are taking material from one source that says Lara is gay, and a second source which says Ride is gay, and combining it with yet a third sources that says Lara proposed a bill to replace Serra's statue with Ride's to imply that the motivation for doing that was Lara's sexual identity. WP:SYNTH doesn't get any worse than this. Bad Dryer (talk) 00:11, 4 December 2015 (UTC)

You don't understand the concept of WP:OR, which states "The phrase "original research" (OR) is used on Wikipedia to refer to material—such as facts, allegations, and ideas—for which no reliable, published sources exist". There is ample sourcing for both additions that I made, and it is relevant given Lara's proposition to remove the statue from the capitol. I made NO conclusion within the original text, nor do my citations contradict the phrasing by adding the two citations. You need to review WP:OR.Trinacrialucente (talk) 00:24, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
I have added a reference from a reliable secondary source which does the analysis just fine. Elizium23 (talk) 00:48, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Trinacrialucente, you need to stop adding this. It is definitely Original Research/Synthesis, and now you are edit warring; if you keep that up you can be blocked from editing. Here is why these additions do not belong in this article: Yes, Lara proposed removing the statue. Yes, Lara is gay. Yes, Sally Ride was gay. Those are three completely separate facts, and no Reliable Source has drawn a conclusion that connects them. Unless a Reliable Source mentions their orientation as relevant to Serra and his statue, the claim or the implication does not belong in the article. --MelanieN (talk) 00:52, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
I have met your burden of proof. Elizium23 (talk) 00:56, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
@MelanieN: Looks like other editors disagree with you. Trinacrialucente (talk) 00:58, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Not 'other editors', just someone else who doesn't understand OR, Synth and POV. Do not add this again, especially without consensus. Dave Dial (talk) 01:00, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Please read WP:NEWSBLOG. Keating is President Emeritus of Catholic Answers, and has bona fide editorial credentials. Elizium23 (talk) 01:02, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Catholic Answers is not a news blog ("with a reputation for fact checking and accuracy"). It is a POV blog. Its stated editorial goal is "To explain and defend the Faith". Keating's position as founder and senior fellow of the blog does nothing to add to his credibility, or its credibility. In fact, it is basically self-published material. --MelanieN (talk) 01:18, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Elizium23, if you are referring to this reference, that is not a reliable source. It is an op/ed piece from a POV blog. Please review WP:RS. I will remove the information. Please to not add it again unless some Reliable Source makes the connection. --MelanieN (talk) 00:58, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
It actually has a sterling reputation for fact-checking and editorial oversight. It is the most respected Catholic apologetics site on the Internet. They publish a magazine and run over two hours of live radio each day, and have their own publishing house. They are overwhelmingly accurate for everything relating to Catholicism; I would say they are the most-reliable reliable source for anything Catholic that could be had on the Internet. Much more accurate than any secular newspaper or magazine. Elizium23 (talk) 01:24, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
@DD2K: Dismissing another editor like that is not "good faith" on your part, nor is it at all civil. You are seriously running afoul of WP:OR and the spirit of Wikipedia by saying "do not add this again", since you are "just another editor" here and have no authority to dictate. If you'd like to participate in a discussion then of course this is the forum. If you have some mistaken idea that your interpretations of this topic or WP:OR are any more binding than any other editor, then I would suggest you take the time to review WP:OR or something more productive.Trinacrialucente (talk) 01:11, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Note: Three of you have now been warned against edit warring. Be aware that edit warring can cause you to be blocked from editing. Since the new information has been challenged, the article should be left as it was before, unless and until consensus is reached here to add the new material. --MelanieN (talk) 01:08, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
  • I'm not going to keep discussing this here, since this is obviously OR, Synth and POV. Don't re-add the disputed material without Talk page consensus. In fact, it's more than disputed, it's against Wiki policies. A group of editors can form a consensus, but they cannot add material in an article that violates Wiki policies. The edit here definitely does that, so just forget about it. Dave Dial (talk) 01:16, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Well, you're wrong. And here is the "smoking gun" as it were: "Lara also called Ride a role model for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. “For the first time ever, LGBT youths will see themselves in Statuary Hall,” Lara said during the debate." This quote is referenced here and here Therefore, it is relevant as Lara himself references Sally Ride in the context of the LGBT community. Not sure what else we need here.Trinacrialucente (talk) 01:17, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
And not like another citation on the topic is needed, but this NYTimes article mentions Lara's sexuality within the same paragraph of his above-mentioned quote. So, not synth at all. Ricardo Lara, the California state senator who put forward the resolution to memorialize the astronaut, said, “Sally Ride will be the first woman to represent California and the first person to represent the L.G.B.T. community in the Capitol.” Mr. Lara, a Catholic >b>who is openly gay, added, “It’s about modernizing our heroes.” — Preceding unsigned comment added by Trinacrialucente (talkcontribs) 01:20, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
And not like another citation on the topic is needed, but this NYTimes article mentions Lara's sexuality within the same paragraph of his above-mentioned quote. So, not synth at all. Ricardo Lara, the California state senator who put forward the resolution to memorialize the astronaut, said, “Sally Ride will be the first woman to represent California and the first person to represent the L.G.B.T. community in the Capitol.” Mr. Lara, a Catholic who is openly gay, added, “It’s about modernizing our heroes.” guys lost this one.Trinacrialucente (talk) 01:23, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict x2) OK, now we're getting somewhere. Those are sources, including Lara himself, that clearly draw the connection. Let me work on a sentence that does not use synthesis like the previous versions, but actually cites the facts. Give me a few minutes. --MelanieN (talk) 01:24, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
you do that.Trinacrialucente (talk) 01:25, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Are you people being purposely obtuse? Nobody is arguing about the sexuality of either person, just that it has NOTHING to do with Serra or the statue debate. Period. ffs. Dave Dial (talk) 01:26, 4 December 2015 (UTC)

