Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Christianity/Noticeboard/Archive 9

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Archive 5 Archive 7 Archive 8 Archive 9 Archive 10


Urgent: comments requested at God -- TEST

Ambox warning pn.svg

Page: God (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs)
Discussion: Is God male or female?

Comments are urgently requested at the afore mentioned page. We have a discussion which requires informed comments from those familiar with the topic of this discussion. Your help at your earliest convenience will be appreciated. – Lionel (talk) 09:23, 28 February 2012 (UTC)

Urgent: comments requested at The Exodus

Ambox warning pn.svg

Page: The Exodus (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs)

The Exodus currently pushes a strong biblical minimalist POV. It claims the views of a minority of scholars are something near "consensus". I have tried to fix the problem but a couple of users (PiCo in particular) simply revert edits, and ignore sources that dispute their claims. I am not going to waste my time with it or any of these religion articles if the other editors are going to be so disrespectful and one-sided.Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 01:56, 6 March 2012 (UTC)

Quark--I noticed you posted about this before. It was around the time when we were transitioning from WT:X to WT:XNB, and maybe got lost in the shuffle. I've posted it as an Urgent issue so we can get some expert attention for this. – Lionel (talk) 05:28, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
PiCo has been editing extensively (and almost exclusively) the last couple weeks. Are their changes within policy and well sourced? – Lionel (talk) 05:41, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
I think the majority of my edits have been changing the existing citations from one system to another system, without touching content. One or two might have gone further, but I think not much further. PiCo (talk) 00:51, 7 March 2012 (UTC)
No the article is not well sourced. Several key points cite biblical minimalists like William Dever, while others cite dead links or articles written nearly a century ago. Some statements (i.e. "The consensus among biblical scholars today is that there was never any exodus of the proportions described in the Bible") are just flat wrong. Many wrong statements in the article have no citation at all, while others use citations that say something else entirely. If you look at the second paragraph of the intro you will see this. Works by Hoffmeier and Kitchen are cited as representing the "minority" viewpoint, even though those cited books don't say that at all. The editor who added that just assumed that their viewpoint is minority without citation. Really none of the works cited make the sweeping generalizations about consensus or majority/minority viewpoints that the article does.
The problem with this article is deeper than just some bad citations. Scholarly opinion on the exodus can be broadly segmented into conservative and non-conservative opinion (in terms of sheer numbers, most scholars are conservative). Non-conservative views range from a nearly traditional interpretation to outright biblical minimalism. The entire section The_Exodus#Historicity_debate is one long argument for a skeptical or even minimalist position. It completely ignores the work of most scholars (conservatives) whose views and scholarship are more likely to support the traditionalist viewpoints. What this article needs to do is discuss both conservative and non-conservative views, and eliminate these sweeping claims of "consensus" that the sources don't support. I am more than willing to make these edits, but if I do certain editors (PiCo in particular) will simply revert my edits.Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 07:00, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
Why don't we start small and work our way up. What specific change could you propose that would improve the article and meet with little resistance from PiCo? – Lionel (talk) 07:52, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
The second paragraph says: "The archaeological evidence of the largely indigenous origins of Israel is "overwhelming," and leaves "no room for an Exodus from Egypt or a 40-year pilgrimage through the Sinai wilderness."[1] A common hypothesis among biblical scholars today is that the first major comprehensive draft of the Pentateuch (the series of books containing the exodus story) was composed in the late 7th or the 6th century BC and later expanded into a work very like the one we have today.[2] A minority of scholars assumes that this has yet older sources that can be traced to a genuine tradition of the Bronze Age collapse of the 13th century BC.[3]"
The first sentence should be deleted outright. Its source is the biblical minimalist William Dever. According to an article PiCo accepts [1] there are only about a half-dozen productive scholars advancing minimalist arguments regularly in papers and articles. Most scholars don't agree with the Dever's claim (even most non-conservatives don't). This is a fringe opinion made to look like a common one. Instead it should be replaced with "Currently, the traditional picture of the exodus has been questioned and modified, either slightly or radically, or it has even been downright rejected." The source is "Introduction to the Old Testament" by Tremper Longman and Raymond B. Dillard. The last sentence should be changed to say that "Conservative and traditionalist scholars often argue that the exodus narratives originated close to the event itself" and the same source could be used along with Kitchen and Hoffmeire.Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 15:17, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
The author in question is William G. Dever and the source is a 2003 book which is not written from a minimalist perspective. It's a concern that Quarkgluonsoup is unaware of this - he certainly shouldn't be reverting material without understanding it. See "Giving the sense: understanding and using Old Testament historical texts By Michael A. Grisanti, David M. Howard" which says " William G. Dever makes similar points, and has mounted the most sustained assault on minimalist positions. He offers his own, more positive reconstructions of Israel's life and society, using both the Bible and archaeological remains.75 - the footnote reads "William G. Dcvcr, What Did the Biblical Writers Know and When Did They Know It? What A rchae- ology Can Tell Us About the Reality of Israel (Grand Rapids: Ecrdnuns. 2001); and idem. Who were the early Israelites and where Did They Come From? (Grand Kapids: Eerdmans, 2003). Dever take^s great pains to distance himself from "fundamentalists." He states that "I am not a theist, and indeed remain a secular humanist" (What Did the Biblical Writers Know, x), but he nevertheless takes a much more positive view of the reality of ancient Israel than do minimalist scholars." talkcontribs) 16:20, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
And surely the discussion should start at the talk page of the article? This is the sort of thing that concerned me about the 'emergency button' - it should not be used in this way. And it's hardly an emergency, the discussion has gone on for some time. Dougweller (talk) 16:24, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
@Doug--this is a novel feature which exists nowhere else and we'll have to figure out how to make it work... Just a reminder: this wasn't my idea (although I think it's a good idea). – Lionel (talk) 07:30, 7 March 2012 (UTC)
Lionel, see what I mean? PiCo and Doug have been the source of the problem over there. I made the edit and Doug simply reverted it.[2] Notice that he reverted the entire edit, not just the part he objects to above. Will you take a look at the edit he just reverted and tell me if you find anything objectionable?Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 16:55, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
This is a good issue for this urgent noticeboard, since the issue stems from just a couple of editors. It needs the attention of more editors, and this is the place for that.Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 17:07, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
So no comment on the actual question of Dever, just an attack on me? In the last 12 months I've edited the article I think 11 times. Mainly reverting IPs and/or original research, using self-published books, etc. You have just ignored WP:BRD I see. this time removing it with a different reason. You're probably still upset because everyone agreed that the Bronze age stuff didn't belong. Dougweller (talk) 17:58, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
I like how you don't bother to address the question about your reversion above. Dever's quote is already in the article so it is irrelevant in the intro.Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 18:08, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
I didn't see a question. Your latest edit isn't relevant directly to BRD (which would apply if you removed the material I restored), what you've done is remove all mention of archaeology from the lead. Are you going to argue that the lead shouldn't mention the lack of archaeological evidence? Do you now agree that your minimalist comment in regards to the source is incorrect? Dougweller (talk) 18:18, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
The Dever quote says nothing about the archaeological evidence of the exodus, but of Dever's own view of "the largely indigenous origins of Israel" (which is certainly a minority viewpoint) and irrelevant here. You want a discussion of the archaeology of the exodus? Fine, but the discussion has to discuss all scholarly views, not just one.Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 18:28, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
My original request was simply for a "specific change" that would not be controversial. Once Quark had made the identification I was going to go to the article--not deliberate here. So much for that, lol.– Lionel (talk) 07:30, 7 March 2012 (UTC)

Not sure if this belongs here but the sentence, "The archaeological evidence of the largely indigenous origins of Israel is "overwhelming," and leaves "no room for an Exodus from Egypt or a 40-year pilgrimage through the Sinai wilderness," is also at Jewish history. Should it be removed? Portillo (talk) 02:20, 6 October 2012 (UTC)

Why shouldn't this be discussed at Talk: The Exodus? Anyway, I see nothing wrong with a little redundancy - the sentence is relevant to the historicity of the Exodus as well as to Jewish history. Huon (talk) 03:17, 6 October 2012 (UTC)

Not the appropriate place for this discussion

Quarkgluonsoup has just posted to Talk:The Exodus to say that the discussion will continue here. That's clearly another inappropriate use of this subpage. Dougweller (talk) 19:18, 6 March 2012 (UTC)

No this is exactly the right place. Your antagonism over a little edit is a perfect example of why. Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 19:20, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
I agree with Dougweller - editors watching this noticeboard have been informed of the discussion at Talk:The Exodus and can easily join it there. But the place to resolve a content dispute on a single article is by default that article's talk page. In particular, keeping the discussion there instead of here will make it much easier to find if we later have a similar discussion again. Huon (talk) 19:27, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
And the editors there can come here. We need more editors to help, and prior efforts to bring them over from this board have failed to do so, so we will discuss this here.Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 19:41, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
I also agree with Dougweller and Huon. Discussion about an article's content should take place on that article's talk page, and not in some dark corner of a project page. If you have questions about sources or policies, you can ask at WP:RSN, WP:POVN, WP:NORN, WP:FTN, or file and RfC. Dominus Vobisdu (talk) 20:57, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
This noticeboard is for issues like the current one.Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 21:31, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
No. It's for notifying interested users about discussions, not for holding these discussions. That's why it's called a noticeboard, not a discussion forum. Huon (talk) 22:08, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
And yet Lionel opened this discussion here (not there) and I concur with that decision.Quarkgluonsoup (talk) 23:08, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
Yes this noticeboard is for announcing issues to interested editors. That said editors can discuss whatever they want whereever they want. It happens all of the time. However editors must be aware that this noticeboard can generate no consensus whatsoever regarding content at a particular article. What I'm saying is that this discussion here carries no weight at Exodus. – Lionel (talk) 05:47, 7 March 2012 (UTC)

Joseph Kony Wiki Article

Urgent: comments requested at Joseph Kony

Ambox warning pn.svg

Page: Joseph Kony (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs)
Discussion: Pseudo-Christianity

Comments are urgently requested at the afore mentioned page. We have a discussion which requires informed comments from those familiar with the topic of this discussion. Your help at your earliest convenience will be appreciated. – USGrant7 (talk) 11:31, 26 March 2012 (UTC)

Urgent: comments requested at List of scandals involving evangelical Christians

Ambox warning pn.svg

Page: List of scandals involving evangelical Christians (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs)
Discussion: Talk:List_of_scandals_involving_evangelical_Christians#Issues_with_the_Jason_Russell_Section

I'm slightly uncomfortable with a page named as such, but besides that there seems to be an article on the guy behind the Kony 2012. The section on Jason Russell. Has quite a few issues, which I've brought up in the discussion. I would love your opinion on that. Since I feel the section on this in the present article is grossly erroneous. Since this is under the purview of wikiproject christianity I would love your poinions on that.

Comments are urgently requested at the afore mentioned page. We have a discussion which requires informed comments from those familiar with the topic of this discussion. Your help at your earliest convenience will be appreciated. Sanju87 (talk) 14:54, 18 June 2012 (UTC)

F. C. D. Wyneken

Friends, I noticed that much material here was deleted because it substantially copied my article, "Wyneken as Missionary." I give my permission to copy from my article as much as is needed to tell his story, or from my other works for that matter. It has been a long time since I have edited here, so I cannot figure out how to restore it. Would someone do so or, even better, expand the article based on it? It is really busy here as we approach the end of an academic year. Thanks! --CTSWyneken(talk)

Template discussion

Please see Template talk:Christianity#"Eastern Catholic" is not a denomination for a discussion. Thank you. Elizium23 (talk) 03:59, 19 October 2012 (UTC)


Has anyone else noticed the Homiletics article is largely slanted catholic?'s as if they never heard of Andrew Blackwood.--ColonelHenry (talk) 22:23, 22 September 2013 (UTC)

Wikimedia commons has a pdf copy of the first volume of the Hastings Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, which has a rather lengthy article on apologetics that I am actually today starting to turn into a version which can be added to WikiSource. Its probably the longest of the Public Domain articles on apologetics there, although I strongly suspect that at least some of the other sources in Category:Religious encyclopedias have articles as well. And I am, actually, still trying to add more, although I am experiencing some network problems regarding uploading today. I do think that taken as a group, though, the various reference sources there should be able to help fix any balance considerations on that article, and possibly several others as well. John Carter (talk) 00:10, 23 September 2013 (UTC)
  • I'll take a look at them. Just on a general standpoint, something that's been on my mind, would it be worth considering splitting the article up and creating perhaps Catholic homiletics and trying to make a summary article out of Homiletics?--ColonelHenry (talk) 03:27, 23 September 2013 (UTC)
No, and as regards the early church that would be rather misleading, wouldn't it? Some of the old EB & Catholic Encyclopedia material can just be dropped, & no doubt Orthodox homiletics deserve more. Johnbod (talk) 15:27, 25 September 2013 (UTC)
  • As well as the Protestant and Anglican traditions. I mentioned Rev. Blackwood from Princeton Theological Seminary above because it seems as soon as he died in the 1960s his work died with him--despite that he was probably the leading voice in the 20th-century Calvinist tradition.--ColonelHenry (talk) 16:04, 25 September 2013 (UTC)
  • If there were clear evidence in independent reliable sources that, for instance, Lutheran, or Seventh-day Adventist, or Mormon, or whatever, homiletics were significantly different in some way from mainstream Christian/Catholic/Orthodox/etc. homiletics, and described them in detail, then, maybe, spinout articles might make sense. To date, I ain't seen them. Now, this is not saying that a List of Lutheran homilists (is that a word?) or similar might not be unreasonable. But, at this point, I haven't seen the evidence which would indicate to me that the differences in apologetics between groups is itself necessary notable enough for separate content, other than perhaps stand-alone lists, and even then it can become problematic how to define, for instance, C. S. Lewis, whose works were clearly written by an Anglican, but whose apologetics works are more or less appropriate to many other groups as well. John Carter (talk) 15:28, 26 September 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/Holy Incense

Dear Christians: A lot of work has been put into the above Afc submission; can someone here have a look at it? It seems to me that it at least needs some context at the beginning, but I know little about this subject. —Anne Delong (talk) 11:50, 23 September 2013 (UTC)

Category:New scheme for Bishops in Ireland

Category:New scheme for Bishops in Ireland, which is within the scope of this WikiProject, has been nominated for possible deletion, merging, or renaming. If you would like to participate in the discussion, you are invited to add your comments at the category's entry on the Categories for discussion page. Here is the proposal:

Liz Read! Talk! 01:20, 24 September 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/John Rester Zodrow

Dear Christianity experts: The above article up for review at Afc may be of interest. —Anne Delong (talk) 03:41, 24 September 2013 (UTC)

GAN for New Brunswick Theological Seminary

If anyone from this WikiProject wants to take a whack at a GA review for New Brunswick Theological Seminary, the Reformed Church in America's seminary in New Brunswick, New Jersey, I'd appreciate it. --ColonelHenry (talk) 14:44, 24 September 2013 (UTC)

Restoring God's Name to Old and New Testaments

         Jehovan In NT + Links

I find it interesting that so much energy has been put forth to put God's name out of the NT, AND the whole Bible in general! How can this be when the name is so important? We see that in Ex. 6:3, Ex. 3:15, Ps. 83:18, Isa. 42:8, that it is emphatic that the name is sacred to all followers of God. Jesus, who is a form of the name of Jehovah (yes it's another way of putting Jehovah in the NT) holds it in the most sacred of terms in our Lord's prayer! "Hallowed by thy name."! "You must pray this way"! So, we know that Jesus not only upheld it, he promoted it! John. 17:6.

So, why has so much energy been in taking the name out of the scriptures old and new testament alike? We know for sure that the divine tetragrammaton is there in the old, and translators had no problem removing it and subsituting LORD, don't we? A few have left Jehovah in a few verses! Why not just take the whole kit and kaboodle out if your going to do that?? Of course the detractors are going to not highlight that, but go on to hone in on the NT, and say the WT added the name in! How can they when the name is already in??!! Rev. 19: 1,3,4,6 have Jah in all of the Bibles! Did the people who subsituted Lord for Jehovah forget a few verses? Obviously they did! Of course they didn't quite put it together that Jesus is a form of Jehovah and that every time you see Jesus in the scriptures they are basically taking and infusing the tetragrammaton in their NT versions!

The history is very interesting as far as the Bible itself and manuscripts. People want to hold fast that the Bible is the Bible and God wouldn't allow for any shenanigans for their Bibles. What do we see? We see that through bias, Bibles have added scriptures like I John 5:7 to make a doctrine stronger that they believe in! They added a whole chapter to a gospel for some reason. They so mis-interpreted Phil. 2 to make a doctrine appear their way. So, why wouldn't or couldn't they just make Lord (kyrios) in translations to do the same? One thing is, we don't know the ultimate provenance because there is no manuscripts dating back to the apostles and what they wrote, so no one can say 'it is' because of such an impossible high degree of provenance. I find the history of the church a good starting point as brought out by the researchers whose links I provided, such as 'not saying a proper name for God' to taking on some of the Jewish traditions instead of say like partaking in the Lord's evening meal once a year. So, we must look very carefully at what might have happened with the death of the apostles and what could have been done with the manuscripts. Does one think that if they beheaded Paul, that they might have a little to say with his writings? Might have been a good burn party at a gladiator arena, right? Some suggest that it was just old and withered out. I do tend to disagree, and that enemies of the church would have loved to wreak havoc on them. Paul was able to give us clues with all the apostasy and anti-christ sentiment in his writings warned us in the sternest of terms. With the Christians having to battle in thought the Jewish traditions especially with their divine name, Jehovah, and historians have noted this to be quite a dramatic division; it's no stretch to see how they might have and most undoubtedly were influenced not to use Jehovah, as some of the history of the links I provided were able to tell us.

I find that because of this; Jehovah the main speaker and inspirer of Revelation, Rev. 1:1 would provide us the needed assurance that his name is what it is, and is quite holy by the way the Revelation is written. We, already know that they 4 times used in Rev. 19 is one way he could have saw the future and would be able to maintain the correctness of his Word! By what else? We have many scriptures! Rev. 4:8, Rev. 11:17, Rev. 14:1, and Rev. 15:4 all attest to his almightiness and great name being in the NT, all alive and well. Assuredly when the NT quotes the great tetragrammaton from the OT, they we know that it is what the apostles put in there. They would not be influenced by traditions or the early influences of the enemies of the church or ones that would want to supersede them in authority! We know that the NWT is oh so correct in their renderings as well as other translations that these links provide us with! And we can be assured that when the prophets like Ezekeil state that "the nations shal know that I am Jehovah" as a future reference, that it has come true with the restoring and the proclamation of his great and holy name! God's purpose and Word cannot be denied if one is a truth seeker.

I will try to get the links for you in one spot again. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Curtjester1 (talkcontribs) 13:51, 25 September 2013 (UTC)

We already discussed this regarding the use of Jehovah or Yahweh or YHWH at the Book of Job. Take your POV agenda-pushing name arguments elsewhere. --ColonelHenry (talk) 14:52, 25 September 2013 (UTC)

Move of Gospel

It looks like there have been several suggested moves for the Gospel article and there is one more at on the Gospel Talk Page being discussed. Liz Read! Talk! 13:20, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

Nefarious: Merchant of Souls

The article about the Christian film Nefarious: Merchant of Souls has an ongoing featured article candidacy here. Any constructive comments you would be willing to provide there would be greatly appreciated. Neelix (talk) 14:53, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

  • @Neelix: - I'll be glad to take a look at it later today. --ColonelHenry (talk) 15:13, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
Thanks, Henry! Neelix (talk) 15:21, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

Evangelism article needs to be updated

The evangelism article needs to be updated to include the child evangelism movement, the 4/14 Window and the 10/40 Window. In addition, Internet evangelism and Internet evangelism organizations articles need to be created. Martin484 (talk) 07:41, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

  • @Martin484: - Why? Simple question, but most of these articles seem to lack any notability because the sources for them are not independent of the subject. 10/40 Window seems to be notable (prima facie), but still appears to be a "flash-in-the-pan" idea. But for the others, can you point to significant, independent coverage in reliable sources that discuss these topics--sources that are not connected with the subject? Because as I see it, these are appropriate to bring up for AfD. Bring some reliable sources and someone here could consider it. Absent any sources, I'm tempted to AfD it myself.--ColonelHenry (talk) 13:23, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
The best way to indicate that the evangelism article needs to be changed to include such material is to find material directly relating to the subject of evangelism in and of itself which give these particular forms of evangelism enough attention and discussion to indicate that inclusion of material related to them would meet WP:WEIGHT concerns, and you haven't here done that. Regarding the articles which you propose for creation, you may be right that they need to exist, but it would help a lot if you were to indicate which reliable sources as per WP:RS give the subjects sufficient coverage to establish their notability as per WP:NOTABILITY. And, unfortunately, there are still quite a few significant articles which have established notability and weight which we still don't have. If you can provide indicators of the sources which could be used for the proposed articles, that would help a lot. John Carter (talk) 15:02, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

Proposed deletion of Julius Nam

Ambox warning yellow.svg

The article Julius Nam has been proposed for deletion because of the following concern:

The subject of this Biography of a Living Person has requested deletion (in a private email to myself on July 18, 2013). He is a "relatively unknown subject" (WP:BLPREQUESTDELETE), and the sources for the article are not great. The material is also outdated as the subject no longer has any involvement with the Adventist Church. I (the deletion nominee) am the creator of the page, and its main contributor.

While all constructive contributions to Wikipedia are appreciated, content or articles may be deleted for any of several reasons.

You may prevent the proposed deletion by removing the {{proposed deletion/dated}} notice, but please explain why in your edit summary or on the article's talk page.

