NY Times vs. St. Junipero Serra

In its 2015 Annual Report on Anti- Catholicism, the Catholic League for Religious & Civil Rights discusses in detail a front page story in the 9/30/15 issue of the NY Times by reporter Laura Holson who wrote that Fr. Junipero Serra, who was just canonized as a saint last year, had been involved with “torturing Native American Indians”, and that historians agreed with this accusation.

Dr. William Donohue, head of the Catholic League, recently wrote a book about Fr. Serra and could not find a single historian who made such an accusation. So Dr. Donohue wrote to NYT reporter Holson asking her for the names of some of these “historians.” Holson never responded. He then wrote to Gregory Brock, Sr. Editor for Standards at the NY Times and asked him to provide the names of these historians. He replied to Donohue but never provided any names of historians.

We then wrote to both Greg Brock and Laura Holson to see if Dr. Donohue was correct. We asked them to please provide us with the names of historians claiming that Fr. Serra was involved with “torturing Indians.” We received a reply from Mr. Brock, and just as he did with Dr.

Donohue, he refused to provide the names of any such historians.

In our view, the NY Times has a “problem” with some of its writings on matters dealing with Catholicism or Christianity. We would not recommend the NY Times. Instead, we would recommend the Wall Street Journal.

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