OK, now that we have reliable sourcing, I propose to add this sentence to the article: "Lara, who is gay, praised Ride as the first American woman in space and as a role model for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.[2]"

OK with everybody? --MelanieN (talk) 01:35, 4 December 2015 (UTC)

P.S. Don't worry about that first reference; it's a leftover from somewhere higher on the page and won't appear in the article. --MelanieN (talk) 01:37, 4 December 2015 (UTC)

@MelanieN: not sure who that "purposely obtuse" reference was towards from user DD2K. But as an admin, maybe you should let the user in question know that it is not at all civil? Do you think it advanced this topic or discussion?Trinacrialucente (talk) 01:39, 4 December 2015 (UTC) @MelanieN:Also, I'm fine with your edit...however I would caution to add "openly gay" (not just gay) since a) that's what the articles say and b) you wouldn't want anyone coming after you saying you were trying to "out" him.Trinacrialucente (talk) 01:46, 4 December 2015 (UTC)

OK, let's try this version, based on the NYT article: "Lara, a Catholic who is openly gay, praised Ride as the first American woman in space and as a role model for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.[1][2]"
That's much better, Melanie. But perhaps the role model is for more than her sexuality, as the other Senators have stated. More specifically Sen. Jackson who said:

“She was a hero and she inspired girls and women to pursue their interest in math and science,” said another lawmaker, Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara)