Please consider improving the article to address the issues raised. Removing {{proposed deletion/dated}} will stop the proposed deletion process, but other deletion processes exist. In particular, the speedy deletion process can result in deletion without discussion, and articles for deletion allows discussion to reach consensus for deletion. Colin MacLaurin (talk) 02:58, 14 October 2013 (UTC) Colin MacLaurin (talk) 02:58, 14 October 2013 (UTC)

More input needed... Talk:Grace Church (Manhattan)#Infobox. Beyond My Ken (talk) 22:37, 18 October 2013 (UTC)

important to note

If at the time the Messiah preached to the gentiles in that time period the letter "J" was not in Hebrew, Greek, or Latin. It was not till about 500 years ago the "J" was introduced to English language. If you look in the 1611 K.J.V.not one "J" is present.Therefore how can any name starting with the letter "J" be the Messiah's name? ( (talk) 20:18, 20 October 2013 (UTC))

  • I thought the Messiah was Puerto Rican...In early Latin sources it was Iesus, which did not accurately transliterate an aspirated 'i in Greek transliterations of the Aramaic Yeshua and Hebrew Yehoshua. As for Jehovah as a name for God, it sticks around because a guy named Charles Taze Russell who was called fraud for selling "magic wheat" started a pseudo-Christian group insisted upon it as a name for God.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:26, 20 October 2013 (UTC), you might try asking your question at Wikipedia:Reference desk/Humanities. There is more expertise on religion on WikiProject Christianity than is present on the Ref Desks but there doesn't seem to be much activity here and at least there someone will try to address your question. Liz Read! Talk! 20:39, 20 October 2013 (UTC)

Christian massacre listed at Redirects for discussion


An editor has asked for a discussion to address the redirects Christian massacre and Christian holocaust. You might want to participate in the redirect discussion (if you have not already done so). Emmette Hernandez Coleman (talk) 01:28, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

RfC at Guy Fawkes Night

Talk:Guy Fawkes Night#RfC: Disambiguating presbytery link seems to be relevant to this project. StAnselm (talk) 20:29, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

Neutral wording needed for RfC

Seems like a possible way of attracting a broader spectrum of editors to the title problem at Talk:Saint Peter may be a RFC. In which case help would be appreciated in formulating a neutral RFC question. I have suggested Should this article follow MOS:SAINTS? as a RfC question, given that this is the main guideline relevant to inclusion of "Saint". But other alternative input would be appreciated before posting the RFC. In ictu oculi (talk) 04:36, 15 November 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/Christ and Culture

Came across this draft while reviewing abandoned AFC drafts. Appears to be a notable book, but I'm not sure if this article is at all salvageable or if WP:TNT would be more appropriate. (Article writer does not use third-party sources discussing the book, and in his summary of the book it's hard to tell which positions are his and which are Niebuhr's.) If someone here wants to clean up the article and move it to article space that would be great-- or if you think it should be deleted, let me know. Calliopejen1 (talk) 00:25, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

Definitely a notable book. 1369 citations on Google Scholar. I read The Church in Emerging Culture: Five Perspectives a few years ago - it is one of many volumes that picks up the issues raised by Niebuhr's book. But looking at the article, I have no personal interest in cleaning it up - I would go with TNT. StAnselm (talk) 00:33, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

Renaming "Homoousian"

Another editor has stated that this article is wrongly named, however the proposed change is no better. I have opened a fresh topic on the discussion page proposing either "Homoousios" or "Homoousion". Comments well there! Jpacobb (talk) 19:08, 26 November 2013 (UTC)

Talk:God in Christianity#Keeping an unbiased/neutral tone in this article

Please look at comments and consider the content of the article lead. tahc chat 06:17, 1 December 2013 (UTC)

Merger proposals for lists

There are proposals regarding these lists:

And should be like past proposals for the 20th- and 21st-century lists. Please comment. tahc chat 05:31, 2 December 2013 (UTC)

RFC at Teenage pregnancy

Teenage pregnancy isn't likely on your list, but I have just started a Christianity-related RFC at Talk:Teenage pregnancy#RFC on including or excluding Mary, Mother of Jesus there. WhatamIdoing (talk) 23:02, 2 December 2013 (UTC)


Talk:Christian conditionalism and Christian mortalism.

Sorry I'm not familiar with SDA literature but what is the difference between SDA views on "soul sleep" (to use the wrong term) and those of Hobbes, Milton, Newton described as Christian mortalism. It looks to the uninformed like two terms for the same thing. Is there a notable difference? In ictu oculi (talk) 09:16, 8 December 2013 (UTC)


Without wanting to beat further the dead horse, the carcass of this particular dead horse happens to be rather prominently lying draped on one of the WP:Five Pillars of en.wp, given that we are supposed to be a WP:NPOV project, and we don't write pbuh after Muhammad, we don't use "swami" for Hindu holy men. And yet we are calling 3 or 4 New Testament figures who are never called "saint" in neutral sources (such as Anchor Bible Dictionary, secular works, SBL type academic publications) "saint" - for reasons including that ngrams show a lot of church buildings and artworks named after them, which isn't news. It's personally not a big issue to me, as I went to a St X school, a St X church, where incidentally I never once heard the historical New Testament figure referred to with "saint", but my concern is treating Christian traditions one way and muslims and Hindus the other makes en.wp look non-neutral. If we're going to be neutral with muslim and Hindu holy figures then our articles shouldn't be titled or read like a Sunday School class.

Anyway, does anyone think there is any need to revisit the wording in WP:MOSSAINTS or any other guideline? In ictu oculi (talk) 09:29, 8 December 2013 (UTC)

I won't go into that wildly POV summary, but I'm glad to hear it isn't a big issue for you - who would have guessed! The question is really whether WP:MOSSAINTS needs clarifying to deal with the question of whether "Saint" is ever an acceptable way to disambiguate NT figures. Iio, myself & others interpret the relevant current policy framework differently, and differ on the question, but agree there is ambiguity that should be resolved, if only to stop the endless move discussions. Johnbod (talk) 12:32, 8 December 2013 (UTC)
Then I suggest that you raise a RFC to change WP:MOSSAINTS otherwise there will inevitably be further edits to the encyclopedia following WP:MOSSAINTS. In ictu oculi (talk) 01:22, 9 December 2013 (UTC)

Eastern Orthodox Feast Days being removed or not put in on certain articles for a specific day

For articles for:

December 2nd

December 3rd

December 6th

December 8th

December 10th

December 11th

December 12th

December 13th

December 14th

December 15th

December 24th

December 26th

December 27th

December 28th

December 29th

December 30th

December 31st

The link to the Eastern Orthodox liturgics is not present. I do not know if they never were added, or if they were removed by a user. I do not know if this removal has been done to other months, but I only checked this month. Just letting you know that it will need to be put in again, but I do not have the time to do so and I don't really know how.

I am speaking about, for example, December 1st here has this:

See, a link of December 1 Eastern Orthodox Liturgics page which lists the feasts of that day. This is needed since in the Orthodox Church, depending on which jurisdiction one uses the Gregorian Calendar or the Julian Calendar so this mixes up which day is which feast so it is easier to link to a page rather than have two lists of Saints on that day for each calendar.

December 2nd is missing the link under Christian Feast days, which would have a link to

Same with all the other dates listed. I only checked December, which I noticed was missing some days either by being taken out or not ever being added. I suspect other months also have this problem. Wondering if anyone will do the hard work and do the edits... I am afraid I would just be reverted since I am an IP75.73.114.111 (talk) 06:15, 10 December 2013 (UTC)

Christmas controversy Norway and Sweden

There is a talk page discussion about whether controversy in Norway and Sweden about public schools attending Advent/Christmas masses in Church belongs in the article. As we are currently only two disputans, any input from other users would be appreciated. Regards Iselilja (talk) 14:41, 20 December 2013 (UTC)

First Christian nation

What was the first nation to adopt Christianity as its state religion? Was it Armenia, Ethiopia, or Georgia? Anyway, there is a discussion at Talk:Christianity#Link to Kingdom of Aksum in the lead regarding what to include in that article. If there is to be an explanation given concerning this dispute, in what article would it belong? History of early Christianity? StAnselm (talk) 03:24, 23 December 2013 (UTC)

  • What about Edessa? Historians have posited their claim as often as those above. --ColonelHenry (talk) 04:08, 23 December 2013 (UTC)
The explanation given concerning this dispute should be in Early centers of Christianity#Outside the Roman Empire, if not elsewhere too. tahc chat 05:17, 23 December 2013 (UTC)

(biblical person) / (Abrahamic person) dab

Please see Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Judaism#.28Abrahamic_person.29_dab In ictu oculi (talk) 03:40, 26 December 2013 (UTC)

Christian Science

Has been added repeatedly to List_of_topics_characterized_as_pseudoscience viz [3]. At the CS talk page it was pretty generally accepted that CS is actually a religion. Thanks. Collect (talk) 21:36, 2 January 2014 (UTC)

Why is religion relevant - isn't this a question of what counts as pseudoscience? Or has somebody suggested that the two are mutually exclusive? bobrayner (talk) 23:04, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
Basically Carl Sagan said that religions and belief systems are normally not categorised as "pseudoscience." Searching Questia finds 3 books total dealing with CS as "pseudoscience" and over a thousand dealing with it as a "religion." This is a couple of orders of magnitude and such a disparity would generally place the extreme minority view into the "fringe category." Collect (talk) 23:30, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
  • There's currently a lot of nonsense going on with articles and allegations of "pseudoscience"--something that I think will eventually end up at ArbCom, topic bans, and the rest that would make the Bradley Manning mess look I wouldn't want to touch that with a ten-foot pole. And I'd recommend anyone to stay clear. --ColonelHenry (talk) 23:23, 2 January 2014 (UTC)
I share that concern. bobrayner (talk) 01:14, 3 January 2014 (UTC)
The best I could offer is put it on the administrator's noticeboard (not on WP:AN/I...that's the intellectual 4chan cesspool of Wikipedia)--ColonelHenry (talk) 01:33, 3 January 2014 (UTC)

Chinese minorities / Bible translations

article blanked but restored. Could possibly do with expansion. In ictu oculi (talk) 01:02, 6 January 2014 (UTC)

Articles on crosses

Hi, just for information, I'm in the process of translating a number of articles from German Wikipedia on different forms of Christian cross. So far, these include: basalt cross, forked cross, shaft cross, stone cross and wayside cross. These add to earlier articles on summit cross and triumphal cross. I've also created a template - {{Christian crosses}} - to link them up. Cheers. --Bermicourt (talk) 20:10, 6 January 2014 (UTC)

"Free Christians"

See talk:Free Christians (Britain) about a confused mess concerning Free Christians (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views) and Free Christians (Britain) (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views) and the need for renaming and cleanup -- (talk) 22:40, 6 January 2014 (UTC)

For the record, I pointed this out here on August 27. My request was archived without receiving any response. Better luck this time. BrainyBabe (talk) 00:53, 7 January 2014 (UTC)
  • I'm not familiar with this issue or the subject of the two articles. So that I don't have to sort through the mess, can you explain what the problem in a few sentences, so perhaps I can begin to be of help.--ColonelHenry (talk) 05:03, 7 January 2014 (UTC)
  • The page reads like an advertisment. It also seems purposely opaque. tahc chat 05:20, 7 January 2014 (UTC)

Guillermo Maldonado (Apostle)

Greetings WikiProject, may I please request some eyes over at Guillermo Maldonado (Apostle). The sources are poor (mostly primary sources and at least one dead link that may have been lifted out of El Rey Jesús). It appears the subject is notable as the leader of a big church, and seemingly prolific author, but I was hoping to get some experienced editors over there to take a look. For example, is "Apostle" an occupation? Regards, Cyphoidbomb (talk) 20:43, 7 January 2014 (UTC)

  • I think that's a little self-aggrandizing on his part or his marketing team's part since as an apostle I can't find his name in the Gospels or in Acts. The other Maldonado is the race car driver, which is a stub of dubious notability. I'll take a look at it later, and might move the article due to the misappropriation of "Apostle"--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:47, 7 January 2014 (UTC)
Whilst I think we need to distinguish between "the Apostles" in the Biblical record and the role of "apostle" which is used in some church circles to describe the function of church planting or pioneering mission today, I think to use it as a disambiguator does sound a little pompous and confusing. Perhaps it should be Foo (church leader) or Foo (priest)? --Bermicourt (talk) 21:27, 7 January 2014 (UTC)
Hey all, y'know, I think the article creator might benefit from some guidance on how to create a quality article. The inexperienced user did a large copy/paste from the official website, so that was hinky, but s/he has since removed the copyrighted content, but now we have little more than a stub, and there's still a speedy-delete pending. I think either moving the article to Guillermo Maldonado (pastor) might be a good start. I'm going to copy the bones of the article to Cristian325's userspace so it can be worked on. If anybody would be willing to poke at it, (assuming the community finds the subject notable) I'm sure it would be appreciated. Oh, and there's a parallel article on the subject's wife at Ana Maldonado. Cyphoidbomb (talk)
UPDATE: I've copy/pasted the article into Cristian325's userspace. Changed the parenthetical to (pastor). I've left instructions on the user's talk page and encouraged them to make contact here. Cyphoidbomb (talk) 21:47, 7 January 2014 (UTC)
I think either [Guillermo Maldonado (minister)] or [Guillermo Maldonado (pastor)] would be fine. Either way a disambiguator should always be (as an adjective) uncapitalized, not a honorific. tahc chat 01:02, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
Hey all, looks like the user is trying again. New submission at Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/Guillermo Maldonado (pastor). It was declined for reasons you will find obvious. Cyphoidbomb (talk) 19:38, 9 January 2014 (UTC)
And now his 3rd try (at least) is at Guillermo Maldonado (Reverend). Please look. tahc chat 06:13, 10 January 2014 (UTC)
  • "Reverend" isn't a title, its an adjective and inappropriate as a parenthetical. "pastor" or "minister," a noun, would be appropriate. the article itself...defies words. --ColonelHenry (talk) 06:47, 10 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Crazy we know whether Cristian325 is Maldonado? A little COI vanity project perhaps? --ColonelHenry (talk) 07:01, 10 January 2014 (UTC)

Any consensus re: adding "Protestant" and "Catholic" before Christian? Concerned about user's addditions...

I wanted to post this here to get some feedback. Another user, User:Rafaelosornio, appears to be somewhat indiscriminately inserting the qualifier "Protestant" before Christian, multiple times, across a variety of articles of religious leaders and popular entertainers. I think this is somewhat poor form for the reader to see the redundant adjective, but am assuming good faith.

Here is one example which I good faith reverted, as it affected quoted material and categories, others appear to alter some categories as well:[4]

Here are other examples:

Don't think these changes are necessarily the best idea, but wanted to gauge consensus here. Roberticus (talk) 18:20, 10 January 2014 (UTC)

  • Benny Hinn is a protestant? ...I thought he was just a fraud. I don't why its objectionable, huge categories are made more precise all the time or divided to be more manageable into new categories more precise terms. "American Christians" is huge...not all Christians are Protestant, so the precision is not a bad thing and not exactly redundant (though there might be better categories for such precision...American Presbyterians, American Lutherans, etc.). Has anyone reached out to the user to ask him his intentions? Maybe if someone dialogued with him, and found out what his edits are about, there could be a better way of achieving his goals.--ColonelHenry (talk) 18:26, 10 January 2014 (UTC)
I did post on his talk page with a link to this discussion. One concern I have is that in several cases it's added in multiple times appearing as if one did a find & replace adding "Protestant" to all instances of Christian, breaking categories to redlink and such. Also to a reader, it's repetitive, and reads as if the writer is trying to make a point or has an agenda. I say that while AGFing, it may be unintentional. Roberticus (talk) 20:47, 10 January 2014 (UTC)
  • The revert was appropriate. It is never proper to insert material into verbatim quotations (corrections, explanatory alterations and emphases must be obvious to the reader as not part of the quotation). Unless the references used to cite the material specify "Protestant Christian", then there is also no reason to insert this awkward phrase. Follow the usage in the sources rather than personal preference or synthesis. • Astynax talk 19:56, 10 January 2014 (UTC)

I don't think we'd want to object to the "Protestant" addition as a matter of absolute principle. In other contexts, such as historical or theological ones, it is necessary to categorize in this way (or more specific ways) where there are distinct beliefs or events. Could such considerations not come into play with people as well? I think they could.

Yet caution is called for; indiscriminate labeling is not a good idea. Context and significance are things that also need to enter into deciding each case. I would say there needs to be something notable or important at stake to use "Protestant" as a distinguishing label. And labeling can get tricky, even dangerous when applied to people. For example, a person's beliefs or actions might be considered "Christian" by some, but not by others. Association with an individual by category name can paint everyone else in the category by implication, a commonly-used technique of innuendo and propaganda: definitely not WP-approved. Even "Christian" itself could fall into that category. Recall that there is even a commandment regarding not taking "the name of the Lord in vain". For an individual to assume His name by applying "Christian" to him- or herself is a moral choice, and one that Christians are warned not to take lightly. So we as editors should be sure we're standing on firm ground, whatever we write or let pass.

In addition, the normal WP rules still apply. If the person is living, the revelation of personal or potentially sensitive information includes religious identification and affiliation. And of course, quotes from a source can't be tampered with directly. If "Protestant" seems to be required as an insertion, brackets might suffice, but there's still a danger of altering the source's intended meaning. With exceptions, the onus lies in the direction of making a sufficiently strong case for each. Evensteven (talk) 00:09, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

It depends on what reliable secondary sources say. If RS say that someone is a Protestant or Presbyterian or Orthodox or whatever kind of Christian, then we can describe him thus. If all the sources just say that he is a Christian, then we describe him as a Christian. Elizium23 (talk) 00:25, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
Likewise, if the source says he's evangelical, we can't assume Protestant...since there are evangelical Catholics, Orthodox, Anglicans, etc.--ColonelHenry (talk) 00:45, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
The word "Evangelical" has in modern usage been co-opted by a strain of Protestantism. I don't know what it would mean to describe a modern Catholic or Orthodox as "Evangelical", and while there is a whole Evangelical wing of the CofE, they are very clear indeed that they are Protestants. Lower-case "evangelical" is different - Jimmy Wales is "evangelical" about Wikipedia. Johnbod (talk) 12:39, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
Yes, of course, Elizium23. That's the normal rule. If it's in the sources, it's also already in the public view. We're not revealing anything that is not already revealed. Evensteven (talk) 01:03, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

To User:Roberticus

We need to specify what kind of Christian is, as Catholics and Orthodox are Christians too.

Today some confusion exists between the words "Christian" and "Catholic" due to misuse they are given, actually all who call themselves Christians are those who follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and believe in the Holy Trinity .

The misnamed "Christians" are actually Protestant Christians, they follow the Protestant doctrine founded by Martin Luther, a former Catholic priest who led the major schism in the Catholic Church to separate from it and establish Protestantism.

However, Catholics are actually Christians also, their real name is "Catholic Christians". Rafaelosornio (talk) 04:00, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia articles do not specify what kind of Christian is the person in question, and creates confusion among people. You should know that the term "Christian" refers not only to Protestants as the articles want us to believe but also Catholic Christians for example.Rafaelosornio (talk) 04:13, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

Do not worry about the broken categories, they will soon be arranged. I've done extensive research to corroborate what person is a Catholic Christian or Protestant Christian , so do not worry, I also will add the Catholic word before the word Christian if required.Rafaelosornio (talk) 04:13, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

But you don't reference your research at all, so that is no good. Much better you don't add anything at all on this subject. Johnbod (talk) 12:40, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
It's not quite true to say that all so-called Protestant Christians follow Martin Luther's doctrine. In fact, even at the time of the Reformation there were doctrinal differences between various Protestant groups: Zwingli, Calvin, the Church of England, etc. Also "Protestant" is not a great label and, apart from Northern Ireland where it has political overtones, I haven't come across it being used much these days to qualify a person's faith. People tend to see themselves as "Christians" or will use their denomination e.g. "Methodist", "Baptist", "Anglican". I think the safest course is to stick to what reliable sources say - that's Wiki policy anyway. And if we're being precise we should describe people as "Roman Catholics" not "Catholics" since other Christian churches see themselves as "catholic" too, and then again you have terms like "Anglo-Catholic"! Bermicourt (talk) 04:19, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Comment: In any case, User:Rafaelosornio should not be adding back the word after his initial addition was reverted. StAnselm (talk) 04:28, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

You are right about Luther's doctrine. Protestantism encompasses forms of Christian faith and practice that originated with doctrines and religious, political, and ecclesiological impulses of the Protestant Reformation against the Catholic Church.

For example, Pentecostals, Baptists, Lutherans, Calvinists, Presbyterians, Congregationalists, Puritans, Methodists, and Adventists are Protestant Christians, while Catholics are Catholic Christians and not Protestant Christians.Rafaelosornio (talk) 04:33, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

Roman Catholic and Orthodox Catholic it is correct.Rafaelosornio (talk) 04:36, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

  • I think Rafaelosornio's statement has indicated that he's either not a native English speaker and/or not familiar with English idioms and usage. And FYI, Rafaelo...Followers of Luther may be "Protestant Christians", but accurately/precisely they're Lutherans--one of many Protestant traditions. Likewise, Catholics shouldn't be called "Catholic Christians" because of the redundancy, they can either "Catholic" or, if we know, specifically Roman Catholic, Anglo-Catholic, Syrian Catholic, Eastern Rite, etc. etc. Having him comment here has me thinking someone should be watching over his contributions in this area.--ColonelHenry (talk) 04:37, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

The word "Christian" also refers to the Catholics. In any case, the articles should contain the Protestant and Catholic words being obvious that both are Christians, and not only the Christian word to refer only to Protestants.

Or maybe the word Catholic should be transformed by the Christian word. It will depend on the reader know if the person is a Catholic or Protestant Christian.Rafaelosornio (talk) 04:49, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

  • No. You're proposing something that is redundant, a needless tautology. I'm a human being. I'm also Caucasian. Caucasians are human beings. But it would be redundant and stupid to call me a "Caucasian human being". If someone is a Protestant and Christian...there's really no urgent need to say both. No need for the tautology "Protestant Christian" or "Catholic Christian" in most instances.--ColonelHenry (talk) 05:00, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

The best option is changing the word "Christian" (when it referes a Christian Protestant) by the word "Protestant" because saying "Protestant Christian" is redundant. You are right. In this case, the word "Catholic" would be correct, as well as the word "Protestant".Rafaelosornio (talk) 05:18, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

Two points. One, "all who call themselves Christians are those who follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and believe in the Holy Trinity" is incorrect. That would exclude nontrinitarians (see the list of examples in that article." Secondly, WP:BLP rules. The section on categories says "Categories regarding religious beliefs or sexual orientation should not be used unless the subject has publicly self-identified with the belief or orientation in question, and the subject's beliefs or sexual orientation are relevant to their public life or notability, according to reliable published sources." and we should apply this here also, not just to categorization. And I agree, just use 'Christian' unless we can state a specific denomination. The words 'Protestant' and 'Catholic' are ambiguous and are not the only types of Christian. Dougweller (talk) 10:31, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

Any consensus re: Changing the word "Christian" (when referring to a Protestant Christian) by the "Protestant" word.

