Wednesday, August 10, 2005

The Evolution Controversy Among Catholics

Last month an column written by a Roman Catholic theologian appeared in the New York Times which immediately attracted worldwide attention. Cardinal Chistoph Schönborn, the Archbishop of Vienna and the chairman of the editorial committee that produced the Catechism of the Catholic Church, explained in his column that although the Church can accept certain elements of evolutionary theory, the proposition that human life evolved through "an unguided, unplanned process of random variation and natural selection" contradicts Christianity's teaching about God as Creator of human life.

That column didn't set well, of course, with the scientific establishment whose quite un-scientific worship of Evolution is already reeling with new defections, new assaults from true science, and new understanding from the general public of the irresponsible obscurantism the Darwin tribe has been guilty of this last century and a half.

So to try and deliver a counter punch, another Catholic (well, he's an American Jesuit; they're kinda' Catholic anyhow) has written in the British newspaper The Tablet that belief in Darwinian evolution is still okey-dokey.

Father George Coyne, who runs the Vatican Observatory at Castel Gandolfo, Italy, when he's not teaching astronomy at the University of Arizona, argued that Cardinal Schönborn had merely "darkened the waters" with his criticism of Darwinian evolution. Indeed, Coyne openly contradicted the Cardinal by claiming a Catholic can yet value God's providence even if said Catholic believes that life "evolved through a process of random genetic mutations and natural selection."

This, of course, is the Bette Midler sort of religion; namely, that God watches "from a distance." It is a thoroughly unbiblical and, I repeat, unscientific position. That Fr. Coyne is typical of the crowd that cannot face either the facts or their previous failure to embrace those facts instead bowing to popular theories promoted by quite serious enemies of Christianity is very sad.