Vatican Misspells Jesus on 6,000 Papal Medals

Thu, 10/24/2013 - 06:00

The Vatican had to withdraw more than 6,000 papal medals due to a spelling mistake.

It was not a minor one: the misspelled word was nothing less than Jesus, which somehow turned into Lesus.

The gold, silver and bronze medallions, made by the Italian State Mint to commemorate the beginning of Pope Francis’ papacy, were put on the market around the beginning of October, before the typo was noticed.

The medals portray Pope Francis and quote a phrase in Latin that profoundly affected him as a teenager, inspiring him to become a priest.

The phrase should have read: “VIDIT ERGO JESUS PUBLICANUM ET QUIA MISERANDO ATQUE ELIGENDO VIDIT, AIT ILLI SEQUERE ME,” but the word Jesus became Lesus.

The medals, 200 in gold, 3,000 in silver and 3,000 in bronze, were quickly recalled after being put on sale at the Vatican Publishing House in St. Peter's Square.

However, four were sold before they could be withdrawn. Experts now predict the value of those four will skyrocket due to their rarity.  

The Twitter world was, of course, quite amused by the news. One user joked, “I blame the Lesuits” (Pope Francis is a Jesuit), while another wrote, “Recalled Vatican medal says Lesus instead of Jesus. Wonder how Mary's husband Loseph feels about it.” To which one replied, "S'alright. I'm told Lesus is very forgiving."