Should the articles contain the Protestant and Catholic words and not only the Christian word to refer only to Protestants?

Or maybe the word Catholic should be transformed by the Christian word. Will it depend on the reader know if the person is a Catholic or Protestant Christian? Rafaelosornio (talk) 05:01, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

  • Only change "Christian" to "Protestant" when that is what the sources say explicitly, and the Protestant distinctive is relevant in the context. In most cases, people will instead be identified by denominational family (Methodist, Lutheran, Pentecostal, etc.) StAnselm (talk) 06:20, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Good grief. Eastern Orthodox consider themselves catholic also; capital "C" catholic is merely an abbreviation for Roman Catholic. But what if the word "catholic" comes at the start of a sentence? This kind of labeling is never going to work satisfactorily, the more so because there are more considerations than just getting an accurate label. (See my comments in the preceding section.)
My general advice: call a person what the source calls him/her; that's already public; what's more, it's also sourced. If a source uses something that doesn't look right, question whether or not the source is reliable as to the label. And better yet (in some cases), just leave out the label even if a source uses one. Ask yourself, what's the relevancy? What's the notability? In a pastor or evangelist, it's one thing; in an entertainer it's another. If the shoe doesn't fit, don't put it on. If some particular label is relevant, notable, or some other way necessary, and your source doesn't use it, get another source that does, or else lay the issue aside. You can only use what you have. If you "need" something else, you have to go find it. Make sure you're well grounded. This matter is not "editor's option". Evensteven (talk) 07:16, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
I agree, let's follow the sources. I certainly wouldn't change "Christian" to "Protestant" every time - in the English language it's more of an historic term and, even where it is used today, as I said before, it can have political overtones (this may not be the case in other languages, which could be why we're having this debate). --Bermicourt (talk) 09:26, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
Almost all "Protestant" groups refer to "one holy, catholic and apostolic church" - the label "Protestant" refers to the Reformation, and not to any non-standard Christian belief system at all. And many Baptists specifically oppose the word "Protestant" as being incorrect for their groups. Lastly, there are many Christian groups which are neither Roman Catholic nor Protestant in the first place, including Copts and Orthodox groups, new religious movements, etc. IOW, stick to the simple term. Collect (talk) 14:21, 11 January 2014 (UTC)
"Protestant" is indeed the stickiest term, because there is not any single uniform belief or church organization that can fall into the category and thus settle a definition. The earliest (Reformation) Protestants were indeed protesting against certain Roman Catholic practices of the time (and more) and clearly mark their beginnings with a break with Catholicism. But many newer churches originated in the 19th or 20th centuries, so their history is quite different. They may have been called protestant by outsiders for quite a while without taking the name as their own. Some object more strongly than others. And some original Protestants are careful to distinguish their beliefs from newer churches as well. So "Protestant" is not a label I would tend to apply even if a source used it, if I could avoid it. It's most useful for beliefs rather than people, as a category meaning "not Catholic and not Orthodox", but even then it's not always well-liked. Instead of using a label, it might prove more helpful simply to identify by name the specific church or organization the person is associated with, and give the person's official connection, as in a title (but get it all from a source). An entertainer might sometimes "tour with" a certain evangelical organization (or the like), or give benefit concerts. Look for workarounds. Evensteven (talk) 16:28, 11 January 2014 (UTC)

Nicene Creed See Also section

Please note an addition recently made to the article by user LP-mn, which I reverted, and s/he reverted back, with shouts to my user page. I haven't much use for shouting matches right now and am not inclined to engage unless there is community support behind what I did. I didn't actually call it vandalism, but... you decide. Besides, I'm sure there's got to be someone else who knows how to deal more effectively with this than I do. Evensteven (talk) 08:38, 22 January 2014 (UTC)

Free Christians is nominated for deletion

I have nominated the Free Christians article for deletion. Some of you may wish to go have your say on its entry here. --Devin Murphy (talk) 20:07, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

Invitation to User Study

Would you be interested in participating in a user study? We are a team at University of Washington studying methods for finding collaborators within a Wikipedia community. We are looking for volunteers to evaluate a new visualization tool. All you need to do is to prepare for your laptop/desktop, web camera, and speaker for video communication with Google Hangout. We will provide you with a Amazon gift card in appreciation of your time and participation. For more information about this study, please visit our wiki page ( If you would like to participate in our user study, please send me a message at Wkmaster (talk) 12:15, 30 January 2014 (UTC).

Urgent Clean Up Needed (Bias)

Just hit Persecution of Traditional African Religion while doing some WP:NPP and it is a mess. The subject is notable but the article is closer to an angry op-ed piece than a scholarly encyclopedic entry. It desperately needs attention from someone with some background in African and religious history who can throw a little balance into it. -Ad Orientem (talk) 06:33, 31 January 2014 (UTC)

Categorising Auxiliary bishops

When a person is consecrated as a bishop working under an archbishop, how should he be categorised? Should he

  1. be in Category:Roman Catholic archbishops of Foo? The example here is Pat Power who is a member of Category:Roman Catholic Archbishops of Canberra-Goulburn
  2. be in a generic country category like Category:Anglican bishops of Foo land? The example here is Peter Stuart (bishop) who is a member of Category:Australian Anglican bishops?
  3. be in a sub-category of the archdiocese that is created specifically for auxiliaries / assistants, even though it's likely to be sparsely populated? The example here is Category:Assistant bishops in the Diocese of Melbourne.

I don't see a policy on this anywhere. Laurel Lodged (talk) 12:52, 1 February 2014 (UTC)

Option 2, as Peter Stuart (bishop) of Category:Australian Anglican bishops. tahc chat 15:11, 1 February 2014 (UTC)

Article images portraying Biblical figures as White Europeans

Good morning WikiProject Christianity peoples. You might be interested in Wikipedia:Help desk#Concern, where an unregistered editor asks, "Why is your Biblical information always accompanied by pictures of Europeans in the roles of Biblical characters?", and a couple of us try to answer. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 22:46, 1 February 2014 (UTC)

Concerns about articles on early "Popes"

I have been reading through a few of the articles on early Bishops of Rome, and noticed some concerns. First, the fact that they are prefixed with "Pope" indicates a certain bias. Not only did the word "Pope" not come until later, but if "Pope" is to be used, it should be used as a prefix for all the early Patriarchs.

Secondly, many of the articles indicate that these early Bishops were "head of the Catholic Church", indicating even more bias towards the Roman Catholic viewpoint.

My recommendation (and will-be action if consensus is reached) is that "Pope" should be removed as a prefix from all the bishops of Rome up until the Great Schism and that "head of the Catholic Church" should be removed from articles that contain it up until the Great Schism. What is your take on this issue?

COI Notice: I am an Eastern Orthodox inquirer. Gold Standard 06:35, 13 January 2014 (UTC)

  • This is utterly ridiculous if you're claiming bias and proposing an action to swing the bias to some skewed anti-Roman Orthodox perspective you favour. I don't see a bias (which you're overstating) in how the articles are titled or the subjects addressed, and it's likely consensus wouldn't be reached, per WP:UCN--and on the small chance someone else sees this innocuous practice as a potential bias, per WP:POVNAME. The early bishops across the board were affectionately called "father" in what? Current English usage reserves the name pope for the Bishop of Rome and the Pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria or List of Greek Orthodox Patriarchs of Alexandria which Wikipedia covers rather consistently--and without favouritism to the Catholics, the Coptics, or the Greeks--and addresses other leaders as Patriarch where appropriate in a rather consistent and unbiased fashion. I sincerely and strongly doubt we'll get into the Russian tradition where every village priest assumes the affectionate title of "pop" or "papa". Other less primal figures are appropriately described as bishops or with their relevant titles. Pope leads to the Catholic office simply by virtue of satisfying all the criteria per WP:PRIMARYTOPIC...guess Francis and his predecessors win out on that one since he leads roughly 60% of the world's Christians. Thanks for declaring your COI...FYI, I'm an Anglican...the Bishop of Rome hath no jurisdiction in this Realm of England.--ColonelHenry (talk) 07:21, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
  • COI Notice: I am Eastern Orthodox.
No, ColonelHenry, it's not "ridiculous", bias is not "potential", and not all is "innocuous" here. On the other hand, I agree that the reaction is overstated, and the recommendation too heavy. And I distinguish fairly sharply the impact of "Pope" from that of "head of the Catholic Church".
That Russian tradition of "pop" or "papa" for the village priest is thoroughly Orthodox, very ancient, and didn't originate in Russia. As you mentioned, early bishops, Greek- or Latin- speaking, were often referred to (informally) in affectionate terms by a diminutive of "father", for which "papa" serves as a good English approximation. The Latin-language form of this address led to the word we know as "pope" today. I frankly don't know just when use of "pope" narrowed in the west to mean just the Patriarch of Rome, but I'd wager it was a gradual thing led by common usage from below, and wouldn't be at all surprised if it was pretty much accomplished before the schism. So it's hard for me to see any bias in the title "Pope" at all. There is certainly POV in RC dogma regarding the authority the Pope might hold, but that POV is not inherent in the title, however much the common reader may associate the title with Rome. As an Orthodox, I don't accept those RC claims of authority; neither do I accept any restriction on the application of "Pope" to other bishops or clergy. I also don't think that the RCs set out to restrict usage; it just became a common perception in the west, where many have not heard of the Orthodox AND Coptic Patriarchs of Alexandria or their use of the title. I don't think this is a matter for contention, and see no harm even in RCs applying "Pope" to the earliest Patriarchs of Rome, even before the practice was widespread historically. And that is because the nature of the (informal) title does not distort the history of those early times. It was always informal then, and today it supports an historical continuity that is readily recognizable. And the affection inherent in "pope" represents a fundamentally orthodox attitude. I think appeals to WP:UCN or WP:POVNAME are really mostly unneeded here; I don't see where WP:PRIMARYTOPIC applies in any case. It's all just too heavy.
Ooh, but "head of the Catholic Church" is problematic in so many ways. I would suggest that "head of the Roman Catholic Church" might serve as a more accurate and less unambiguous substitute in times after the schism. Why should the reader be left guessing about the application of "Catholic", when conflicts and controversies just love to inflict themselves upon its use? Let's undermine such nonsense through specificity (if you really need the phrase at all). Before the schism, the bishops in Rome can be considered Orthodox Patriarchs; that is, the Orthodox consider them to be so. For Orthodox, "head" will never do; the head of the church anywhere is Jesus Christ. Any side one takes on that statement is POV, and hence "head" is bias. But "head" is not an official title, it doesn't affect article names or the popes; it can be readily avoided by using a more neutral word, or by avoiding the phrase entirely. "Roman Catholic Pope John XXIII" doesn't need to be identified by such a phrase; neither does "Pope Gregory I of Rome". I doubt you can find anyone who really does. Why not just reword and remove the offending phrase as a bit of cleanup? There's no justification for using problematic language when easy neutral alternatives are available.
Btw, I'm also a former Anglican. Cheers! Evensteven (talk) 11:49, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
There is discussion of "head of the Catholic Church" above, and I support its removal up to some date in perhaps the 3rd or 4th century. "Pope" is very often needed for disambiguation, and certainly meets WP:COMMONNAME. I might support its removal for the first 4 or so - figures like Pope Linus - but then how else to disambiguate them? Of course Saint Peter is not given a Pope title. But taking either of these up to the Great Schism is way over the top. If these articles are being altered (and many have been done already in fact) the disgusting fake C19th portraits (the black and white ones as at Pope John XI) should all be replaced with any of the alternatives, which are all better. "Pope" is only normally used in English for Coptic etc prelates, not the main Patriarchs of Orthodoxy. Johnbod (talk) 12:02, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
You seem to have missed that "pope" originated as an informal usage, and ancient orthodox patriarchs were sometimes addressed that way. Not in all circumstances, mind you, the social context needed to be right. Informal. If modern references may neglect that usage, there can be many reasons for it: not an informal situation, not an official title, not a documented application. That's fine, but it's also not justification for restricting the use of "pope" artificially. It is what it is; let it be. On WP, it is what WP:RS have presented publicly, which tends to be more formal. That's ok too. But it is our concern to remain neutral, and within where WP:RS will allow us to go, we have room to direct our editing choices to the least inflammatory way of stating things. WP:RS is not the master protocol either. Seeking neutral alternatives for phrasing is beneficial to WP and a desirable orientation for editors to have. So is defusing discussions.
  • "Pope" may well be useful for disambiguation. That means nothing if it's not already appropriate to use the title. But I have argued that it is appropriate. Nevertheless, the need for disambiguation is an insufficient reason. But don't worry; be happy.
  • St. Peter is not a pope because he was an apostle, not a bishop/patriarch. They are distinct roles in the early church.
  • You do not say why you think eliminating "head of the Catholic Church" is "way over the top", while I have stated my reasons for why the phrase is problematic. I think you need to make a case for why that particular phrase is required as a description for the popes. It seems to me that the role of pope as bishop/patriarch, within Orthodoxy or within Roman Catholicism, is pretty well-defined by those churches already. Is the role not inherent for one who assumes the position of pope? Why then is the phrase not redundant? And why then can it not be removed as superfluous? And why do you mention "up to ... the 3rd or 4th century"? Just calling the idea "way over the top" tends to be inflammatory. Let's tone down and start to deal with it rationally.
  • I have not made any of the changes you refer to, and do not know what they are specifically. They have not been any consideration at all in what I have written about. I for one have no interest in trying to promote an agenda in the face of opposition. But I do expect and require that all other editors listen, try to understand and to reason, and assume good faith. Take your time. Explain. And don't jump to conclusions. I'm listening. Evensteven (talk) 13:29, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
Later insert and strikeout: Having had some more time to look at WP policies, I see now that invoking WP:AGF means something quite significantly different from what I thought at the time. My apologies to Johnbod for any implication of bad faith on his part. That was never intended. Evensteven (talk) 20:46, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Are you? Not very carefully it seems to me. My comments reflect the general understanding among historians of the church as to when it is appropriate to talk of a "pope" or "head of the church". Did you read the previous discussion? I'm not willing to spend very much time explaining things to you I'm afraid. Johnbod (talk) 14:06, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
  • I second Johnbod's analysis of the need to disambiguate early Bishops of Rome as "pope" even when the expression was in greater informal currency in the early years--I would oppose the stripping of the title up to the 3rd/4th century and assert that the usage of Pope in the article names, etc., overrides (per WP:UCN, WP:POVNAME) any claim of perceived bias. The fact remains--the majority of users searching for popes, or a list of popes, are looking for articles on the holders of the See of Rome and only a much slimmer minority for its usage in other traditions. While I will acknowledge that the eastern tradition asserts that they are "Catholic" too, the numbers of parishioners (and by extrapolation, searching readers) work against them in the general understanding of the word (Protestants searching for Catholic are likely looking for Roman Catholic, Roman Catholics tend to ignore the arguments from the east). Sorry, the numbers (1.2 billion Roman Catholics, 600-800 million Protestants vs. at best 300 million Orthodox Christians...ratio about 7 to 1.) support WP:UCN leaning innocuously toward the Roman tradition. "Way over the top" entirely a reasonable description of the attempt to strip the title up to the Great Schism and for the militancy of such a biased proposal. That's just swinging the pendulum hard toward Orthodox POV-pushing, and I think irrationally, you're ignoring the fact that others disagree with you for reasonable, policy-based reasons. I still don't see a bias that needs addressing--and I don't see a need to change a reasonable, policy-based structure that is adequate and most appropriate for readers. Quite frankly, I am not going to waste my time petulantly fighting A.D. 1054 all over again, and I'd admonish the orthodox readers to improve the articles regarding their tradition instead of bitching about insignificant semantics or thinking that dimming the West's candle makes the East's grow brighter. Namaste. --ColonelHenry (talk) 16:41, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
  • So because there are fewer Orthodox than Protestants or Catholics, we have to make the articles palatable to Catholicism? That does not seem to be an attitude of NPOV, it seems to be an attitude of "giving users what they're searching for, and not an article of least bias". Additionally, I find it funny that you think this is a biased proposal, when the articles in and of themselves are obviously biased towards Roman Catholicism in declaring the bishop of Rome to be "head of the Catholic Church". If the term "Pope" is not going to be removed, then that phrase certainly should be because it is clear bias. It is not insignificant or semantical; in fact, it is something that Roman Catholics only, not Orthodox or Protestant, believe to be true. For that reason, all occurrences of the phrase "head of the Catholic Church" should be replaced with "according to the Roman Catholic Church, head of the Catholic Church" or something to that effect. Gold Standard 17:13, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
  • That's why we have WP:POVNAME and other relevant policies...we can accept a small, harmless bias from time to time because it's the least offensive and least inaccurate of many (often worse) options. What you're asking is that we trade a small, harmless, mostly unnoticeable bias for larger, more noticeable, less accurate bias (an anti-Rome, pro-Eastern Orthodox position across the board weakens the accuracy of the Roman Church's related article and might make them harder to find for interested readers). Sorry, this isn't a alternative battleground to perpetuate your ongoing anti-Rome fight still brewing since 1054 (actually since Chalcedon in 451). Sorry, but I don't see it your way--no matter how many times you bitch POV POV POV while pushing your own POV. --ColonelHenry (talk) 17:30, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
  • I am not here to WP:BATTLE. I am here to make the articles have a neutral POV, not my own. WP:NPOV makes it clear that we are to "Avoid stating opinions as facts" and "Avoid stating seriously contested assertions as facts". If I was indeed pushing my own POV, I would be advocating that the articles say that the bishop of Rome was never the "head of the Catholic Church", but that would make the articles biased towards my own POV. Instead, I am advocating for a truly neutral article that indicates who believes what, specifically that it is only the Roman Catholic Church that holds that the Popes were head of the Catholic Church. Sure, the Roman Catholics are a majority, but it is far from consensus that the early Popes were head of the Catholic Church, and therefore we must indicate in the article that it is the RCC that holds to this position if we want the article to be NPOV. This is not inserting a "pro-EO" position, as the pro-EO position is that the bishop of Rome was never the head of the Catholic Church.
I would like to add that I am not "perpetuating my anti-Rome fight". I have never set foot in an EO Church and have no connection to the East. I am merely considering conversion. Gold Standard 18:42, 13 January 2014 (UTC)

Folks, I'm asking again that you assume good faith. Please take a peek at a couple of recent discussions I have contributed to. Does it appear that I am not being constructive there, or that I am pushing an agenda? I don't think I have; I have had no intention of doing so. If you prefer, we can take that matter to my user talk page. But I really would appreciate some feedback on this point, because I'm definitely not here to WP:BATTLE either. That kind of attitude can destroy Wikipedia, but it destroys the participants too.

Johnbod, yes, I'm listening. Carefully. I'd be happy to read your discussion "above" if I could find it. I've looked through the titles (over 1000 of them) in all the archives and could see nothing suggestive. Would you be willing to give me a closer hint? I might have just looked by it without seeing. I have a related frailty that I have no control over. I do confess I am cautious about accepting phrases like "general understanding among historians of the church", since I have seen other instances (where none here was involved) in which there was a POV hidden behind it. (I have at least been on WP long enough to have had that experience.) I haven't dealt with you before, and you just haven't given any clear indication of where you're coming from. Stating your opinion does not constitute an answer to a question. Let's have a concrete pointer to two before misunderstandings develop. I know very well that communication is work, and I'll try not to be a distraction. On the other hand, I still feel free to contribute as I can, and I can't be limited by your available free time either.

ColonelHenry, for "petulantly fighting A.D. 1054 all over again", "bitching about insignificant semantics", and "bitch POV POV POV while pushing your own POV", shame on you! You are able to phrase those thoughts in a respectful tone, but have chosen not to do so. Put a rein on the rhetoric. For "I'd admonish the orthodox readers to improve the articles regarding their tradition", it's not up to you to say where anyone's contributions ought to be. Don't overstep your rights as an editor. Nevertheless, a significant portion of my own work has been done there, as might be natural. Implied criticisms rejected. For "thinking that dimming the West's candle makes the East's grow brighter", mind-reading another editor is not respectful either, and certainly not conducive to discussion. I recently had a thought in a comical vein, that perhaps I will mention here in a serious one: there is no "cussing" in "discussing"; that's why it's called dis-cussing. It can sometimes be work to remove ("dis") the cussing from an interaction. But there will be no true discussion possible without it. Dis-cussing is WP policy too.

I for one would love to see Roman Catholicism and Orthodoxy mend some fences, wherever possible. Let's try applying the same attitude here. I have seen fragments of a few past verbal wars on WP among editors of one view or another, some between western Christians and Orthodox, that make my blood curdle - not with anger, but with sheer pain. No good can come of it. If anyone distrusts me just because I am Eastern Orthodox, I am sorry that it is so; but I am not responsible for the actions of others, nor do I necessarily condone them. If they are Orthodox, then I would rebuke them the more sternly. But rebukes are reserved for serious infraction and delivered infrequently, lest they turn into occasion for war. The idea is to give an opportunity for someone to respond freely in a constructive way. Will you all please take a step with me in this direction?

About WP policy and bias, we probably have some conflicts in ways of thinking. I don't think there is any WP policy that supports bias. But WP policy is pragmatic enough to recognize that it needs to bend to practicalities. I think it is better to recognize bending for what it is: an imperfect solution, but implemented for the sake of being able to accomplish something useful. What it is not is an excuse to take bias lightly. Neither is it an excuse for belittling a bias against a group one does not belong to. Neither is it an excuse for perpetuating a bias when a reasonable alternate solution presents itself. To be constructive, we will need to decide how and to what degree those abstract statements apply to our current troubles.

