7.15.2005

Genesis 2.0e: Adam Descended from Apes?


They Blinded Me with Science: Pope B-16 has some 'splaining to do.

Scientists Ask Pope to Address Evolution

from International Herald Tribune

Three scientists, two of them Roman Catholic biologists, have asked Pope Benedict XVI to clarify the church's position on evolution in light of recent statements by Cardinal Christoph Schonborn, an influential theologian, that the modern theory of evolution may be incompatible with Catholic faith.

The scientists asked the pope to reaffirm statements on the subject by Pope John Paul II and others "that scientific rationality and the church's commitment to divine purpose and meaning in the universe were not incompatible."

It is crucial, they say in a letter, that "the Catholic Church not build a new divide, long ago eradicated, between the scientific method and religious belief."

Lawrence Krauss, a physicist at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, wrote the letter on behalf of himself and the two biologists, Francisco Ayala of the University of California at Irvine and Kenneth Miller of Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. Ayala is a former Dominican priest, and Miller is a Roman Catholic who has written on the reconciliation of science and faith. Krauss and Ayala said that they had spoken to other American scientists who are members of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and who supported their effort. The academy is a 400-year-old international nonsectarian organization.

Krauss said Tuesday that a copy of the letter was en route to the pope.

Schonborn's remarks, which appeared in an essay on the Op-Ed page of The New York Times, were prompted in part by an essay that Krauss wrote in The Times in May on the compatibility of religion and evolution. In his essay, Schonborn, the archbishop of Vienna, said that the theory of evolution, as it is understood by scientists today, is not true.

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