Friday, September 01, 2006

Pope to debate evolution with students

I'm really looking forward to more news on this! Though I'm a little irked that the media continues to portray Intelligent Design theory as inimical to evolutionary processes. I would think that modern catholic thought on the subject (if not Benedict himself) may be seeking a way to merge the two ideas, an attempt which should be applauded.

The following article comes from The Australian. Biretta tip to Kendall and crew over at titusonenine.

By Tom Heneghan in Paris
August 30, 2006

POPE Benedict will gather some of his former theology students on Friday for a private weekend debate on evolution and religion, an issue conservative Christians have turned into a political cause in the United States.

Benedict, who taught theology at four German universities before rising in the Catholic Church hierarchy, has pondered weighty ideas with his former Ph.D students at annual meetings since the late 1970s without any media fuss.

But his election as pope last year and controversies over teaching evolution in the United States have aroused lively interest in this year's reunion on September 1-3 at the papal summer residence of Castel Gondolfo outside Rome.

Religion and science blogs are buzzing about whether it means the Vatican will take a more critical view of evolution and possibly embrace "Intelligent Design," which claims to have scientific proof that human life could not have simply evolved.

But Father Stephan Horn, a German theologian organising the pope's meeting with 39 former students, said that reflected a misunderstanding of how the so-called "student circle" works and what the Catholic Church teaches about evolution. "We've never drawn any conclusions in our student circle," he said. "This is an open exchange of ideas that does not aim for a conclusion.
"It has nothing to do with creationism," he added, referring to a fundamentalist Protestant view that God created the world in six days as described in the Book of Genesis. "Catholic theology does not endorse creationist views."


nova-arevette-avon said...

The Pope debating evolution with students? Why not scientists?

lexorandi2 said...

Since the Catholic Church has accepted (or at least hasn't rejected) the scientific basis of evolution the "debate" is theological in nature, not scientific.

jbrim said...

It should be remembered that these are *former* doctoral students, now PhD's. Not just students.

John C. said...

"I would think that modern catholic thought on the subject (if not Benedict himself) may be seeking a way to merge the two ideas [Christianity & evolution], an attempt which should be applauded."

Benedict oughta be working on a way to merge Christianity with popery.

Maybe he'll kiss a copy of The Origin of Species being held by Peter Singer, sort of like his dhimmi predecessor kissing a Koran.