Let's back away from "head of the Catholic church" for a bit until the climate can cool down, and just deal with "Pope". I think there's hope there. I have already described how the use of "pope" is not an issue for Eastern Orthodoxy. Many pre-schism orthodox popes are still celebrated as saints in the east. I have heard them called "pope" in Orthodox services (I am thinking especially of Pope Gregory I of Rome, the "Dialogist"), never as "patriarch". If you understand the place of the worship services within eastern Holy Tradition, you will realize how significant that is. There is no way that Orthodoxy has any trouble with "Pope", or it could not be there in the services. Everything I have said about "Pope" was designed to convey that it is not a bias issue for the Orthodox. Nothing I said was designed to be a recommendation of where it should or should not be applied on Wikipedia. I am happy to go along with western reliable sources, Roman Catholic or not, as to what they see as appropriate usage. And I stand behind application of that usage per WP policy. If changes to "Pope" as a title have been made counter to those reliable sources, I think those changes should be reverted. Even though I'm delighted that this outcome is convenient for handling disambiguation, that's still not the right basis on which to have settled the outcome.

Let's also continue to assume good faith on Gold Standard's part in his/her advocacy, too. As stated earlier, Gold Standard is not yet Orthodox, but only considering conversion. To me, the view is highly understandable, given the facts of east/west history, and the inflated way that old hurts sometimes continue to be aired. If his/her knowledge of Orthodoxy is not as yet advanced enough to have understood "Pope" is not an issue for the Orthodox, that is also highly understandable, and there is no shame in that. Some of what I wrote was with Gold Standard in mind, to fill in what was unknown.

So far, so good? Evensteven (talk) 21:26, 13 January 2014 (UTC)

Thank you for this, I did already back off of my recommendation to remove "Pope" from the article titles. My main concern is now that the Roman Catholic view of the Pope as head of the Catholic Church is being presented as fact, rather than the opinion of the RCC (as is discouraged in WP:NPOV). Gold Standard 22:05, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Yeah, sorry. I'm not reading all that repetitive crap, Evensteven. --ColonelHenry (talk) 22:22, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Every time you respond and repeat the same tired argument, it evinces that you don't and your tag-team partner are not too concerned what anyone else says. We're not going to agree, you're not going to see it anyone else's way. and quite frankly, I don't have the time for that nonsense. And rather than read 1,500 words of repetitive sanctimonious bullshit, I'll say "no thanks."--ColonelHenry (talk) 23:57, 13 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Perhaps a reason to repeat the argument is that you haven't addressed how stating the RCC's opinion as fact isn't a violation of NPOV. We are concerned as to what you have to say in response to this, we're just waiting for evidence that the RCC's opinion can be stated as fact and not violate NPOV. And again, civility please. Gold Standard 00:05, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Already addressed that with discussion of WP:POVNAME, etc. Apparently, you didn't read that or worse refuse to acknowledge that. Forumshopping is further proof of that. And trading one harmless, slight POV (the lesser of several evils) for your "way over the top" swing to the Eastern Orthodox POV is not acceptable as an alternative. No matter how many times you repeat your pitch, I'm still going to say "nope, not buying it."--ColonelHenry (talk) 00:43, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
  • POVNAME is utterly irrelevant to the insertion of a phrase that is a descriptor used only by the RCC. A "way over the top" swing would be to specifically specify that the Pope is not the head of the Catholic Church, which is not what I am advocating. Gold Standard 00:47, 14 January 2014 (UTC)

Suggesting that this dialogue be moved to WP:NPOVN. Gold Standard 00:17, 14 January 2014 (UTC)

Well, I think we've got a resolution on "Pope". Excellent.

ColonelHenry, did I hear an apology in there somewhere? Your transmission came through garbled. But it's gladly accepted. Evensteven (talk) 00:27, 14 January 2014 (UTC)

Discussion section at WP:NPOVN has been created and participating users have been notified. Gold Standard 00:34, 14 January 2014 (UTC)

  • The previous discussion was actually at Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Catholicism/Archive_2013, sections 27, 35 and [late addition] 48, which is the proper place really. A search on ""head of the Catholic church" POV" found it easily enough. I hadn't really followed it & agree more with those at S35. There may well be other sections that are relevant. This discussion should be notified there, Gold Standard. Johnbod (talk) 01:20, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Thank you, I didn't know about these. It seems as though #35 is the one that is relevant to the current discussion, as #27 addresses my previous point which I have already ceased to argue for. Gold Standard 01:29, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Thanks, Johnbod. I've been working on another article today too, and have about reached my day's termination point, so I'll have to get to it tomorrow. I'll likely join the other dialogue as I am able also. Evensteven (talk) 02:46, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
  • In fact, after a series of edits I did in September, & a couple more just now, Pope Pontian who succeeeded in 230 is now the first described at the start as "head of the Catholic church". I've discussed terminology at the other place, but "head" should probably go for the next ones as well - I'd be inclined to say all to Pope Sylvester I (r. 314-335) though cases might be made for other points. Johnbod (talk) 14:51, 14 January 2014 (UTC)

The POV questions that arose in this discussion have been resolved with consensus. The discussion at NPOVN has been closed and archived. The consensus there returns the basic formulation of the lead sentence to "Pope" instead of "head of the Catholic Church", but does not cut off the possibility of changes in formula for the earliest Popes' articles, as was suggested both here and there. Discussion at NPOVN seemed to favor "Bishop of Rome" in place of "Pope" until Nicea, as Johnbod suggests just above here. I plan on making required changes to the articles soon, and propose to use "Bishop of Rome" pre-Nicea unless there are objections to the latter. The basic idea for that change is to reflect history better. Evensteven (talk) 00:55, 6 February 2014 (UTC)

Cannabis in the Bible

Can someone please supply reliable sources for Wikipedia's claim that cannabis was used in Holy anointing oil? Thanks In ictu oculi (talk) 07:10, 23 January 2014 (UTC)

Two news items about the same thing: an article published in the drugs magazine "High Times" by Chris Bennett. Plus three items that declare it a possibility but by no means a certainty. Strike the first two as POV. The three are insufficient to make the characterization "was used in". Evensteven (talk) 08:31, 23 January 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, these pretty well confirm my impression that there's no evidence and the content of the article (as it has recently been edited) is getting fringey. But as the Talk page shows there are some real enthusiasts for boosting the cannabis content in the article. More eyes/hands on are needed. In ictu oculi (talk) 10:03, 23 January 2014 (UTC)
  • Those were more respectable looking sources with a quick google search before going to bed last night. None of them would pass my RS test. the first two just seem to be reporting--repeating--a claim made from teh fringe. If we say "Bennett said this" and the rest of the sources all look like they say "Bennett said this" but with a hesitancy to cite Bennett or give him credit, and we use those sources to support Bennett, it would effectively be a feedback loop. So, it's best to just present it as "one person, with a COI as a pot-smoker, said this". --ColonelHenry (talk) 15:42, 23 January 2014 (UTC)
I also would certainly limit exposure to that much at a maximum. But with a single COI as the basis, is it not WP:UNDUE to mention it at all? Evensteven (talk) 16:13, 23 January 2014 (UTC)
Evensteven - I would agree. I think the only decent and accurate mention of it would be to say (1) one writer commented that the term ought to be translated as cannabis, adding immediately after (2) a serious RS-based mitigation/refutation of that claim. The second part being important so that we don't give the cannabis claim a life of its own under the auspices of "Wikipedia says it"--thereby spawning a bunch of magazine mention that the potsmoking crowd would attempt to come back to incorporate as reliable sources to bolster the original fringe view.--ColonelHenry (talk) 20:22, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
I like that even better; in fact, much better. Evensteven (talk) 21:23, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
User:Evensteven, ColonelHenry - thank you for this sensible input. Could I presume further to ask that someone acts on this in the article. Thank you. In ictu oculi (talk) 15:10, 30 January 2014 (UTC)
So that's why they called him the High Priest...PiCo (talk) 21:35, 8 February 2014 (UTC)

Category:Pentecostal pastors

I did not realize that a discussion to rename Category:Pentecostal clergy to Category:Pentecostal pastors and similar categories (such as Category:Assemblies of God clergy to Category:Assemblies of God pastors) was underway at Wikipedia:Categories for discussion/Log/2014 January_16#Category:Pentecostal clergy, but I believe it was a horrible idea. Many of the names on this category aren't even pastors but evangelists. A pastor is a shepherd of a congregation, not a catch-all term for all Pentecostal clergy. And besides the pastor/evangelist distinction, there are ordained ministers who do not work as pastors or evangelists but as teachers, working in academic institutions. For example, Gordon Fee, an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God, is now listed in the category of Assemblies of God pastors even though he is not a pastor. Contrary to what has been represented in the discussion, not every ordained minister within Pentecostal churches is called "pastor." Am I the only one who sees this as a problem? Ltwin (talk) 07:59, 31 January 2014 (UTC)

I know little about Pentecostals, but more about English. I agree that "clergy" does not have the same meaning as "pastor" anywhere, and that this name change therefore implies a real change of category. Evensteven (talk) 18:08, 31 January 2014 (UTC)
Ltwin, this change was intentional. This group of categories is part of the Religious leaders hierarchy. Gordon Fee is notable as an academic rather than as a leader of a congregation, so being a Pentecostal minister is not WP:DEFINING for him. Being a Pentecostal Christian is defining, so I will re-categorise him accordingly. – Fayenatic London 07:28, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
But that's the point. This decision to change the clergy category to simply pastor was a bad decision. Whether Fee is a pastor or not, he is still an ordained minister of the AG which means he is automatically part of the AG's religious hierarchy. The AG does not give pastoral credentials out anyway. They ordain ministers. Some of these ministers pastor churches. Some of them don't. Not all Pentecostal church leaders lead congregations. Some are evangelists, who aren't called "pastor." And many figures who were at one time pastors are not notable for being pastors but instead for being evangelists. Ltwin (talk) 18:22, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
All Ltwin's points also follow as normal consequences of plain English, and can (and do) apply in the same ways in many places. "Pastor" is a specific role, an office, whereas "clergy" is foundational, grants certain authority, and permits people to assume various roles over time. To put it crudely (and somewhat inaccurately) "pastor" is more like a job, where "clergy" is more like a career. It seems unwise to categorize people on the basis of only one role. That's seldom the most notable aspect, and tends to be a moving target as well. Evensteven (talk) 19:08, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
Even if for some reason one thought that "clergy" was objectionable in a Pentecostal context (even though it isn't), there are other options than just making the category "pastors only" as if pastors are the only type of ministerial office Pentecostals recognize. You could have changed the category name to Pentecostal ministers, Assemblies of God ministers, etc. "Pastor" is just too limiting. Ltwin (talk) 21:04, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
Yes, limiting, both by definition of role, and also over time, as roles change. Evensteven (talk) 23:07, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

AfC submission

Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/Photinus of Thessalonica. FoCuSandLeArN (talk) 19:08, 12 February 2014 (UTC)

Mediation notice

Initial mediation discussion that became WP:WALLOFTEXT huge.--ColonelHenry (talk) 18:07, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

Information icon A request for Formal Mediation re Matthew's Hebrew Gospel will be filed today. Please see the talk page of User:PiCo Cheers - Ret.Prof (talk) 15:29, 8 February 2014 (UTC)

  • Thanks for the notification, Ret.Prof, but I'll steer clear of that one for now. It looks like a dispute that would eventually end up at ArbCom just like the Ebionites matter. I'll watch. Anyone who touches that, I'd fear, is just asking to get a "topic ban, broadly construed".--ColonelHenry (talk) 16:06, 8 February 2014 (UTC)
I sincerely hope that RetProf doesn't get a topic ban or even go to ArbCom. I hope the mediation process can resolve this without further action, and I'll do my best to see it does. PiCo (talk) 21:32, 8 February 2014 (UTC)
I tend to agree with User:ColonelHenry, - since mediation will be probably done by editors not familiar with New Testament criticism sources, and since the idea of a "Hebrew Matthew" has broad popular appeal the likely result will be punishment of editors reverting WP:FRINGE. It's probably better to stay out of it and simply deal with edit problems at the article level. In ictu oculi (talk) 08:24, 9 February 2014 (UTC)
Well it is now at Wikipedia:Requests for mediation/Hebrew Gospel of Matthew. Has got off to a bad start already with Ret Prof framing the question "To what extent, if at all, should Matthew's Gospel in Hebrew as described by Papias be represented in the Gospel of Matthew article?" which seeing as nothing direct from Papias survives and Eusebius specifically says logia not gospel is already less accurate than our existing sourced content Gospel_of_Matthew#Composition_and_setting. How is "mediation" going to make up the expertise in sources needed to judge this? In ictu oculi (talk) 15:02, 9 February 2014 (UTC)
Question: how does your statement here square with PiCo's request that you review the problem statement and have input into wording it correctly? You left a note on his talk page saying everything was fine. Btw, the statement was crafted by PiCo. Ret.Prof simply filed the request for mediation. Ignocrates (talk) 14:18, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
The statement that I crafted isn't the one that ended up on the mediation request - my suggested wording was "To what extent, if at all, should the Hebrew Gospel hypothesis be represented in the Gospel of Matthew article?" But I think things are still manageable. PiCo (talk) 20:59, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
I see your point, and I was mistaken in assuming it was your version. For the sake of clarity, here are the two versions together:
Ret.Prof - "To what extent, if at all, should Matthew's Gospel in Hebrew as described by Papias be represented in the Gospel of Matthew article?"
PiCo      - "To what extent, if at all, should the Hebrew Gospel hypothesis be represented in the Gospel of Matthew article?"
I don't understand the purpose of Ret.Prof's statement, since Papias is already mentioned in the article. Still, I agree this is not a deal-breaker. MedCom has accepted mediation, btw. Ignocrates (talk) 21:32, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
Ignocrates as above when I said I agreed with PiCo's statement I agreed with PiCo's statement: "To what extent, if at all, should the Hebrew Gospel hypothesis be represented in the Gospel of Matthew article?" This is an accurate summary of the problem. I did not agree with Ret Prof's statement of the problem, and as I said do not think that is a good start since Ret Prof's statement which is (a) not what PiCo drafted, (b) factually incorrect since Papias (in fact Eusebius) never said "Hebrew Gospel", and (c) Papias is already reliably sourced and handled in the article - and isn't the problem. The problem is wider than Eusebius' comment about Papias as the incident which led to ANI - proposing a 8th Century Arabic footnote as found in all (Greek) Gospel mss. If mediation is to proceed it should relate to all the variations on the "Hebrew Gospel" them which have been asserted and found lacking in modern academic support over the last 4 years. Bits of the Celticist Edward Byron Nicholson, James R. Edwards etc etc. In ictu oculi (talk) 16:28, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
I understand your concerns, and I think it's not surprising there has been difficulty in drafting a statement of the problem. If communication between the parties was good we wouldn't need a mediator to facilitate the process. Despite the initial difficulties, I think these differences will be resolved once a mediator is appointed and we start laying out arguments and evidence. Please give the mediation process a chance to work. Ignocrates (talk) 18:49, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
You can count on this going to arbitration if mediation fails or is rejected by the involved parties. Ignocrates (talk) 14:37, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
  • Question: I don't know much about mediation. I am not a party to this mediation, but what happens if I disagree with the changes to the article that result from the mediation? Do changes still need talk page consensus? StAnselm (talk) 02:54, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
The results of mediation aren't binding, but they would have a certain clout - "we went to mediation and we agreed to this." It's not too late to become a party if you wish - as a party you'd be asked to state your views and able to join in discussions. Let me know on my talk page. PiCo (talk) 03:02, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
The most straightforward way to proceed would be to add yourself as a party to the mediation. We had to make a list of likely participants, but we didn't intentionally exclude you. The worst possible outcome would be for editors to sit on the sidelines and disavow the mediation process before there is even a chance to reach an agreement. Ignocrates (talk) 04:13, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
The worst possible outcome would be for this to continue to ArbCom and just for arguing for a reliable-sources/scholarly treatment of it, get "topic ban, broadly construed" and getting indefinitely blocked for reverting an edit on a remotely connected Christianity article. This has all the potential of a third-rail, and before I consider adding any insight or argument, I would need to be beyond assured that ending up at ArbCom isn't the fate preordained by the stars. As I indicated above, this is a quagmire waiting to happen...just like the Ebionites mess.--ColonelHenry (talk) 16:07, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
Speaking as an involved party in the "Ebionite mess", I think the arbitration process in this case will be more difficult. This is a complex multiparty dispute and the locus of this long-running dispute cuts across many articles. It won't be pretty. Formal mediation is the last, best chance to avoid this outcome. Ignocrates (talk) 18:56, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
Mediation and Dispute Resolution don't ever seem to work, so my money's on a final decision at ArbCom. I'll keep an eye on the mediation process but because of my concerns (i.e. the expectation of topic bans all-around and swiftly-executed AE), I'll prefer to stay out of the fray on this one. If it does get to ArbCom, I'll add my two cents there impartially on possible solutions which would likely emerge more clearly in the course of the mediation discussion. I am certain you can understand my rationale. To say it abruptly: I wouldn't fuck this hooker with a stolen dick.--ColonelHenry (talk) 19:23, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
Me neither, but I'm in it, like it or not. See you on the other side of mediation. :0) Ignocrates (talk) 19:59, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
  • Response to the comments above: Such personal attacks are not acceptable at mediation!
  1. It is true that the Hebrew Gospel of Matthew is gaining in popularity but this will not result in punishment on the group of editors called "Editors reverting WP:FRINGE." The wrongful actions of the Anti-Fringe POV Railroad are not the subject of mediation.
  2. The name change was the right decision! 24 minutes before the agreed upon deadline User:PiCo came to me with the following concern: "You need, somehow, to head off the argument that the HGH is already covered in the article of Hebrew Gospel hypothesis - this, and not fringyness, is what your opponents will be arguing (if they do argue fringe it'll be easy to shoot down). I don't know how you'll argue that, in fact I don't think it can be done, but please be ready to do it, both in your filing and later in the course of the debate" Therefore (2 minutes before the agreed upon filing deadline) I changed the topic name from Hebrew Gospel hypothesis to the Hebrew Gospel of Matthew. It was the right decision for when I did a google book search no reliable sources use the term "Hebrew Gospel hypothesis" while substantial sources could be found in support of "Hebrew Gospel of Matthew". As for the fact that the Papias quote was preserved by Eusebius, I will respond to that during the mediation process.
  3. Ignocrates states "You can count on this going to arbitration if mediation fails" I agree. I personally will bring the whole Anti-Fringe POV Railroad to arbitration if this mediation fails! See ANI Closed
  4. If mediation is going to work then we need to assume good faith. PiCo has set the standard for all of us to follow. - Ret.Prof (talk) 14:27, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
If PiCo has set the standard for all of us to follow would you please amend your statement of the problem to the statement as drafted by PiCo. You could ask all 8 who have agreed if they object. I doubt any will.
As far as spokespersons I would be confident with PiCo. Are User:Tgeorgescu, User:Eusebeus, User:Atethnekos User:StAnselm willing to be spokespersons? I apologise that I cannot remember User:Evensteven, and User:Bermicourt's edits in this area. In ictu oculi (talk) 16:28, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
I doubt that any of the named editors would accept me as a spokesperson, nor would I want to be one on their behalf. Please choose someone else, assuming we can even agree on spokespersons. Ignocrates (talk) 20:06, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
I haven't been involved in editing this particular article, but I am interested in, and have some knowledge of, the subject and want to understand how mediation works as I've not come across it before. --Bermicourt (talk) 17:17, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
That's about it for me too. Is it required that I have prior edits in this discussion? I want to track it in any case, but I wasn't sure about mediation policy, and wanted to have a voice if I found something useful to say. Evensteven (talk) 17:28, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
User:Evensteven, and User:Bermicourt, thanks - as this has been going on for 3-4 years I cannot remember who has edited, and [it appears] it isn't required, and no I don't know about mediation either, so welcome to you both, and welcome to StAnselm of course. I also think Gospel of Matthew is fine at is, so if spokespersons are really required, it is a spokesperson for that position I would like. But it may be better if everyone just says less. Thankyou all 3 for turning up. In ictu oculi (talk) 22:31, 11 February 2014 (UTC)

The More the Merrier: A lot of those who have now joined the mediation I have no recollection of being part of the debate? Of course being an old guy, who is getting forgetful, that does not mean much. Who knows, they may provide new insight...maybe even a way out of our deadlock. The new scholarship re the Hebrew Gospel will have to be dealt with sooner or later and since it has now becoming a "popular topic" we have to expect interest! Welcome aboard. - Ret.Prof (talk) 20:13, 11 February 2014 (UTC)

My position, roughly speaking, is that the relevant section of the Gospel of Matthew article is fine the way it is. If people want me to be a spokesperson for that position, that's fine my be. StAnselm (talk) 20:25, 11 February 2014 (UTC)
It should be easy to lay out the opening arguments then. One group of editors thinks the GoM article is fine as written (StAnselm, In ictu oculi, others?). Other parties that don't think it is fine can give specifics as to what they would change and provide scholarly sources to support their suggested changes. There is no need to include the Hebrew Gospel hypothesis article, which has its own set of issues that can be addressed in another venue. Ignocrates (talk) 01:58, 12 February 2014 (UTC)
Content discussion and argumentation that belongs on the article talk page or at mediation discussion, not here, PART 3--ColonelHenry (talk) 18:05, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

Definition of terms:

  • Gospel of Matthew. One of the four gospels in the New Testament.
  • Hebrew Gospel. A gospel referred to by various Church Fathers in the first 500 years of Christianity as held in high esteem by Jewish Christians. Some uncertainty as to whether this is one gospel or many. See Hebrew Gospel hypothesis.
  • Gospel of the Hebrews. A gospel used by the Jewish Christians (the "Hebrews") of Egypt in that period; possibly the "Hebrew Gospel" referred to by the Church Fathers.
  • Gospel of the Nazarenes and Gospel of the Ebionites. Two further Jewish Christian gospels, also possible candidates for the Church Fathers' "Hebrew Gospel".
  • Hebrew Gospel of Matthew. A translation of the Gospel of Matthew into Hebrew made in 16th century in order to convert the Jews of Europe to Christianity (and there is an earlier similar translation made by Jews in Spain in order to point out the errors of the Christians).