Not that your suggestion is not pretty good, but perhaps a little better to work in that fact that young girls can look up to Ride and be inspired to do well in those subjects. Dave Dial (talk) 02:19, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
  1. ^ McGreevy, Patrick (April 13, 2015). "State Senate calls for swapping Father Serra statue with one of Sally Ride". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 4 December 2015. California Seeks to Make Way for Statue of Sally Ride in U.S. Capitol
  2. ^ Pogash, Carol (April 5, 2015). "California Seeks to Make Way for Statue of Sally Ride in U.S. Capitol". New York Times. Retrieved 4 December 2015. 
DD2K: Yes, there were quotes from other people, and I liked Senator's Jackson's quote; in fact that is what I personally consider to be her greatest contribution, namely, her efforts to interest girls in science. But I thought a single sentence, sourced to the measure's author, was enough to cover the subject of why Ride was picked, without making it WP:UNDUE, and I couldn't find where Lara himself talked about that. --MelanieN (talk) 02:37, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
@MelanieN: I'm fine with your second edit as well. And NOT trying to be intentionally nit-picky, but I just did an extensive search on Lara's other sources say he's Catholic (including his page on Wikipedia...not like that matters/more of just an FYI), while you will find uncountable sources affirming he is that part is not in dispute. Anyway, I'm in favor of the edit, but suggest proceed with caution.Trinacrialucente (talk) 02:20, 4 December 2015 (UTC)

I think if there is some mention of this, it needs to be tweaked more. There are many members of the Senate that are in favor of the Bill that do not belong to the LGBTQ community. Although we get further into the issue and less about Serra himself the more context that is added. Which is why it doesn't belong in this article at all. Dave Dial (talk) 01:56, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Again, you're wrong. The Wikipedia article is about Saint Junipero. The section is about his statue in the Capitol and proposed removal by Lara in favor of a statue of Rice. In ALL THREE ARTICLES I sourced, Lara mentions his motives for replacing the statue as to "give an example for LGBT youth", and his own sexuality is mentioned. Ergo, if we are to talk about this statue of Saint Junipero's proposed replacement and name Lara specifically, the rest of the info is pertinent. You are the only one here that seems unable to follow.Trinacrialucente (talk) 02:07, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Dave Dial, Now you're the one who is synthesizing. The sentence as proposed does not imply that other members of the Senate who favor it belong to the LGBTQ community. As for "doesn't belong in this article" - by the time something has been reported by the Los Angeles Times and the New York Times, it's hard to argue that it doesn't belong in Wikipedia. --MelanieN (talk) 02:37, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
P.S. I'm going out for the evening; I will put the sentence into the article when I get back, if it has consensus. If not I will continue to work on it then. --MelanieN (talk) 02:47, 4 December 2015 (UTC)

A comment for all of you to share among yourselves: There is a lesson here, and it is this: Wikipedia is not a contest, with the goal of declaring winners and losers. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, with the goal of accuracy. Accuracy is determined by Reliable Sources, not by our opinions, not even by whether our opinions turn out to be right or wrong; see WP:Verifiability, not truth. The next time you feel like getting into an edit war over something, don't. Instead, go to the talk page and prove your point with independent reliable sources. And then share in the common task of putting something accurate and verified into the article. --MelanieN (talk) 02:42, 4 December 2015 (UTC)

I think I'll add to the lesson and say admins shouldn't simply admonish or discipline people they initially disagree with and overlook bad/uncivil behavior such as an editor calling someone "obtuse" or dismissing their opinions during a discussion.Trinacrialucente (talk) 02:49, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Actually, I thought " guys lost this one" and "you do that" was just as bad. Not to mention "Again, you're wrong." Let's just concentrate on the task at hand - improving the encyclopedia - rather than pointing fingers and trying to get each other in trouble. --MelanieN (talk) 05:21, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Wait..what??? What is/was wrong with saying "you do that"?? I was concurring/giving consent like saying "go for it", "be my guest", "sounds good" or in later comments "I'm fine with..." Geeze. You people never cease to amaze me how far you will dig and twist things to fit your preconceived view. And maybe if you two ( BOTH were equally distasteful) had not come after anyone with a dissenting opinion with feigned absolutes as if WP:SYNTH were some constitutional ruling (as you now was very subjective) we could have had a good dialogue from the beginning. Maybe there's yet another lesson in there.Trinacrialucente (talk) 17:58, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
And to reiterate, I'm fine with either the first or second editTrinacrialucente (talk) 02:52, 4 December 2015 (UTC)
Adding it to the article. --MelanieN (talk) 05:21, 4 December 2015 (UTC)