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April 19, 2019

New York Times Issues Series of Embarrassing Corrections About Basic Christian Beliefs

Even I know most of this stuff and I only went to Sunday school about three times.

As for the saints-sacraments -- I also guessed that they might be relics or statues.

Based on this French language tweet:

But 1, that's partly because I was translating from the French "saints sacraments" and didn't know if those words had a special meaning when paired (they do -- it's just not on WordReference.com!), and 2, I also said I did not know what this term meant, but was guessing at its meaning, not reporting, authoritatively, what it meant, and 3, I corrected and added the right information in about 20 minutes when two readers told me what it meant.

BTW: I also forgot that "saint" actually means "holy" in French, and just took it to have the meaning we associate it with in English, that is, a person elevated to sainthood.

This bit of forgetting led me down a crooked path of mistranslation.

Mark Hemingway points out the New York Time's very provincial ignorance:

Just in time for Easter, The New York Times has been forced to run yet another correction that speaks to the paper’s profound ignorance regarding the basic beliefs of Christianity.

In a Thursday report on the fire at Notre Dame, The Times highlighted the actions of Father Jean-Marc Fournier, the Paris Fire Department chaplain who exposed himself to certain danger in order to recover the cathedral’s treasured relics.

"I had two priorities: to save the crown of thorns and a statue of Jesus," the Grey Lady quoted him. The story was full of gripping details about the scramble to preserve this statue. "As the chaplain began removing a statue of Jesus, he said, his colleagues were fighting the fire from the cathedral's towers," the paper reported. "With the statue in hand, Father Fournier, alone in the nave, gave a benediction to the cathedral, he said."

There’s one small problem here. There’s no statue of Jesus inside Notre Dame. What Father Fournier was referring to was the Blessed Sacrament, communion bread that, according to Catholic doctrine, contains the real presence of Jesus Christ.

Sure enough, The New York Times later appended this correction to the story: "An earlier version of this article misidentified one of two objects recovered from Notre-Dame by the Rev. Jean-Marc Fournier. It was the Blessed Sacrament, not a statue of Jesus."

They did what I did, I think: They tried to translate the French term used here, "saints sacraments," and they guessed it referred to some kind of relic or statue, as I did, though they added this bizarre specificity that it was definitely a statue and furthermore a statue of that most famous saint, St. Jesus.

Okay, so: Are the New York Times' French translation resources no better than my own?

In fact, they seem worse, because I never had any confidence in my guess. The New York Times reports -- as if it's a verified fact! -- that saints sacraments refers to a statue of Jesus.

By the way: Here's a hint that that couldn't possibly be right:

Saints sacraments."

Does the New York Times not know that the French plural is just like the English plural -- you add an -s, 98% of the time?

And, though some singular words end in -s (as they also sometimes do in English), you can tell that this is indeed a plural because the adjective, sacrament, is also pluralized to agree with the noun?

Seriously? There is no possible way that someone with even the most basic acquaintance with French could think that saints sacraments referred to A statue (singular) of Jesus.

Wait, I mean Saint Jesus.

How could the newspaper possibly confuse these two things? The most logical explanation is that Father Fournier referred to the “body of Christ,” and the reporter took his words literally and not seriously. It doesn’t appear to be a translation error; the reporter who wrote the story, Elian Peltier, appears to be fluent in French and tweets in the language regularly.

Yeah, I'm going to guess "No" on this. To repeat, I myself found a French news source reporting that le couronne d'epines et les saints-sacrements s'ont sauvee', or words to that effect, and I guessed (because the crown of thorns is itself a relic) that the saints-sacraments might be other relics.

I'm going to guess that this idiot saw the same reference and made the same religiously-ignorant guess that I did -- but stated it as a fact, and a correct translation.

Okay, so I don't want to steal everything from Mark Hemingway. So I'll just tell you that if you click the link to see the Times' previous Body of Christ-related corrections, you'll find out that the New York Times thinks that Christians believe that Jesus is buried in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre -- which seems to me to be another wild-assed, Bart-Simpson-Book-Report-style guess based on context.

Also, they think that Easter is the day Christ was resurrected... into Heaven.

And they think the crook'd staff a bishop carries is a "crow's ear," rather than a crosier or crozier.

I mean, it just goes on and on.

Professor Henry Jones Jr. is baffled at the ignorance of the curators of the supposed holy repository of all the facts that need knowing.

Is there a single Christian employed at the New York Times?

If not -- that's awfully strange, isn't it? Perhaps it's time to open an EEOC investigation into this Hate Group.

By the way: Here's the priest the New York Times is quoting-- the chaplain of the French fire brigade who was brought with them into the cathedral to rescue objects of inestimable value.

He does say that his second goal was to save "Jesus," but then follows that with "present en les saints-sacrements" -- taken together, "Jesus, present in the saints-sacrements."

Not "present in a statue."

Also: plural.

And also, not just "Saving Jesus." Saving Jesus, present in the holy hosts.

Here's how another French source put it:

Le père Fournier se fixe deux objectifs : d’abord, « sauver la couronne d’épines et les reliques de la passion », puis « sauver Jésus » en récupérant le Saint-Sacrement, c’est-à-dire les hosties consacrées.

"Father Fournier set himself upon two objectives, first, "saving the crown of thorns and the relics of the Passion," then "saving Jesus," in recovering the Saint-Sacrement, which is to say the consecrated hosts."

Here's the thing: the French word for statue is, get this, "statue," and I find it strange that in no quotation from this guy does he ever mention the word "statue" but repeatedly specifies Jesus as present in the saints-sacrements.

But the New York Times and its Pulitzer winning reporters and editorials just guess that saint-sacraments means "statue."

Bonus: Real Headline from the AP. This is real. This is not The Onion or the Babylon Bee.

Tourist mecca Notre Dame also revered as place of worship


Thanks to Dr. Spank.

digg this
posted by Ace of Spades at 04:14 PM

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