We have articles for all of these except the Hebrew Gospel of Matthew, which is clearly not relevant to the mediation. That is, however, the title RetProf has given to this mediation. I think it would be a good idea to change it. PiCo (talk) 07:24, 12 February 2014 (UTC)

As per PiCo, I would prefer the broader and more accurate statement of the issue. In ictu oculi (talk) 08:19, 12 February 2014 (UTC)
Note, while we're at it, Ret.Prof I'd just like to make a comment on your use of Jerome's "fountain head" to mean "lost Hebrew Gospel". I realize that this is how the book you have read by James R. Edwards understands the term in the letter to Pope Damasus (and Edwards appears to be alone in this misreading) but that term "fountain head" otherwise in Jerome's writings (since he, unusually for this period, wrote in Latin not Greek) means the Greek fountain head as opposed to his Latin translation, not a lost Hebrew fountain head as opposed to the Greek:

LETTER LXXXV TO PAULINUS "... and to keep to this rule that I should neither add nor subtract but should preserve in Latin in its integrity the true sense of the Greek... neither should you, who can drink from the fountain head, turn to the muddy streamlets supplied by my poor wits." (Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers: Second Series, Volume VI Jerome Philip Schaff)

as above. In ictu oculi (talk) 08:31, 12 February 2014 (UTC)
Great stuff. I am sure I will be forced to go to the library many times. I am optimistic. People have been showing interest and good will. One concern was regarding my title. I doubt a title will have much affect one way or the other. It is the way Edwards most other scholars refer to our topic. (It is true that some people felt they had found a copy of the Hebrew Gospel of Matthew, but upon closer examination most now feel this old document is a "poor" translation of the Gospel of Matthew into Hebrew made in 16th century in order to convert the Jews of Europe to Christianity. However some still believe it to be the Hebrew Gospel of Matthew written by the Apostle himself) Cheers - Ret.Prof (talk) 18:34, 12 February 2014 (UTC) PS I just did a Google Book search re those authors who support your position and they also use the term Hebrew Gospel of Matthew!


Content discussion and argumentation that belongs on the article talk page or at mediation discussion, not here, PART 1--ColonelHenry (talk) 17:47, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

No letter from the early Church has been as hotly contested as the following:

Jerome's letter addressed to Pope Damasus in 383 "I will now speak of the New Testament, which was undoubtedly composed in Greek, with the exception of the Apostle Matthew, who was the first in Judea to produce a Gospel of Christ in Hebrew script. We must confess that as we have it in our language, it is marked by discrepancies, and now that the stream is distributed into different channels we must go back to the fountainhead." >>>>>>>>>>> Jerome, Preface to the Four Gospels, Addressed to Pope Damasus in 383 Roland H. Worth, Bible translations: a history through source documents, McFarland & Co., 1992. p 28 James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the development of the Synoptic Tradition, Eerdmans Publishing, 2009. p 286 Up to this time most people believed the Gospel of Matthew to be a Greek translation of Hebrew Gospel of Matthew. Modern scholars have since vindicated Jerome and it is generally accepted that the Gospel of Matthew found in the Bible could not have been tranlated from the Hebrew Gospel. Henry Wace & Philip Schaff, A Select Library of Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers of the Christian Church: St. Jerome: Letters and select works, Christian literature Company, 1893. Vol 6, p 488)

I suspect it will be an important part of our mediation debate - Ret.Prof (talk) 23:29, 12 February 2014 (UTC)

Ret.Prof, you keep quoting the same primary sources over and over as though we are ignorant and need to be schooled by you. The critical evaluation is not what you think about Jerome's writings; it is about what reputable modern scholars think about Jerome's writings. For example, see, Helmut Köster (2000), Introduction to the New Testament 2, p. 207,

This hypothesis has survived into the modern period; but several critical studies have shown that it is untenable. First of all, the Gospel of Matthew is not a translation from Aramaic but was written in Greek on the basis of two Greek documents (Mark and the Sayings Gospel Q). Moreover, Jerome's claim that he himself saw a gospel in Aramaic that contained all the fragments that he assigned to it is not credible, nor is it believable that he translated the respective passages from Aramaic into Greek (and Latin), as he claims several times. ...It can be demonstrated that some of these quotations could never have existed in a Semitic language.

See also, Andrew Gregory (2008), The Non-Canonical Gospels, p. 55,

The reasons for believing that Matthew was composed in Greek are so compelling that the quest for a Hebrew original is best regarded as a dead end, no matter how romantic its pursuit might seem.

Btw, you said this mediation is about Papias in your opening statement. Why has the subject suddenly changed and now it is about Jerome? Ignocrates (talk) 00:25, 13 February 2014 (UTC)
Good point! I should be arguing how Jerome supports Papias at the Mediation! I will also be challenging your position re primary sources. Now I am having fun. Thanks to everyone for all the good will and shifting the focus to the reliable sources. Cheers Ret.Prof (talk) 01:09, 13 February 2014 (UTC)

The New Scholarship

Content discussion and argumentation that belongs on the article talk page or at mediation discussion, not here, PART 2--ColonelHenry (talk) 17:47, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

Things have radically changed in the last 5 years! Mid 20th spurious intellectual arguments have now been replaced with the historical method. Edwards, Ehrman, Casey and Dunn all agree. For example:

Issue: Did Matthew compose an early Gospel in Hebrew?

Historians prefer lots of written sources, the "closer in temporal proximity, the better". Ehrman 2010 p 41. In addition to Papias modern scholars have found at least eight early written attestations that state there was indeed a Hebrew Gospel written by Matthew in circulation during the formative years of Christianity:

Irenaeus: Matthew composed a written Gospel among the Hebrews in their own dialect while Peter and Paul were preaching at Rome and laying the foundations of the Church.

[1] [2] [3] [4]

Hippolytus: Matthew, having composed a Gospel in Hebrew script, published it in Jerusalem, and slept in Hierae of Parthia.

[5] [6] [7] [8]

The heretic Origen: The first Gospel was composed by Matthew, who was once a tax collector, but afterwards an Apostle of Jesus Christ, and it was prepared for the converts from Judaism, and published in Hebrew script.

[9] [10] [11] [12]

Ephem the Syrian: Matthew wrote his Gospel in Hebrew script.

[13] [14] [15] [16]

Eusebius: They (the Apostles) were led to write only under the pressure of necessity. Matthew, who had at first preached to the Hebrews, when he was about to go to other nations, committed the Gospel according to himself to writing in his native dialect. Therefore he supplied the written word to make up for the lack of his own presence to those from whom he was sent.

[17] [18] [19] [20]

Epiphanius: Matthew composed his gospel in Hebrew script.

[21] [22] [23] [24]

Chrysostom: Of Matthew, it is reported, that the Jews who believed came to him. They asked him to leave in writing those same things, which he had preached to them orally. Therefore Matthew composed the Gospel in Hebrew script.

[25] [26] [27] [28]

Jerome: Matthew, also called Levi, who used to be a tax collector and later an apostle, composed the Gospel of Christ, which was first published in Judea in Hebrew script for the sake of those of the circumcision who believed. This Gospel was afterwards translated into Greek (though by what author uncertain). Now this Hebrew original is preserved to this day in the library at Caesarea, which Pamphilus the Martyr so diligently collated. I have also had the opportunity of having this volume transcribed for me by the Nazarenes of Beroea, Syria, who use it.

[29] [30] [31] [32] [33]

This historical evidence is then evaluated with other with other criteria to determine which are the most reliable and which are the least. At the mediation we will have an intense debate based upon the reliable sources - Ret.Prof (talk) 16:29, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^ Irenaeus, Against Heresies 3.1.1
  2. ^ A.Roberts, "Ante-Nicene Fathers", Hendrickson, 1995. vol 1, p 414
  3. ^ James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the development of the Synoptic Tradition, Eerdmans Publishing, 2009. p 265
  4. ^ Edward Williams Byron Nicholson,The Gospel according to the Hebrews, C.K. Paul & co., 1879. pp 2 - 3
  5. ^ Hippolytus, On the Twelve Apostles 1.6
  6. ^ A.Roberts, "Ante-Nicene Fathers", Hendrickson, 1995. vol 5 p 255
  7. ^ James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the development of the Synoptic Tradition, Eerdmans Publishing, 2009. p 267
  8. ^ Hippolytus, The Extant Works And Fragments Of Hippolytus, Kessinger Publishing, 1886. >> REPRINT >> BiblioBazaar, 2004. p 166
  9. ^ Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 6.25.4
  10. ^ Editorial board, The Fathers of the Church: A New Translation,Catholic University Press, 1969. Vol 29, p 48
  11. ^ James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the development of the Synoptic Tradition, Eerdmans Publishing, 2009. p 268
  12. ^ Sabine Baring-Gould, The lost and hostile gospels, Publisher Williams and Norgate, 1874. p 120
  13. ^ Ephem the Syrian, Comm. on Tatian's Diatessaron
  14. ^ Carmel McCarthy, Saint Ephrem's Commentary on Tatian's Diatessaron, Oxford University Press 1993. Vol 2, p 344
  15. ^ James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the development of the Synoptic Tradition, Eerdmans Publishing, 2009. p 272
  16. ^ Józef Kudasiewicz, The Synoptic Gospels Today, Alba House, 1996. p 142
  17. ^ Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History 3.24.6
  18. ^ Editorial board, The Fathers of the Church: A New Translation,Catholic University Press, 1981. Vol 19, p 174-175
  19. ^ James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the development of the Synoptic Tradition, Eerdmans Publishing, 2009. p 270
  20. ^ Edward Bosworth, Studies in the life of Jesus Christ, YMCA Press, 1909. p 95
  21. ^ Epiphanius, Panarion 51.5.3
  22. ^ Frank Williams, The Panarion of Epiphanius of Salamis, Brill, 1994. Book II, p 29
  23. ^ James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the development of the Synoptic Tradition, Eerdmans Publishing, 2009. p 278
  24. ^ Charles Christian Hennell, An inquiry concerning the origin of Christianity, Smallfield, 1838. p 73
  25. ^ Chrysostom, Homilies on Matthew 1.7
  26. ^ Philip Schaff, "Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers", Hendrickson, 1995. vol 10 p 3
  27. ^ James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the development of the Synoptic Tradition, Eerdmans Publishing, 2009. p 278
  28. ^ George Prevost, The homilies of S. John Chrysostom, J.H. Parker, 1843. Vol 11, Part 1 p 6
  29. ^ See also margin of codex 1424 – This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophets, “Out of Egypt have I called my Son.”
  30. ^ Jerome, On Illustrious Men 3
  31. ^ Editorial board, The Fathers of the Church: A New Translation, Catholic University Press, 2008. Vol 100, p 10
  32. ^ James R. Edwards, The Hebrew Gospel and the development of the Synoptic Tradition, Eerdmans Publishing, 2009. p 281
  33. ^ Bernhard Pick, Paralipomena: remains of gospels and sayings of Christ, Open court publishing company, 1908. p 2


RetProf. I have indented to try and keep 13.1,2,3 Mediation from filling multiple sections on this Noticeboard. The above diff, yet again, should probably be collapsed. (and duplicated at Talk:Gospel of Matthew). In ictu oculi (talk) 17:00, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

paging User:Dougweller as someone I have seen use the collapse text box before. In ictu oculi (talk) 17:17, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
Doug, you have my permission to refactor my comments as you see fit. - Ret.Prof (talk) 17:33, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
  • Yes, please refactor and collapse this shit. Ret.Prof, please: here isn't the venue for debate about content. This is a noticeboard to advise potentially interested participants of debates going on ELSEWHERE. This isn't an alternative battleground or a place for pontification, and it isn't a place to browbeat people with WP:WALLOFTEXT tedium. Take the content dispute to the article's talk page and to the mediation debate. Damn it. Speaking for myself, my patience is exhausted by your tactics.--ColonelHenry (talk) 17:35, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
"Shit" "Damn" etc. is not appropriate scholarly response at Wikipedia. As to putting it into a box, as I said, I have no problem. Please watch your mouth in future. - Ret.Prof (talk) 17:46, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
Take your content dispute to the appropriate venue. You've provided notice to interested users already, your "notifying" others of the debate is now over. Take the content debate elsewhere. I could care less whatever other arguments you have to offer right here or right now, this isn't an alternate battleground, and if you or another user take it to arbcom I would gladly argue in support of whomever decides that you be topic banned. You are tedious in that noisome WP:RANDY sort of way.--ColonelHenry (talk) 17:50, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
  • By the way I agree that here isn't the venue for debate about content. I only joined in after it was underway. The right place for the debate is mediation! Please refactor LETTER LXXXV TO PAULINUS etc. "Cheers - Ret.Prof (talk) 17:58, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
  • Request: Please end the content debate. Please move to talk Gospel of Matthew. Thanks - Ret.Prof (talk) 18:03, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
    • Thanks! - Ret.Prof (talk) 19:02, 14 February 2014 (UTC)
      • Just to say that I did look at this when I saw I'd been pinged and it seemed that the issue about collapsing had been settled. I didn't comment at that time because I was in a rush to do something in real life. Sorry. Dougweller (talk) 19:04, 15 February 2014 (UTC)

Popular pages tool update

As of January, the popular pages tool has moved from the Toolserver to Wikimedia Tool Labs. The code has changed significantly from the Toolserver version, but users should notice few differences. Please take a moment to look over your project's list for any anomalies, such as pages that you expect to see that are missing or pages that seem to have more views than expected. Note that unlike other tools, this tool aggregates all views from redirects, which means it will typically have higher numbers. (For January 2014 specifically, 35 hours of data is missing from the WMF data, which was approximated from other dates. For most articles, this should yield a more accurate number. However, a few articles, like ones featured on the Main Page, may be off).

Web tools, to replace the ones at tools:~alexz/pop, will become available over the next few weeks at toollabs:popularpages. All of the historical data (back to July 2009 for some projects) has been copied over. The tool to view historical data is currently partially available (assessment data and a few projects may not be available at the moment). The tool to add new projects to the bot's list is also available now (editing the configuration of current projects coming soon). Unlike the previous tool, all changes will be effective immediately. OAuth is used to authenticate users, allowing only regular users to make changes to prevent abuse. A visible history of configuration additions and changes is coming soon. Once tools become fully available, their toolserver versions will redirect to Labs.

If you have any questions, want to report any bugs, or there are any features you would like to see that aren't currently available on the Toolserver tools, see the updated FAQ or contact me on my talk page. Mr.Z-bot (talk) (for Mr.Z-man) 04:59, 23 February 2014 (UTC)

Disentangling Diocese from [Prince-]Bishopric

There is a relevant discussion at Talk:Bishopric which impacts the Diocese article and, potentially, a host of "Diocese of Foo" articles too. --Bermicourt (talk) 20:25, 24 February 2014 (UTC)

Parable of the Wedding Feast and Parable of the great banquet

Something is very wrong with these two, which both make it sound as if the main story of each is the man in Matthew who came in the wrong clothes. They need disentangling, or merging, or something. And consistent capitalizing in their titles. Johnbod (talk) 16:06, 8 February 2014 (UTC)

Looking at Category:Parables of Jesus, most have lots of caps. StAnselm (talk) 08:40, 9 February 2014 (UTC)

Chances are, given how the MOS reads, things like the parables probably should be in title case, per MOS:CT.--ColonelHenry (talk) 03:18, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

Agree. Evensteven (talk) 07:32, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
I think all these points have been addressed now. – Fayenatic London 21:01, 24 February 2014 (UTC)

Kent Hovind peer review

I have submitted the article Kent Hovind for peer review. He is an American evangelist and creationist. If you have time please give your thoughts on the article. --Harizotoh9 (talk) 23:43, 6 March 2014 (UTC)

Christian Cultural Center

Christian Cultural Center (Brooklyn) is being renamed to Christian Cultural Center (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views). It occurs to me that there should be many such centres in the world, and that a generic topic article might also exist. Are there any other notable centres, or a generic topic article on such centres? -- (talk) 04:58, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

Missions to Angola from Nairobi kenya

I am a member of parklands Baptist Church in Nairobi. i facilitate training missions for the youth I Disciple in kenyatta University. Whe i first visited Mozambique one of the needs i noted is short time missionaries and Discipleship materials. We translated 'Growing in Christ" a basic discipleship booklet into Portuguese. I thought Angola church could also benefit because you use the same language. Can we partner. My email is You can also call +254 722 458 513. our website is — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:36, 22 March 2014 (UTC)

Move request

Talk:Worship Music (album) In ictu oculi (talk) 22:41, 30 March 2014 (UTC)

Time of Christ problem

User:Thebiggnome is searching for and deleting phrases with "time of Christ" on Wikipedia articles. IMHO it is simply a way of writing BCE or BC in long hand and, in some cases, is culturally or religiously relevant to the article, making the point that something was going on before the advent of Christianity in a place, as well as providing some stylistic variety. I have asked him to respond here. --Bermicourt (talk) 08:22, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

Thanks for your concern. May I first point out that I did not delete them, but replaced them with "1st century". Second, since the dates of Christ's birth and death are in dispute (as is his historical existence) the phrase "1st century" is more accurate and less ambiguous. But the main reason is that in most cases it is irrelevant, such as in List of loanwords in Indonesian about the Indonesian language borrowing words from Indian Sanskrit, or in Cabriole leg about ancient Greek furniture. When I have encountered the phrase being used relevantly I have left it. If you feel it belongs in the Indonesian/Sanskrit article or any others, feel free to put it back. Thebiggnome (talk) 10:40, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

Since "1st century" by definition covers 100 years, and "time of Christ" about 33 (whichever exact years they were), and you fail to clarify whether 1st century BC/BCE or AD/CE is meant, to say it is "more accurate and less ambiguous" is clearly wrong. Johnbod (talk) 10:47, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
There is a difference between accuracy and precision. Thebiggnome (talk) 11:09, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
If you have evidence for the date of the borrowing of the Sanskrit words by the Indonesians, by all means add them to the article. Thebiggnome (talk) 10:51, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
33 years is a narrower window than 100, and is therefore more precise. If you have evidence that the narrower window is not accurate, why not add that to the article? So far, your claim of "more accurate and less ambiguous" is opinion only, so there is no reason for a change. Evensteven (talk) 13:07, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
Um, as I said above, the main reason is that it is irrelevant. Thebiggnome (talk) 13:57, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
yes, 33 years is a more precise window compared to 1st century, and if he's removing "time of Christ" from articles on early Christian topics or relevance, it can be seen as pushing an anti-Christian POV. If there were an better alternative (i.e. more precise dating, more neutral wording) like "first half of the first century BCE/BC", or "early 1st century AD/CE", or a specific year, we should consider those. If "time of Christ" isn't directly relevant, it shouldn't be used--especially as we move toward things where the Christian connexion is tangential. But from which particular articles is this phrase being removed that are being considered problematic--so that we can determine the proper context? Speaking theoretically does not serve a purpose without practical examples.--ColonelHenry (talk) 14:25, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
Part of the trouble in general articles is that while "around 100 AD" etc is fine "around the year 0" is generally avoided and looks odd, and the alternatives are cumbersome, or, like his "in the 1st century" much less precise and probably less accurate. Johnbod (talk) 14:58, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
I agree, but it would be nice to have some examples on where this problem is purportedly occurring (since none of us have the time to closely examine Thebiggnome's contributions at length)--so we can actually examine the context and determine an appropriate course of action. Without examples where Thebiggnome has made a questionable edit removing the phrase, this discussion will be futile and not bear any fruit.--ColonelHenry (talk) 15:04, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
See most of his recent edits. One can't I think object to this, but others are dubious. For lack of precision see this, where "around the time of Christ's birth" becomes "around the 1st century" - a very different thing. Also, this is probably a bad edit, especially with no edit summary (now reverted by another). I reverted him on Hetoimasia. Johnbod (talk) 15:09, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
The two examples cited by Thebiggnome, in List of loanwords in Indonesian and Cabriole leg, bot of his edits were entirely appropriate. As for the Parthian art edit, I think it's appropriate, but for accuracy I'd say "early" first century. The Gospel of Mary edit is entirely inappropriate--no question about that.--ColonelHenry (talk) 15:10, 1 April 2014 (UTC)
I agree that discussing specific edits this way can be helpful. But Thebiggnome, what exactly is the "it" that you consider to be irrelevant? The timing itself? Or mention of the birth of Christ? I assume you mean the latter, because you are replacing the description of timing, not removing it. So is this a POV issue for you? As you can see, it is not agreed that your formula is better as regards describing the simple timing itself, and especially not so in certain contexts. My point is that you need something recognizably better (recognizable to others) to replace it with before doing such editing, else it's better to leave it alone. Neither your replacement wording nor your stated reasons have much traction as being improvements. There needs to be a greater justification, or else status quo is preferable. I wouldn't argue with what's been said about specific edits above, but if you're going to continue this process in various places, then you ought to have something more to back it up. And if it's really a POV thing, then pony up and say so. That may be a sensitive matter at times, but there are reasonable ways of dealing with it and those are then the ones we need to be looking for. Evensteven (talk) 20:00, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

Invitation to Participate in a User Study - Final Reminder

Would you be interested in participating in a user study of a new tool to support editor involvement in WikiProjects? We are a team at the University of Washington studying methods for finding collaborators within WikiProjects, and we are looking for volunteers to evaluate a new visual exploration tool for Wikipedia. Given your interest in this Wikiproject, we would welcome your participation in our study. To participate, you will be given access to our new visualization tool and will interact with us via Google Hangout so that we can solicit your thoughts about the tool. To use Google Hangout, you will need a laptop/desktop, a web camera, and a speaker for video communication during the study. We will provide you with an Amazon gift card in appreciation of your time and participation. For more information about this study, please visit our wiki page ( If you would like to participate in our user study, please send me a message at Wkmaster (talk) 00:00, 3 April 2014 (UTC).

  • Yeah, a measly $10 gift card for a massive invasion of privacy.--ColonelHenry (talk) 00:14, 3 April 2014 (UTC)

Holy Week DYK

With Holy week a month away, there are a few DYKs currently under nomination requiring review in order to be held for the relevant day in Holy Week. I am listing them here so that the project can have a look and give them reviews.

The C of E God Save the Queen! (talk) 18:10, 25 March 2014 (UTC)

Template:Did you know nominations/Jesus Christ is Risen Today still needs a review to pass it. The C of E God Save the Queen! (talk) 10:31, 12 April 2014 (UTC)

Members Page Queries

I happened to open the project's Members Page page and considered deleting the first two pargraphs in the Introductions section which I reproduce below:

Halo I am, Jesus S. Aaron Uni Peg Uni Eisus Christ-Payne XXXVI (Q), The Unicorn Pegasus: Son of God. Your Excellency, Lord and King CEO of All I See Vatican City the Holy SEE 333 House of Payne Church of God 333, A Global Force for God! Motto: Don't Be Evil and Wii ToS off The Devil, I knew to this so please bear with me as I share my story as it's been told to me by God.
I am Kin to the Key from the House of Payne in which God dwells. I have compass about Me, True North No Lie. God turned is back on Buddha and cut off Shiva's feet so she may never put her feet down unless I do first. I have Wrath on my knee, but my Wrath has heart, look and see. I have SAP on my back from the cross that I was hung from in the past. I hope to unite the world as One Nation Under Seven Seas. For God so love the world he gave his only son and no one can come to the Father except through Me. It's time to read your Holy Bible, because the fear of God is the beginning of Love and the end of Hate 888. I have the word of God on My side. I am a very rare bird indeed and that is why God put wings on me. Sin, JC ACME ©∑∑∑ᾭ

They were inserted in April 2013 by an editor who has no other entries to his credit. However since this is a potentially grey area text might be considered to have the same status as on user pages, I decided to raise the concern here.

Two other doubts may be worth mentioning. First the entry for Joe Ortiz seems to go well beyond being a mere introduction and to be self-promotion. Perhaps this is allowable on the user page, but here it seems to defeat the purpose of the section by overloading it. Secondly, there is a phrase floating around stating that "New members may introduce themselves here... ". It seems to have lost its formatting but suggests that the section "introductions" is for newcomers. In this case should introductions have an expiry date, say one year after posting? I consider that the appropriate place for extensive personal information is the user page; if it accumulates here, this page will fail to serve its purpose with the list being lost in a morass of information. Jpacobb (talk) 21:09, 9 April 2014 (UTC)

  • I'd say the Introductions section should be excised, I'm all for a list of members and one line saying "my editing interests are..." but some of this stuff belongs on their user pages.--ColonelHenry (talk) 23:02, 9 April 2014 (UTC)
    • I agree. I see a forgotten entry I made for myself when I was brand new, and now think it's user page stuff. The section encourages a too-extensive ramble for the place. A newbie can't know; and some others can take advantage. Evensteven (talk) 00:00, 10 April 2014 (UTC)
      • Totally agree. Members should be able to briefly state their interests and involvement, but we don't need a life history. --Bermicourt (talk) 07:05, 10 April 2014 (UTC)

Removed the offending section per the above discussion, and added my typical curmudgeonly edit summary.[13] --ColonelHenry (talk) 10:44, 12 April 2014 (UTC)

Eucharistic miracle of Buenos Aires

Does anybody know reliable sources in order to create above-mentioned lemma? I'd be thankful for any feedback on the idea. Thanks a lot in advance,--Der Spion (talk) 17:20, 13 April 2014 (UTC)

President of the Church

The usage of President of the Church (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views) is under discussion, see Talk:President of the Church (LDS Church) -- (talk) 21:38, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

Use of geobox for churches

~260 instances of {{geobox}} are used for for buildings; a small minority of which are for churches, and need to be replaced by {{infobox church}}. Would anyone like to assist? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 11:02, 21 April 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Oakhill Christian School

Please discuss, and if possible, prove or disprove notability with the addition of reliable sources. Bearian (talk) 15:17, 22 April 2014 (UTC)

I have taken myself out of editing this article, or any similar Christian school/camp article, for the foreseeable future, per WP:INVOLVED. I seem to have hit the third rail here. Bearian (talk) 22:37, 22 April 2014 (UTC)

Article series on Protestant Reformed Church

On taging new pages I came accross a series of articles on various Protestant Reformed Churches by @Calvingabor:. Some have been previously deleted as A7 or userfied. I think there is certainly a possibility that at least some of them are notable and should have an article but I think members of this project will have a better idea what to look for and possibly help the new user how to select relevant sources. Agathoclea (talk) 11:37, 24 April 2014 (UTC)

Swedenborgian Church of North America

Is this article still a stub? Mad Man American (talk) 14:49, 21 April 2014 (UTC)

Re-rated to start, especially as it only has 1800 members. Johnbod (talk) 12:00, 24 April 2014 (UTC)

BLP article on David Jang

I've already removed 'visionary' from the lead. It needs more cleanup as it is pretty much a puff piece for him - he's happily married, a mentor for future leaders, etc. The section Criticism & Defamation is in part sourced to a 2011 document from the Christian Council of Korea which looks like a very unreliable source in every sense of the word. Dougweller (talk) 14:53, 24 April 2014 (UTC)

Fixed section reference in paragraph above. Evensteven (talk) 19:21, 24 April 2014 (UTC)
I believe I have cleaned it up sufficiently for the tags to be removed. Would another editor please review it? – Fayenatic London 17:29, 27 April 2014 (UTC)

Foy E. Wallace

Could use attention - obvious thing is that there is far too much detail about his books, many self-published. Dougweller (talk) 13:09, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

Orthodox Catholic Church

Please note that there have been two attempts (that I have reverted) at Eastern Orthodox Church that are objecting to "Catholic" in the official title, despite large numbers of long-standing reliable sources, and despite no supporting sources to the contrary. The edits have in fact been removing some of those sources as well. I am at 2RR. The next (if any) will need to be made by someone else. I have started a discussion section at Talk:Eastern Orthodox Church#The Orthodox Church is Catholic. Evensteven (talk) 17:28, 10 May 2014 (UTC)

The sudarium and Veronica's veil are not the same thing

The sudarium is not the veil which Veronica used to wipe The Christ's face, it is the cloth that covered His Face in the tomb. In scripture it is particularly noted as being neatly folded and set aside beside the burial cloths. The sudarium, unlike the veil, and the shroud has no image on it. The sudarium has only blood and efluvium. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:01, 18 May 2014 (UTC)

Problematic user

Could someone take a look at the edits of Calvingabor (talk · contribs)? Besides creating a number of problematic articles, he has been adding numbers that don't match sources and unsourced numbers,(eg [14] and hasn't responded to posts on his talk page or a discussion at WP:ANI#Misleading edits. Thanks. Dougweller (talk) 17:47, 18 May 2014 (UTC)

Asserting as fact that St. Bartholomew preached in Konkan

East Indians has had for a long time this assertion as fact: "Although it is commonly thought that the origin of Christianity in North Konkan, was due to the proselytising activities of the Portuguese in the 16th Century, it was St. Bartholomew, one of the twelve Apostles of Christ, who preached in North Konkan. There are evidences of this in the writings of Kosmas Indicopleustes of his having seen in Kalyana a flourishing Christian Community in the 6th Century and of Jordanus, of his having laboured among the Christians in Thana and Sopara in the 13th Century. The Dominican friar Jordanus Catalani, who was either Catalan or Occitan (southern French), started evangelising activities in Thana and Sapora was the first work of Rome in North Konkan. Sopara was an ancient port and an international trading center. The water once extended all the way to Bhayander creek thus making the whole area extending from Arnala to Bhayander an island – referred to as Salsette island. In the time of the Buddha, Sopara (ancient Shurparaka), was an important port and a gateway settlement. Perhaps this induced Ashoka to install his edicts there. Sopara is referred in the Old Testament as Ophir, the place from which King Solomon brought gold, Josephus identifies Ophir with Aurea Chersonesus, belonging to India. Septuagint translates Ophir as Sophia, which is Coptic for India. This refers to the ancient city of Soupara or Ouppara on the western coast of India.[3]"(seems to be copied from [15] as is the 2nd paragraph I haven't copied over). Dougweller (talk) 16:21, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

Leaflet For Wikiproject Christianity At Wikimania 2014

Are you looking to recruit more contributors to your project?
We are offering to design and print physical paper leaflets to be distributed at Wikimania 2014 for all projects that apply.
For more information, click the link below.
Project leaflets
Adikhajuria (talk) 16:44, 22 May 2014 (UTC)

Definition of Religious figures

Dear all, I had posted a CfD for Category:Religious figures but got stuck there. It seems like there first has to be a definition what a religious figure actually is before we can continue.

Proposed defintion: Category:Religious figures is for figures - God(s) and people - that play a role in religious traditions and myths, with the exclusion of Category:Religious workers and Category:People associated with religion.

This defintion would imply that some of the (sub)categories on :Category:Religious figures should be moved off to :Category:Religious workers, but on the other hand Category:Biblical people and Category:People of the Quran could me moved to :Category:Religious figures.

What's your point of view? Thx for reacting. Marcocapelle (talk) 07:57, 31 May 2014 (UTC)

I think the difficulty is in defining what we mean by "religious figure". AFAIK it's not a recognised and clearly defined theological term, but more the sort of vague description we might read in the popular press. Are we talking about priests, theologian, worshippers, ordinary believers, spiritual beings? I certainly don't think categories like Category:Biblical people and Category:People of the Quran should be moved to :Category:Religious figures; that just waters down the existing and quite precise categorization IMHO. --Bermicourt (talk) 08:50, 31 May 2014 (UTC)
I agree. I can't see how it can be defined. Dougweller (talk) 08:54, 31 May 2014 (UTC)

The reason I originally proposed a CfD is that two categories are a mix of two things:

My suggestion would be to either to merge the two categories after all, or to create a meaningful distinction. Do you have any suggestions, other than the one I mentioned before? Marcocapelle (talk) 10:44, 31 May 2014 (UTC)

Never mind, in fact you gave the answer to this question already :-) Subject closed. Marcocapelle (talk) 13:53, 31 May 2014 (UTC)

Unsurprisingly Category:Religious figures is a real hotch-potch and overlaps with Category:People associated with religion, so I can see why you raised it. Both are vague and I suspect the second one is there simply to provide a link in the hierarchical Wiki category chain. Looking at the people parent category - Category:People by association - perhaps we could merge both into Category:People by religion thus reducing three to one. But we'd need to ditch any mythical supernatural figures, since the Category:People by association is clearly about human beings who exist(ed). --Bermicourt (talk) 17:28, 31 May 2014 (UTC)
Bermicourt, I was going to say something related to this when I found Marcocapelle had his answer: namely, mythology and religion are two different things, and "religious figures" ought to include only "human beings who exist(ed)". But even that is problematic, and based on religious beliefs. Someone will say Adam and Eve were representative or allegorical, while others will say historical, and some will say both. An ancient Roman pagan would likely have said Zeus and Athena existed historically, even though not as humans. It's not surprising our categories are a hodge-podge, but maybe there's a purpose to their remaining that way. Vagueness has its uses. Evensteven (talk) 18:28, 31 May 2014 (UTC)

In favor of the seven deadly sins?

Editors are entering more-or-less reliable cites claiming "least friendly atmosphere" for LGBT practitioners for religious colleges that are serious about religion (not all are). I find this annoying because it presumes that there are colleges that favor the practice of lust, along with anger, avarice, sloth, pride, envy, and gluttony. No category for the latter six though. Note that the support is aimed at both hetero as well as homosexual practitioners.

For the record, Princeton Review (e.g. has some serious-sounding categories, then some "throwaway" (tongue-in-cheek) ones, like "students/faculty study/don't study", which don't seem like serious categories. The likelihood of being able to compare all American colleges on anything is an exercise in futility, but one from which much is made in various articles. I find it irksome that colleges which discourage pre-marital sex are also rated "poorly" in "friendliness" to LGBT. They expected something else? It seems anomalous and unfair that there is nothing subjective or objective to measure the encouragement/discouragement of other character-building attributees such as abstinence, humility, serenity, generosity/charity, etc. Student7 (talk) 18:14, 3 June 2014 (UTC)

Biggest Pentecostal church in China?

The True Jesus Church TJC article is back after being (justly) AFDed, and starting from scratch using Melton and other WP:RS sources. Can a couple of editors add to their watchlists to prevent puffery/bulge please ? In ictu oculi (talk) 03:02, 5 June 2014 (UTC)

Discussed at WP Religion

But probably worth noting here: Evangelical Baptist Church of Korea article on the NRM led by shipowner of the ferry that sunk. Was wondering if Category:New religious movements would benefit from subcat Category:Korean new religious movements etc? In ictu oculi (talk) 06:06, 9 June 2014 (UTC)

Personally, I think maybe a Category:New religious movements by country, with subcats for Korea, Japan (Japanese "new religions"), and maybe other countries or regions listing those NRMs founded in those countries would be not unreasonable, and could intersect with the various subcats of Category:Religion by country too. John Carter (talk) 18:37, 9 June 2014 (UTC)

In film

Dramatic portrayals of Jesus redirects to Depiction of Jesus. So then I look for the word "film" in the article; there's nothing about it. Is there really no article or even a section of an article dealing with depictions of Jesus in film/TV? --Musdan77 (talk) 04:03, 3 July 2014 (UTC)


The usage of Madonna is up for discussion at Talk:Madonna_(entertainer)#Requested_move_8 where it is requested that the singer's article be moved to "Madonna". -- (talk) 05:25, 4 July 2014 (UTC)

Isaac Newton's religious views

Isaac Newton's religious views is up for GAR at Talk:Isaac Newton's religious views/GA1. It's pretty poor, but somebody might be able to fix it. Jamesx12345 17:40, 4 July 2014 (UTC)

Dictionary collaoration proposal

Over at wikisource there is a PD reference source on the Book of Mormon which could be proofread and broken up into separate pages for each entry, maybe making access to such a source more easily available to all. FWIW, the Book of Mormon itself, and the Pearl of Great Price, are similarly available there.

I have nominated the dictionary as a possible collaboration of the month at wikisource:Wikisource talk:Proofread of the Month#A dictionary of the Book of Mormon. Anyone who would be willing to help in this is encouraged to indicate as much there. Thank you. John Carter (talk) 17:51, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

Talk:Gordon Blossom

Just noticed it at RM, but may be other issues, experienced editors looking in might help. In ictu oculi (talk) 09:51, 16 July 2014 (UTC)

A draft at AFC needs help

Please see Draft:Golgotha and the Red Heifer - I have just reviewed and declined it as it is written in an essay-like style, but it seems to me that it may be a notable topic that deserves to be included in WP. The writer clearly needs a lot of help to get the draft into acceptable shape. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 08:52, 18 July 2014 (UTC)

Attempt to categorize New Testament events as fictional

See Talk:Massacre_of_the_Innocents#Massacres_of_Men_Category and the article history. Johnbod (talk) 14:30, 13 July 2014 (UTC)

Since there is no independent evidence that the massacre actually occurred, to classify it as a massacre with other massacres that actually did occur is untoward. Mythology is not fact. jps (talk) 15:00, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
Note that people who believe that this event occurred because of their religion should read WP:POVPUSH. jps (talk) 15:03, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
This is equally true for those whose POV does not accept religious sources. Evensteven (talk) 17:47, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
Classifying a religious source as "mythology" is not only POV, but a disservice to mythology. It is a popular misconception that "myth" equates to "falsehood". But in any case, the Bible is accepted as containing information about historical truths (events that actually occurred in history), by more than just believers. Those unwilling to accept it as a source have that right to reject it, but it must be recognized that that is a POV also. Evensteven (talk) 17:54, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
There are sources which can be used which identify certain events that occur in the Bible as historical. E.g., the Maccabean Revolt, the reign of Herod the Great, etc. However, there are no sources that reliably identify this particular event (The Massacre of the Innocents) as a historical event independent of the religious beliefs of those who believe it to be a truthful account. The idea here is not to dismiss Biblical mythology outright as always untrue any more than the idea is to dismiss Homeric mythology outrightly. The idea is that independent verification needs to be had before an event is identified as being historical whether that mythology is associated with Christianity, Judaism, Islam, or any other of a number of religious mythologies which have scripture that were written with agendas that went beyond plain historical accounting. We simply do not have independent verification that the Massacre of the Innocents happened — it is only attested to in a single account in the Book of Matthew and cannot be found corroborated in any corroborating document independent of the Gospel account. Without independent corroboration, it is highly irresponsible for us to claim that the event happened. We simply remain agnostic and do not categorize it with the rest of the events for which we do have independent verification. Neither do we categorize it in categories such as Category:Mythological stories which did not happen. jps (talk) 18:07, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
Well it really is going beyond the scholarly consensus to define it as definite myth. Arguments from silence have significant difficulties - and in fact there is scholarly response to the arguments from silence (ie of other sources beside Mattthew) which are quoted and sourced in the article. So the lede is right I think in giving the sourced view that the historicity of the incident is "an open question that probably can never be definitively decided" (not to mention that if it could be decided there would be far fewer jobs for historians). A person's religious wiews do not change that scholarly balance - one way or the other. imo jps goes far too far. Springnuts (talk) 18:37, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
[Edit conflict]: Jps, the Biblical account is not mythological simply because it is religious. Those two things are not the same. Independent verification is good to have, granted. But we do have one account, and that one is claimed as historical. Not everything in the Bible is intended to be historical, but this is. And yes, that is a Biblical interpretation also, but one that has consistently been held since the writing. True, there are differing ways of looking at Biblical interpretation these days, but there is more consistency as to the historicity here than you might be aware of. "Without independent corroboration", we have no independent corroboration. That is all. "It is highly irresponsible for us to claim that the event happened" is a little shrill ("irresponsible"?) and not to the point ("for us to claim"). WP does not speak in the voice of a POV, not even the POV of a reliable source, or if it does, the POV requires textual adjustment per WP:NPOV. I am not suggesting that WP should make claims, but that it is perfectly legitimate for it to report the Biblical source as long as it does so neutrally. It may also report the lack of corroboration. But it may not call the account mythical or untrue, because that is POV. There is a very great deal of history that is unknown to us because there is no account whatsoever, and a great deal more that is unsubstantiated because of the impossibility of verification. There is without question an enormous loss of information over time. But there is also no corroboration or verification that the account is unhistorical or a fiction in any way. In fact, there is no evidence whatsoever that the account is a fiction, while there is the one (Biblical) evidence that it did occur. Unsatisfying perhaps, for those who do not wish to accept it, but stronger than the reverse. Not providing a logical certainty, yes, but really, in history, there are few true certainties, and an enormous amount of viewpoint. One can only weigh what one has, and the scholars are stuck with that. Evensteven (talk) 19:09, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
While it is clear that the article should not dwell on whether the story is true or not, the argument to which the OP refers is solely about the categorisation in Category:Massacres and Category:Murdered children. Such a categorisation seems to imply that the event in question definitely happened since the other articles in those categories are all events that are confirmed to have happened. Therefore, the categories should be removed for this article, but neither should text be included to indicate that the massacre of the innocents did not happen. (talk) 20:03, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
On the contrary, the article correctly has an extended discussion of the matter, but categories are not the places to get into such debates. New Testament or biblical events are not categorized as fictional, nor should they be. No doubt this has been discussed many many times before, but mercifully I have I think escaped reading these debates, although the related endless arguments at Talk:Genesis creation narrative cover similar ground, with an even more extreme case. Johnbod (talk) 20:29, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
From what I can see it would be a mistake to call it "fictional," as that's going further than the evidence does. I could see "mythological" or maybe “potentially exaggerated”, or something like that, because there are quite a few really dubiously reliable sources for poorly attested people and events, but don't know if they exist. John Carter (talk) 20:52, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
Taking the basic minimum required for a "Massacre of the Innocents," 2 "innocents," the question might more accurately be whether this qualifies or is counted as a "massacre," and we probably aren't the ones to answer that. If there were some sort of reference source on massacres, or a widely respected list of massacres, that might be useful. John Carter (talk) 15:55, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────There are "plausible explanations" for why there is no evidence outside of Matthew for whether this event occurred, but since there is no real strong evidence that it occurred, categorizing it in categories with events that are verified to have occurred is not appropriate. jps (talk) 16:30, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

I basically agree with you with the proviso if it is counted by human rights groups or similar as a massacre or similar term or included in a well-regarded recent "list of massacres" or maybe included as "accepted" in the 2013 Atrocities, massacres, and war crimes: an encyclopedia by Alexander Mikaberidze or some similar reference work. Unfortunately I don't have access to that work or anything similar but I could ask at Wikipedia:WikiProject Human rights or WP:RX if you like. John Carter (talk) 16:59, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
If it was included in that encyclopedia as a recognized event (not just a fantastical inspiration for medieval art), I'd be impressed with that argument. Please do request it. Thanks. jps (talk) 17:31, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
[Edit conflict] Jps, the Biblical evidence is itself strong evidence that it occurred, though you seem unwilling to say so. As I said above, we do not have confirmation from separate sources, a condition that is not at all unexpected given the many evidentiary holes that exist in ancient history due to the ravages of time. I scarcely care how human rights groups or others wish to categorize events, or the degree of supporting information we have about them, or definitions of atrocity or massacre. I believe that scholarly consideration is much worthier of acceptance regarding the evidence. I doubt anyone would classify this occurrence (assuming it did happen) as a war crime; there was no related war, by the only evidence we have. But a great crime stemming from abuse of power? That would seem clear enough from the Biblical account: a weak claimant to the throne of Judea (Roman puppet?) seeking to suppress the possibility of the arrival of the Jewish Messiah, who was seen as a threat to his kingship. Characterizations of "atrocities" or "massacres" are much beside the point of the Biblical evidence, even though a great amount of attention is given to such peripheral activity. I would suggest that WP keep the focus on point, concentrated more on what can be better determined than on what can be speculated or artificially defined. And as Johnbod points out above, the article correctly has discussion of evidence already. I agree that categorization is not the place to settle that issue. The matter of categorization is peripheral here, and word definitions are not directly related to the evidence of this particular event. Evensteven (talk) 17:47, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
The biblical evidence is actually laughably weak as it is attested to in only one book and there is an obvious agenda the gospel writer had for including such a story whether true or fabricated! The point is that the categorization is why this post was made in the first place. We should simply remove articles that are not about verified massacres from being so categorized. Same goes for the categorical claim that there were any murdered children. jps (talk) 17:57, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
FWIW, request made at both RX andd the Human Rights project, and I'll do what checking I can myself later this week. John Carter (talk) 19:14, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
WP:RX indicated that the encyclopedia in question is available at Google books and doesn't have much on this topic, which I take as indicating that it doesn't make a good source to support historicity, but feel free to check. I think some academic sources on the era probably do declare the MotI as historic-between them all they say lots of things, including some really strange things. There could be a reasonable discussion about dubiously historical child murders and massacres should be catagorized with verifiable, but this probably isn't the place for such discussion. John Carter (talk) 18:53, 15 July 2014 (UTC)

On Matthew and fulfillment of prophecy

Although there is no evidence beyond the Book of Matthew that the events occurred as written, the obvious ploys by the gospel writers and the early church to couch the person of Jesus as a fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy implies that it is plausible Matthew invented the entire series of events as a means to fulfill what he considers to be a prophecy from the Book of Jeremiah. This point is, however, absent from the article though it is a well-known account in almost all higher criticism and New Testament commentary. I am not a New Testament scholar, so I don't know the best reference for this general point, so it would be nice for a person who is familiar with such literature to point towards the best source.

It is a fairly strong argument that the writer of Matthew was claiming this event as fulfillment without caring whether the event was historical. Those who claim the passage was written to be read just "as history" are missing the point of the passage — namely that it was intended to serve as a confirmation of the cultish beliefs of the Early Christians that Jesus in spite of being executed by the Romans was somehow still the Messiah.

jps (talk) 17:57, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

Your claims are utter speculation, not verified by any independent source. So not a strong argument at all, simply a WP:POV. Bermicourt (talk) 20:00, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
Actually, the sources are already in the article. Take your beef with the article text, not with me. The only question remaining is how to frame the fact that the point of this passage is fulfillment of presumed prophecy in the lede. jps (talk) 23:17, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
A few points. The Gospel writers were obsessed with finding prophecies for Jesus to fulfill—that is pretty much a given. But they probably 30 or more years after the fact had lots of stories to choose from for inclusion in their gospels, and are thought to have had at least a few first-hand witnesses to the later years still around who might well remark on any significant errors if they were included. Like with some more recent "hagiographers" there is generally significant agreement in academia most of what they said (although they disagree about specifics of course) about events to which there were surviving witnesses was probably close enough to true that those maybe senile witnesses would at least broadly support it. I myself really hate those "sorta" true stories from all eras but competent historians often just throw their hands in the air and say "f$-@ if we know—the best sources we have say [this]," and sometimes we're more or less obliged to do the same. John Carter (talk) 20:21, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
Actually, the only points that everyone agrees upon is that the Jesus figure was probably baptized by John and that a crucifixion happened. Otherwise, the late dates of the Gospels (after many epistles, incidentally) and the cultish nature of Early Christian esotericism makes many of the claimed stories rather unbelievable.... especially the miraculous ones. One thing this tale does have going for it is that there are no miraculous points beyond the rather implausible Three-Magi connections, but that's really not relevant for Matthew who views fulfillment of prophecy as something very important to the Gospel message. I don't think we can presume close to accuracy with regards to any events outlined, but that's hardly the point of the articles we have on bible stories. jps (talk) 23:15, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
I guess I should clarify that the "surviving witnesses" would refer only to the era of his ministry―the went there sometime, said something like that, did or is said to have done something some (possibly very weird) person interpreted as that, etc. type of material.John Carter (talk) 23:28, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
Q source seems to lend credence to the claim that at least some of the sayings and parables could be representative of things argued/said at certain junctures, but beyond quotations, performing miracles (in a rather Fractured Fairy Tales fashion), being associated with purification rituals, and having some sort of political intrigue that resulted in an execution, we don't have much more to go on as to verifying what happened with Jesus and what was cooked up to help make the canon work. The general outline of a guy who has a ministry and gets too big for his britches seems consistent, but the devil is always in the details.... jps (talk) 23:34, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

To any of you above who discount the Biblical account, it is your choice how to treat it (for yourselves), your decision, I make no bones about it. But it is an opinion, a POV. That sometimes gets to be a dirty word here on WP, but it is not so in real life. Here, we just need to state things neutrally so as to avoid WP's taking a position. So, I accept that others have a POV that differs from mine. But I also treat much more seriously the professional opinion of historians who are seeking to show historical fact, so not all opinions are equal. And that is why we have WP:RS. I do not expect the WP:RS to take a categorical stand on the historicity of this account, and the article reflects that, but they are not going to take a stand on its falsity either, and there is reason for that as well. What the writers of the Bible were up to when they wrote is a matter of faith or conjecture, and anyone's personal decision about those is up to them, and not even scholars have more to base their own decisions on. Jps, you are stating arguments and making claims about their strength, but they are based upon your own beliefs as an article of faith. No one is saying you must give up your faith in them, but they are just as much a faith as are the views of those who accept the Biblical account as true. I don't see that there is anything to hate about not "knowing" via "facts" (which are seldom really facts), nor in being left with insufficient "evidence" or confirmation or support. That is a part of life. Sometimes you must make decisions on incomplete evidence, or none at all. But it is time to stop insisting that there must be some single human POV that will carry the day. It is my faith that God reveals Himself to those who love or seek Him, and to those who do not, He remains a stranger. The Bible is very important, but it is not the sole source of personal evidence for anything, and it is a given that there will be different POVs among people, even scholars. This is of the essence in the Christian religion, and it must be respected when trying to deal with religious matters in a neutral way. Let's have less editorial discounting of source material. Evensteven (talk) 23:02, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

While it is interesting that you claim your faith influences your editing, I don't have a faith, so no faith influences mine. In any case, we cannot treat a claim in the Bible differently than any other source. Just because it is found in the Bible does not mean it is protected from questioning and this particular claim is dubious for a variety of reasons outlined by reliable sources. There is no need to take a "categorical stand" on the historicity of the account, but if we do not, we should not be categorizing the article with other events that actually happened. The fact that there are different POVs is interesting, but the fact that not a single person who is not a religious believer in the Book of Matthew finds the historicity claim plausible is telling from a WP:FRIND standpoint. The claim that this is an equal balance between yes and no is false equivalence. The general consensus is that Matthew was probably embellishing the account to fit a larger point. He's kinda famous for pulling this sort of stunt as is the case for his notorious anti-Semiticism. In fact, attributing the massacre of the innocents to the legitimate King of Judea is easily seen as part of his overall vilification of Jewish non-Christians! jps (talk) 23:08, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
Your point of view is noted. Your faith in it is clear. And I accept that as your personal opinion. But you are arguing against the Biblical account from the basis of your opinion, and that I do not accept as valid for WP. Your calling Christianity itself a fringe POV doesn't make it so, neither do your claims of anti-Semitism. And you have presented no evidence for any type of "balance" of views. Furthermore, I have not claimed to treat the Bible with favor except in my own view, nor have I made a claim that it is protected - rather the contrary. I have taken no categorical stands about the historicity of the account, except as regards my personal view. All these things constitute evidence of WP:IDHT, inasmuch as I have made clear what is my opinion and what is not. Your faith informs your view.
What you don't seem to grasp is that I am not necessarily in favor of retaining this article's connection with the categories in question. But my reason for this is also based on my personal opinion. As I said before, the definition of what constitutes a massacre is subject to arguments for which there is no clear or authoritative answer, and I'm not so sure I would use that exact word even assuming the Biblical account to be true. But I'm not sure I wouldn't either. It would depend on what is meant by "massacre". But my real point here is that the result of my decision would be a personal opinion, and that is not justification per WP standard. Furthermore, the category itself is problematic, because it is also subject to so much personal interpretation. And while WP falls back on the opinions of reliable sources rather than those of its editors, those opinions are also matters of personal interpretation more than professional. This points back to a greater difficulty with the category itself, for named as it is, it becomes subject to personal interpretations about which there are bound to be conflicting opinions, largely irreconcilable. This article makes it clear that the Biblical account cannot be resolved on an evidentiary basis alone. Only a faith of acceptance or a faith of rejection provides a point of stability. I am sorry if this troubles you wrt dealing with its handling on WP, but it's WP's problem to make neutral presentation of things the way they actually are, not as one person sees them or another wishes them to be. Evensteven (talk) 03:00, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
You shouldn't tell people they have faith when they tell you they don't. It's okay that you profess a faith, but I profess none. The fact is that we're on the same page when it comes to the categories in question, so there's not much sense in pursuing this conversation. Just know that if you continue to insist that people have faith when they tell you they don't, this will not necessarily bode well in future Wikipedia interactions. jps (talk) 03:11, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Fair enough. Call it opinion then, or personal conviction. It's often much the same thing. And everyone has their reasons and arguments to back them up. But faith can sometimes constitute more than those things. Do you have faith in your friends? But if you wish to continue, that discussion belongs on our own talk pages. Evensteven (talk) 03:33, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Faith is belief without evidence. I don't indulge in such flights of fancy. We make editorial opinions known on Wikipedia as a result of very well-defined evidence outlined by WP:V, WP:RS, and so forth. That's the sole way I make my judgments as to what should show up on this overly popular website. I believe that most other users agree to this standard. jps (talk) 04:03, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
It is easy to disclaim something you fail to understand, or redefine it until it loses meaning. That's alright though. Elizium23 (talk) 04:40, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
I understand faith fine and note that neither you nor Evensteven below discounts its definition. jps (talk) 11:35, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
I believe Elizium23 was referring specifically to religious faith, and I agree with him that you do not understand that. Evensteven (talk) 21:31, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
I have studied religious faith in depth. That's good enough for Wikipedia writing. jps (talk) 11:29, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
I can only stand in awe of one who has managed to complete such a study. That is far beyond my poor reach. Evensteven (talk) 18:05, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
Faith sometimes begins (or is given initially) without evidence, but it does not continue without it. How long could one sustain faith in a friend without seeing some confirmation? And yet what you know or understand or believe within you may not be so easily stated, and even less easily transmitted convincingly to another. To another, it still looks like faith without evidence. Evensteven (talk) 06:02, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Of course faith needs to be sustained without evidence. You walk by faith and not by sight. Thomas is criticized for desiring confirmation because believers like yourself who come after him will get none of that. That's the point. That I have failed to convince you that you believe in something without evidence is not all that surprising to me. I am an educator and it takes quite a lot of work to convince someone to let down their filters. That's fine — it's not the point of this conversation or our interactions in Wikipedia to convince anyone of what evidence shows. We merely have to write encyclopedia articles. jps (talk) 11:35, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Again you misunderstand religious faith. But take a human example. Imagine you are temporarily blinded. A friend offers to guide your way, and you accept, on faith. Do you have evidence you are being led correctly or incorrectly (assuming you have no clues from other senses)? So, you walk by faith without evidence. But on the other hand, you have the evidence of your friend's prior trustworthiness, and is that not evidence? Thomas was criticized for not trusting enough from past experience to be willing to be led further. In writing encyclopedia articles, it is necessary to know what we are writing about. Evensteven (talk) 21:41, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Why not ask a person who is blind whether that's how they approach the world. I have people in my family who have gone blind and, believe me, they would not equate it with religious faith. I was always fascinated by how Christian rhetoric treats blindness as an analog. Clearly none of the Early Christian writers were ever blind and most seemed to have a disdain for the condition so much so that it lasts as a prejudice in today's Christian apologetics. jps (talk) 11:32, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
I have counted blind people among my friends. And perhaps you missed that I was using an analogy. Or that others on WP may have direct experience with the same things as you, and yet do not share your opinions. Evensteven (talk) 18:05, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
In addition, where there is no very well-defined evidence, WP:V may not exist, and WP:RS (at least normally RS) may not be able to give a firm guidance, or even (at times) a clue. Sometimes there are no hard and fast answers. Evensteven (talk) 06:25, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
He professes faith in WP:V and WP:RS, but if he followed what he believed then he would not need to be corrected 5 times by 3 editors in the space of 8 hours on 1 article for violations of those same policies. Instead, he has put put his faith in a particular brand of skepticism and is crafting the article after that image in his mind. This is contrary to not only the previously-mentioned policies but WP:NPOV as well. Being that two pillars of Wikipedia are being attacked I cannot see this having a good outcome. Elizium23 (talk) 07:00, 15 July 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Again, I have professed "faith" in nothing. WP:V and WP:RS exist. I have applied them correctly and I note that there is a contingent of people who seem to think there is a bigger WP:ADVOCACY going on here including yourself. jps (talk) 11:30, 15 July 2014 (UTC)

You may profess that, but you have simply redefined faith to suit your own worldview; a position that in itself requires "faith" and uses "filters". But back to the original discussion: I would have though that a general category simply called massacres could in any case be used for all types of massacre: proven or unproven. If one wanted to be more specific, surely one would have to qualify the category name. But then we're opening up a can of worms because we'd have to debate the evidence for each article. Easier to leave it as it is. Bermicourt (talk) 16:07, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Can y'all please stop misusing the word 'faith' and not use it as a proxy for an argument about atheism? If you really want to argue that atheism involves faith go edit that article and make it say that. I don't believe that this 'massacre' took place any more than I believe that the dead were resurrected. But my main concern in this section is - what's it about? Are we arguing the category here? If so, I've argued in the past that categories are navigational aids and do not define a subject, so I'm not terribly bothered about it being used here. I would be bothered if the article itself assumed that there was actually a massacre. If we had a "mythological massacres" category that would also be ok - having them both I mean. Dougweller (talk) 16:56, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Alice's Restaurant Massacree, etc. If we start allowing massacres that didn't happen to be so categorized, where do we draw the line? jps (talk) 16:59, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
I think that Bermicourt is saying that we do not and should not draw a line. And I agree. But Dougweller, no one is misusing the word "faith". I think that jps is simply rejecting certain applications of it. I see no necessity for restricting its usage to religious faith only, but I think jps wishes to avoid implications of religious belief in his statements, so we sometimes get a dissonance of expression, but not necessarily a conflict of view. And "mythological massacres" will never do because the event is neither mythological (in any case) nor is it proven false. "Mythological" is not equivalent to "false", although it is often misused as though it were. Jps, "massacres that didn't happen" is a statement of your claim that it has been proven false, and scholars do not say so. They say there is a question that cannot be resolved on the basis of available information. Evensteven (talk) 17:34, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Basically I agree with Doug. If we accept the Bible as historically accurate, lots of other books will require equal treatment. I'm not at all sure I think it highly unlikely because we have too little clearly reliable information to make reasonable probability judgments. But I do have to agree without better evidence than we have it would be going too far to declare it historical. I also might prefer a "legendary" category to a "mythological" one. John Carter (talk) 19:15, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Possibly, but theologians, or at least some, accept the idea of religious mythology but legend? And EvenSteven, I know mythology doesn't mean false, but I have seen this story called mythological. Eg Michael Grant:"“The tale is not history but myth or folk-lore” "a myth allegedly fulfilling a prophecy by Jeremiah and mirroring history’s judgment of the great but evil potentate Herod, arising from many savage acts during the last years before his death in 4 BC" or (at random) here (note that the person seeing it as mythological prefers it that way from a Christian pov[16] as he thinks if it were real it makes God seem like a monster). So we can call it mythological without being anti-Christian. Dougweller (talk) 20:46, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
You're right insofar as a story from an overtly religious text probably is better called myth than legend. Legend would probably be for King Arthur's similar purported killings and other stories of a less overtly religious nature.John Carter (talk) 21:10, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
[edit conflict]: I cannot agree. Mythology is not intended to describe history in the sort of detail and precision that we ascribe to that term today, nor is it the intention of this passage of Matthew. Legend is indeed something like the story of King Arthur, very likely (in my opinion) arising from some historical events, but accruing elaborations, additions, alterations, and interpretations over time, which in the end obscure or may make entirely opaque the underlying original history. That doesn't fit this account either. As you both know, Christians themselves are divided over how to interpret the Bible in general, and this passage is subject to such divisions. The label "myth" cannot be used generally, first of all, because if applied in its true sense, it would be a POV among Christians, and secondly, because it is easily misconstrued as to its meaning, potentially implying "false". Legend is not accurate. I think these labels represent interpretations, and do more to confuse and cause controversy than they serve to enlighten as to content. Let the article convey what POVs exist, neutrally and naturally, without introducing elements that tend to obfuscate. If you use "myth", then you must explain myth, and that is not the article's subject. Evensteven (talk) 21:29, 15 July 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────It is highly likely that it didn't happen as Matthew is not a reliable source for whether anything occurred beyond the points that are agreed to by all scholars (c.f. the discussion above). We know that every other massacre listed in Category:Massacres occurred. That this is the unique event for which we do not know that is a problem. jps (talk) 17:43, 15 July 2014 (UTC)

My statement stands, and this discussion has come round full circle. Evensteven (talk) 17:55, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
So let me understand this, jps. You are an educator and you are saying that any points in any historical document that are not agreed by "all scholars" are "unreliable"? On that basis, most of accepted history would have to go down the pan. Bermicourt (talk) 18:35, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
There are strong reasons to question whether the Book of Matthew is reliable. It is the same reason we question whether the Qu'ran or the Book of Mormon is unreliable. It is not to say that it is impossible that some of what is reported in Matthew actually happened, only that it is highly likely that it was embellished and the miraculous accounts are do not pass the basic historicity tests one would use elsewhere since the goal of religious texts is to convince believers and converts of the veracity of the claims of the religion rather than write down a true and accurate account. jps (talk) 18:50, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
It is bad scholarship to draw conclusions on the veracity of a text by comparing it with other texts from totally different periods and cultures. It is also tenuous to suggest that writers of a document that was later accepted into a religious canon have any more of an agenda than any other historical writers (or indeed writers today). The massacre of the innocents was entirely possible and there is no particular reason to suppose that it was invented as it adds nothing substantive to the Christian faith. It simply makes Herod look a bad guy, which I think we know anyway from other independent sources. I think the real issue here is that you have no faith yourself (as you have said), you further seem to believe that religious belief is "magic" and "mythical". Others will disagree, but fine, we're all entitled to our POV. However, you are extending that worldview to set different standards of historicity for religious texts than for other texts simply on the basis that they're religious. That seems both unreasonable and unscholarly. Bermicourt (talk) 19:16, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
On the contrary, it adds a lot to the story. The Gospel of Matthew is couched as prophesy fulfillment, and the author clearly wanted to attach the death-cult to the Nativity Story as well as invent an excuse to get the characters to Egypt (unlike the Lucan writer). The Massacre of the Innocents sets up the Flight to Egypt which was necessary to parallel the relevant Jewish scriptures. jps (talk) 21:35, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
"However, you are extending that worldview to set different standards of historicity for religious texts than for other texts simply on the basis that they're religious." You'll find that the same standards are used. Look at Pythagoras. Much of what is reported about him is dismissed as fanciful. This is rational, unless you think Apollo really was Pythagoras' father. Second Quantization (talk) 15:54, 17 July 2014 (UTC)
Jps, re "the goal of religious texts is to convince believers and converts of the veracity of the claims of the religion rather than write down a true and accurate account". This statement does not itself pass the test of scholarship that you have been advocating, and indeed is both unfounded and untrue. And as a matter of personal testimony, even if it were true that religious texts had such a goal, they never would have convinced me of their truth, nor in fact did they do so. The source of my own belief lies quite elsewhere, and it has been my observation (through their own professions) that this is also true of the vast majority of my Christian acquaintance. The Bible expresses truth, but it does not attempt to convince. Let others say otherwise if they wish, you, and perhaps some Christians, but that is opinion, and it does not hold for a very substantial number of peoples, believing and unbelieving. Evensteven (talk) 20:35, 15 July 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Even though your belief is based on other things, that has been established as the goal of the writers of much of the New Testament. I can't think of a single scholar who would say otherwise. Can you? jps (talk) 21:35, 15 July 2014 (UTC)

Established? Not likely. Evensteven (talk) 21:52, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
I haven't seen a single commentary that disputes this. jps (talk) 11:34, 16 July 2014 (UTC)

At the start of this section, jps asked about references for New Testament scholarship. I suggest Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament as a widely-accepted and respected work. I have access to this commentary and could make use of it in the article discussed. – Fayenatic London 21:40, 15 July 2014 (UTC)

jps, you seem to be projecting onto Matthew your own approach which is to interpret events in a given way in order to reach the conclusion you want: that Matthew must be unreliable as a source. However, that is not really a discussion for this page nor was it the original issue i.e. categorization as a massacre. That question is easily resolved. Category:Massacres ought to cover all massacres whether historically verified or not. Despite the bold statement by someone else above that "all the other events in the category are confirmed to have happened" a quick random sample suggests that is far from the case. The pillage of Ein Gedi is only attested by one source; the Rufus River Massacre is questioned as a massacre by one of its sources and appears to refer to simply the aboriginal casualties of a battle the aborigines initiated; and the massacre associated with the Capture of the Brillante was a "widely circulated story" but has "no official documentation". So even if we created a category "Massacres that actually happened" (and it needs to be a sub-category of "Massacres") we are immediately in difficulty as we will have to assess a mass of articles many of which would appear to lack the level of independent, reliable sources you are demanding for Matthew. And by extension we should do the same for all historical articles on Wikipedia. We are then into a real minefield. Of course you are free to propose that, but again this is not the right place. Bermicourt (talk) 07:15, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
There are no sources which dispute any of those massacres as actual events. Conversely we have many, if not most, sources which cast doubt on whether the Massacre of the Innocents occurred. jps (talk) 11:28, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
Not true, check them out. But thank you for demonstrating my point. The fact that even 2 editors can't agree whether they should be in or out, suggests that it will be a hopeless task for Wikipedia's editors to agree the hundreds of articles in the category by some inevitably arbitrary standard. In fact, we are very unlikely to get agreement even on the standard. So let Category:Massacres cover all massacres whatever their status and let's move on to more useful work. Bermicourt (talk) 11:49, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
Fine with me. I'll be adding Texas Chainsaw Massacre forthwith. jps (talk) 14:06, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
If you can demonstrate through independent reliable sourcees that subject has significant support for actually happening that might be acceptable. Otherwise, doing so would qualify under WP:POINT and/or some other guideline and quite possibly reported as such. If that were to happen, the possibly soapboxing nature of this subthread might well also be mentioned. I cannot believe the minimal or nonexistenttrue benefit to the encyclopediawould be worth the potential consequences. John Carter (talk) 15:37, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
Except for you and I, John, people in this thread seem to be saying whether or not the massacre occurred is irrelevant to an article being categorized. I hear your complaint, but I don't think it right that the only event that has a dubious likelihood of occurrence to be included in the category is this one. There is a lot of literature which illustrates that the film I propose to add has informed discourse on violence and massacres. I think it better suited to a different category, but who am I to argue with consensus? This isn't about disruption, this is about consistency, in my mind. Why should we placate Christian sensibilities but not the sensibilities of humanists who find the horror genre to be informative and liminal for the discussion of violent actions (especially massacres) in real life? jps (talk) 15:49, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
If the MotI is included, I myself would probably add if it exists an article on the very dubious similar "massacre" attributed to King Arthur who was presumably Riothemus. And I'm fairly sure that there are multiple other mythological/legendary massacres as well such as the "massacre" of the Trojans (if anyone calls it that) or any other mythological or prehistorical/ahistorical ones I can find. Personally I think @Dougweller:'s position above is the most reasonable approach and would ask for his opinion on adding the TCM, and if he suggests expansion I could I suppose add the Mutant Massacre and any others out there to the category as well. Actually, now that I think about it, the number of genocidal massacres in SF and fantasy of all kinds is kinda huge. John Carter (talk) 16:24, 16 July 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────The world is not a cut-and-dried place, people. It does not shift itself according to the preferences of individuals. If it is consistency you're looking for, fiction will disappoint you as thoroughly as history. I suggest mathematics. But even there, you must begin with assumptions. They are called axioms or postulates. Choices and decisions are everywhere. Evensteven (talk) 17:33, 16 July 2014 (UTC)

  • I skipped most of the above.
"Faith sometimes begins (or is given initially) without evidence, but it does not continue without it." Start with an unjustified belief, then use confirmation bias to pick up things as evidence. It is human nature.
"Do you have faith in your friends?" You've confused faith, belief without evidence, with the colloquial use of faith in the sense of trust. Trust is not synonymous with belief without evidence. Trusting your friends is not the same as faith; faith is positing a specific ontological outlook without evidence or reason. Trusting someone is positing an actor will act in a specific way (generally based on assessing prior plausibility). Why are you talking about faith on a wikipedia page?
"What the writers of the Bible were up to when they wrote is a matter of faith or conjecture, and anyone's personal decision about those is up to them, and not even scholars have more to base their own decisions on" Since we don't know who wrote the things, anything is possible. But we can reach reasonable conclusions, particularly when historical fictions are invented for narrative purposes.
Now, to bring things back down to reality:
"In addition, where there is no very well-defined evidence, WP:V may not exist, and WP:RS (at least normally RS) may not be able to give a firm guidance, or even (at times) a clue." This is a purely speculative comment and incongruent with policy. Wikipedia does not care what primary sources exist. It cares about what secondary sources exist, and what they say. If no evidence exists about what happened, but most of the reliable sources (the academic history sources in this case) think X happened because Y, we say X happened or that "Historians think that X happened because Y"
"jps, you seem to be projecting onto Matthew your own approach which is to interpret events in a given way in order to reach the conclusion you want: that Matthew must be unreliable as a source." As far as Wikipedia is concerned, ancient sources are unreliable, that is why we defer to secondary sources, It is what the secondary sources (RS means non-apologist sources, wikipedia uses the sources of the academic study of history) say about Matthew that matters.
Fayenatic, your book you show is written by two evangelical theologians and printed by an evangelical book publisher. Unreliable. Second Quantization (talk) 15:54, 17 July 2014 (UTC)
We can't eliminate reliable sources just because they're "evangelical." -- (talk) 23:27, 17 July 2014 (UTC)
Evangelical and christian apologist sources are not known for their coverage of history. Sources by historians in the standard history literature are. Second Quantization (talk) 08:22, 18 July 2014 (UTC)
True, we cannot silence evangelical apologetics, but it pertains to theology, not history. If it is notable, it should be rendered, but theology does not aim to establish objective facts, it just aims to establish correct belief for a certain church. Tgeorgescu (talk) 11:46, 18 July 2014 (UTC)
To give one example, Bart Ehrman said about How God Became Jesus something like that: if you want to know what is theologically wrong with How Jesus Became God it does an excellent job, but it sets forth no historical hypothesis/explanation which would be an alternative to my explanation. So, it opposes it for theological reasons, not for historical reasons. Tgeorgescu (talk) 12:09, 18 July 2014 (UTC)
Well that's an interesting approach: eliminate all those who might have a different view by labeling them unreliable!
This debate which initially proposed that a general Wikipedia category ("massacres") should only include historically verified events, has drifted into a general argument about faith (maybe that was the intent). The latter is always going to produce stalemate. The former is solvable if one leaves faith out. It's about whether we want general categories to be limited in some way by article historicity. My feeling is no otherwise we will have a serious headache with hundreds of categories and thousands of articles needed to be tested for "historicity" which different editors will no doubt define differently. That is a major change, not just to "massacres" but to many other categories. Of course, sub-categories can be more tightly defined, but to do so for general categories seems illogical. So let's revert the article in question to the status quo ante and raise real "general category v. article historicity" issue, at the categories talk page. Of course, if the underlying issue is simply to undermine religious articles generally then why not be honest and say that? It might save some time. Bermicourt (talk) 16:02, 18 July 2014 (UTC)
"Well that's an interesting approach: eliminate all those who might have a different view by labeling them unreliable! " Well don't use clearly unreliable sources. The source is a joke. Pulling out apologetics to answer history questions doesn't fly on wikipedia. Further, removing clearly dubious events in one particular instance is an easy job. Including bogus events in a category about massacres is self evidently a bad idea. In Category:Murders there is a separate category for fiction because self evidently its stupid to mix in real murders with fake ones since it makes the category near useless otherwise. If you want a sub category for fiction, make it. Second Quantization (talk) 22:05, 18 July 2014 (UTC)
Agree with Bermicourt on all points. In addition, there has been a considerable amount of refusal to engage in discussion, and a lot of simple insistence on POV, looking a lot like WP:IDHT. I don't much mind it when editors disagree with me, but I do take exception to being misrepresented so often in the many replies, even after multiple corrections, and simply make note of this here. This type of aggression does not improve understanding or accommodate constructive action, and it would be unproductive to go back and forth forever. I stand by what I have said, and I think there is general recognition of POV, and perhaps of POVPUSH. Evensteven (talk) 21:00, 18 July 2014 (UTC)
Several times sources have been requested, instead what has been seen is discussions about what faith is and evangelical theology books. That someone thinks an evangelical source is useful for an academic discussion of history is an embarrassment. Who do you expect to take apologetics seriously when it pertains to questions about historical matters? When Muslim scholars talk about a flying donkey-thing do you factor that into your reliable sources? No, clearly not, because that would be utterly insane. Leave Apologetics for the theology, and leave history sources for the history. Wikipedia isn't written along the fundamentalist/literalist view, that's for conservapedia. Where literalism is mentioned its clearly marked as such. Second Quantization (talk) 21:57, 18 July 2014 (UTC)
I'm with Bernicourt - although I think this one is fictional and probably inspired by the Moses story, I'm happy to have all massacres, fictional and historical, in the category. Dougweller (talk) 09:38, 19 July 2014 (UTC)
In other categories the issues is solved with a "Biblical foo" sub-category to which people can apply their prejudices as they like. In fact there ought to be scope for Category:Biblical massacres given the imprecision which seems to pervade the whole tree. There is a case for sweeping away the whole lot. Johnbod (talk) 13:06, 19 July 2014 (UTC)
That's a reasonable approach. I got the ball rolling. jps (talk) 14:29, 19 July 2014 (UTC)

Emerging theories of an historical Jesus

There are a number of writers who are now saying that Jesus was from a different era and that he was a leader of the Jewish Revolt. Specifically, Ralph Ellis writes that Jesus was actually Jesus of Gamala or Izates Manu Monobasus who, he says, are the same person. Joe Atwill says that Eleazar was the real Jesus. I understand this to be a reference to Rabbi Eleazar ben Azariah who taught a version of Judaism in the mid to late first century which was similar to Christianity. Both Atwill and Ellis say that the NT is a Roman work which consolidated their victory in the Jewish Revolt to the losers, the Greco-Egyptian Edessans whose leader, Izates, Ellis says was crucified but was taken down from the cross by Josephus Flavian, an event which Josephus recounts in his War of the Jews. I think this is significant in that it accords with other Christian traditions over the years such as Arian Christianity and Adoptionism as well as the Muslim view of Jesus that he was a real person and not "begat" by God. Richard Dawkins supported Atwill's 2013 conference publicizing his book "Caesar's Messiah" and this has resulted in an explosion of interest in the theory and some heated debate between Atwill and Richard Carrier, and others. This shift is not being reflected anywhere on any Wiki page discussing Christianity, Jesus, the historical Jesus or the Quest for the Historical Jesus. I consider this important and significant because it is supported by a scientifically based probability theory, in Atwill's case, and by years of exhaustive research of extra-Christian history, by Ralph Ellis. There are numerous debates about it on the internet, which is becoming the main forum for these types of debates and is involving high profile figures like Richard Dawkins and Richard Carrier. I also see it as important from a moral/philosophical perspective because it proposes a reading of the New Testament from a secularist or "deist" perspective, and allows one to focus on the moral basis of the New Testament rather than its miraculous, supernatural aspects. In my view there should be a discussion of these new theories on one of the main pages relating to Christianity or the historicity of Jesus.Burdenedwithtruth (talk) 06:14, 20 July 2014 (UTC)

I refer you to WP:FRINGE and for Ellis in particular (not sure about Atwill) WP:SPS. Dougweller (talk) 15:35, 21 July 2014 (UTC)
What's new about deism? Thomas Jefferson was a well-known deist well over two centuries ago, rejecting miracles so far as to physically cut references of them out of his Bible. And deism is a far cry from Arianism, not only philosophically but historically. Very likely FRINGE indeed, but even if not, certainly incoherent and uninformed ramblings. "Emerging theory"? Reminds me of marketing ploys masquerading unproven, perhaps untenable "research" as "emerging science". Evensteven (talk) 19:37, 21 July 2014 (UTC) which has been blacklisted here covers and has covered regularly in a rather obviously non-neutral way a "new" deism. There are a few clearly SPS's relating to the topic as well. Though they don't use the full phrase it seems to closely resemble moralistic therapeutic deism. However, at this point, despite's several years of regular columns about it, I have yet to see any independent reliable coverage of its internet churches or of the movement itself except in discussion of MTD, and never as simply "deism" without the "moralistic therapeutic" modifiers. John Carter (talk) 20:09, 21 July 2014 (UTC)
Interesting. Yet every quack has a new twist to give his therapies plausibility. Evensteven (talk) 23:08, 21 July 2014 (UTC)

Userspace drafts

The pages at User:Ret.Prof/Celsus, User:Ret.Prof/Jesus in the Talmud, and User:Ret.Prof/Josephus on Jesus have been prepared in userspace for possible transfer to mainspace. Although as userspace drafts it might not be possible to directly edit them, comments on the relevant talk pages, including any possible concernsabout such potential moves, are certainly permissiable. John Carter (talk) 15:30, 18 July 2014 (UTC)

Oh not again. We already have pages on these subjects, as we already had pages before. How many times do we have to ask this editor to stop seeding his own POV essays into the encyclopedia as duplicate articles? In ictu oculi (talk) 16:58, 18 July 2014 (UTC)
I agree that there are valid concerns here, including perhaps misrepresentation of sources. But there may well be some useful accurately-presented material which could be used to improve the articles. Also, he seems to be proposing replacing the current articles with these drafts so input on whether that should be done would likely be useful. John Carter (talk) 17:23, 19 July 2014 (UTC)

Imo, the three draft articles should have their pages temporarily blanked by an admin, as the editor has indicated he is on an extended break. It wouldn't be a problem if they were isolated bits of content; however, these complete articles could easily be misconstrued as duplicate content forks, per WP:FORK. The editor can always restore them when he is ready to work on them again. Ignocrates (talk) 21:41, 25 July 2014 (UTC)

One of your project's articles has been featured

Today's Article For Improvement star.svg

Please note that Vatican Library, which is within this project's scope, has been selected as one of Today's articles for improvement. The article was scheduled to appear on Wikipedia's Community portal in the "Today's articles for improvement" section for one week, beginning today. Everyone is encouraged to collaborate to improve the article. Thanks, and happy editing!
Delivered by Theo's Little Bot at 01:00, 28 July 2014 (UTC) on behalf of the TAFI team

Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/Religious Thought of Edmund Burke

Dear editors: This old AfC submission will soon be deleted as a stale draft. Is this a notable topic, and should it be kept and improved instead? —Anne Delong (talk) 21:16, 30 July 2014 (UTC)

Comments, advice, and assistance requested at Magdalene asylum

It has been brought to my attention, that there is currently an ongoing debate on the Magdalene asylum article. This debate is occurring with User:Signedzzz and revolves around the neutrality of the article as a whole, but primarily with the section Magdalene asylum#Catholic perspective and there appears to be no immediate solution. I am appealing to see if there are people with better knowledge within the project to comment on the situation and possibly provide a solution. I have discussed the issue on the talk page, but to no avail. Here is a discussion about prior concerns being raised about the issue, you can also see my own contribution here. I am further concerned by the tone and nature of Signedzzz's edit's and am looking for guidance. Please provide some assistance on this issue. Jab843 (talk) 02:38, 11 August 2014 (UTC)

Book of Isaiah era consensus

Hello, A discussion is taking place for era-style consensus for article Book of Isaiah so see the article's talk page. Era-style is inconsistent, and ignore the recent era changes done in the article because there was no consensus approved yet. -- JudeccaXIII (talk) 03:01, 14 August 2014 (UTC)

Ezra–Nehemiah era consensus

Hello, A discussion is taking place for era-style consensus for article Ezra–Nehemiah so see the article's talk page. The era-style is inconsistent. -- JudeccaXIII (talk) 23:42, 16 August 2014 (UTC)

List of Church of England dioceses

I have nominated List of Church of England dioceses to go up on the main page, and some concerns have been raised here, specifically with respect to sourcing. Any help you are able to provide in finding additional sourcing for the information in the list would be greatly appreciated. Neelix (talk) 02:50, 17 August 2014 (UTC)

Iglesia ni Cristo

The article Iglesia ni Cristo has been nominated for Good Article review. Elizium23 (talk) 03:21, 18 August 2014 (UTC)

Move discussion on Talk:Judas

--Redtigerxyz Talk 14:15, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

Historicity of Jesus

Additional eyes would be very welcome on the above article and its talk page. John Carter (talk) 23:31, 21 August 2014 (UTC)

Persecution of Christians article

Stephen2512 (talk · contribs)'s edits to the Sexual repression, Sexual revolution and Sexual abstinence articles popped up on my WP:Watchlist. I don't think that Stephen2512 is new to editing Wikipedia, but that is beside the point at the moment. I decided to look at his contribution history and saw this edit he made to the Persecution of Christians article. It concerns the claims that "Of the world's three largest religions Christians are the most proportionally persecuted with 80% of all acts of religious discrimination being directed at Christians" and "who only make up 33% of the world's population." I think these claims need looking into. Flyer22 (talk) 18:01, 28 August 2014 (UTC)

Hi, I am the one who made those claims and they are both cited appropriately. I use the same citation for "who only make up 33% of the world's population." as has already been used as the number 1 reference on List of religious populations Wiki page. The "80% of all acts of religious discrimination being directed at Christians" is also properly cited. The only discrepancy from my post would be "Of the world's three largest religions Christians are the most proportionally persecuted". I am not taking liberty in making this statement it is necessarily a mathematical certainty based on my two citations alone. Please see below:


Persecution rate = Percent persecuted of group / Population of group

Percent Persecuted:

  • Christians: 80% or .8
  • Other: 20% or .2


  • Christianity - 2,100,000,000
  • Islam - 1,600,000,000
  • Hindu - 1,000,000,000

Persecution Rate:

  • Christianity = .8 / 2,100,000,000 = 3.81 * 10^-10
  • Islam = .2 / 1,600,000,000 = 1.25 * 10^-10
  • Hindu = .2 / 1,000,000,000 = 2.00 * 10^-10
  • Buddhist = .2 / 376,000,000 = 5.32 * 10^-10

As you can see, no matter if 1 person is persecuted or if a million people are persecuted, if Christianity receives 80% of the persecutions then Christians will necessarily have a higher persecution rate and will be proportionally more persecuted than people of the Islamic faith and Hindu faith. This is not the case for Buddhists. Because there are fewer Buddhists, if the remaining 20% of persecutions was assumed to occur only to Buddhists then they would overtake Christianity as the most persecuted religion. I stated though, that Christianity is the most persecuted of the world's top three most populous religions. This statement is necessarily true based on my 2 sources alone and independent of how many people are persecuted. This statement is necessarily true.

Stephen2512 (talk) 19:34, 28 August 2014 (UTC)

Stephen2512 (talk · contribs), you removed one source/different text and replaced it with two different sources and new text. So my concerns are the following: What do other WP:Reliable sources state on this matter? Is the news source you used the best source for this material? I also questioned as a WP:Reliable source, but, looking at its Wikipedia article, it seems fine, and I've seen it used in other religious Wikipedia articles.
That stated, since no one else watching this WikiProject page has yet weighed in on this matter, I suppose your edits to the Persecution of Christians article are fine. Flyer22 (talk) 05:45, 29 August 2014 (UTC)
Keep this part of the WP:Verifiability policy in mind: "When reliable sources disagree, present what the various sources say, give each side its due weight, and maintain a neutral point of view." Clearly, by your removal of that one source/previous text, sources state differently on the matter you changed. Since I am not well versed in religion, I simply don't know which aspect should be given the most WP:Due weight. Flyer22 (talk) 05:51, 29 August 2014 (UTC)
This looks very shaky. They're listed as a website called and article and from The Independent. In fact The Independent isn't the real source, but another organisation quoted by The Independent called International Society for Human Rights. That aside, the figures are arrived at by the OP, and are not found in either source - so the edit is synthesis and OR. Even aside from that, International Society for Human Rights doesn't look at all reliable - it looks like one of those right-wing fronts the Americans were setting up all over the place in the 70s to attack the Soviets, and now apparently going its own way with a more Christian but still right-wing agenda. PiCo (talk) 07:55, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
The Independent is a reliable source and it's perfectly acceptable to use a secondary source, in fact it's preferable. The fact that the Independent used the stat gives it credence. Your claim about the International Society for Human Rights, on the other hand, is going to need evidence. I do agree that any synthesis should be removed, but the 80% figure should stay.--JFH (talk) 13:47, 4 September 2014 (UTC)

john macarthur & spiritual gifts

among the gifts he believes were rescinded in abt. 100 ad cleverly he doesnt mention healing for this would cause a riot of protest from people who have been healed spiritually. also it would make god look uncaring for sufferers. this interpretation of the bible is gloomy & i believe is dying out — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:30, 29 August 2014 (UTC)

Easter article

Please see the discussions here and here on the article talk page regarding the desire to see secular and "syncretic" topics covered. Evensteven (talk) 18:58, 1 September 2014 (UTC)

New reference added to the Gospel of Matthew

I took the liberty of adding a new reference to the Gospel of Matthew: Maurice Casey, Jesus: Evidence and Argument or Mythicist Myths?, A&C Black, 2014. I hope it will be edifying. He is a leading non-Christian historian who in a scholarly fashion examines the evidence regarding the origins the Gospel of Matthew. He concludes that Papias was right: Matthew did write a Gospel in Hebrew. However this early gospel was smaller and more primitive than the Gospel of Matthew we have today and there were major discrepancies between the two. It may have even been composed on wax tablets. His in-depth the study into "composite scholarship" of the Second Temple period has given the academic community much to reflect upon. He puts forward a compelling case that Matthew first composed a gospel in Aramaic and that this became the basis or fountainhead for the composite Gospel of Matthew. Before I start updating the article with material from Casey 2014, I will give others a chance to look at this new work as a sign of good faith. Cheers - Ret.Prof (talk) 12:25, 3 September 2014 (UTC)

East-West Schism article proposed name change

Please see the discussion here. RFC. Evensteven (talk) 23:11, 6 September 2014 (UTC)

I think this discussion would be better carried out under a requested move. Great Schism was originally a broad concept article that then became a disambiguation page in 2004 when the East–West Schism article was created. So there has never been a move discussion before. StAnselm (talk) 23:57, 6 September 2014 (UTC)


It is claimed that the theology of subordination was first introduced by Arius fourth century. Patristic evidence suggest that this statement is incorrect. It is excepted by most apologist that Tertullian ( 180 AD ) the so named father of the Trinity ,was indeed a subordinate. Tertullian trinity was different to todays revamped version formulated by Athanasius. The trinity was articulated by Tertullian as Christ being a separate unique entity as wisdom personified (Proverbs 8: 22-33- 1 Colossians 1:15 ) hence was externalized / begotten from his fathers bosom as God of God incarnate. Tertullian's subordinate theology suggest that Christ prior to his externalization was a made divine embryo in gestation awaiting to be begotten / sired into Mary's womb.( 1 Peter 1:20 ) Arius was to extract that embryo prior to its time and in effect have Christ born ( spiritually ) prior to his appointed time. This premature birth made Christ a spirit creature Hence as JW's teach "a god" The Arian controversy has changed entirely the original concept that Christ was made and although fully functionary in his fathers omniscience was not yet perceived in our time frame ( last days ) as the logos. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:13, 13 September 2014 (UTC)