"Intelligent design is incompatible with science." So says a spokesman for a conference - going on right now - sponsored by the Vatican-based Pontifical Gregorian University, entitled: Biological Evolution: Facts and Theories. Of course, the usual suspects are involved, the Templeton Fund - a group extremely hostile to Intelligent Design (ID)- whose primary dedication it seems is to promote a theological baptismal of Evolutionary Theory.
If, as the Vatican claims to believe, "the Heavens declare the glory of God and the Earth shows forth his handiwork", why would it be beyond the pale to admit even the scientific possibilities of ID among men of intelligence? And why is any criticism of the philosophical implications of Evolution seemingly off limits?
My only guess is that the Templeton folks are simply committed evolutionists who've finally found their ecclesiastical sellout - an institution that dreads being seen as scientifically unfashionable: the Roman Catholic Church. And for the RCC's part, it's as if they just want to curry favor with "Big Science" and have a hand in the making of the Novus Ordo Secularum. First you disinvite the Faithful. Then invite the Evolutionists over for dinner and say absolutely nothing to offend their sensibilities. That's super amazing grace right there. The Vatican's science and philosophy departments ought to be ashamed. Denying ID a place at the table of discussion virtually guarantees a conference devoid of scientific acknowledgement of a Creator. It virtually guarantees the conference will be a celebration of the triumph of Darwinism in all its forms over Faith, too. But alas Rome, in retreat, suggests otherwise.
Check out this juicy tidbit from the Vatican:
"A Christian can believe in the providential design of God in Creation, without transforming it into a “scientific theory” that competes with another one: these are definitely different levels of interpretation. However, this in turn requires that no scientific theory is placed as the ultimate explanation of reality, which would reduce it to a pseudo-metaphysics, or to a pseudo-religion – in any case, the opposite of science."
In other words, you may believe in God's design, just don't try to make it a scientific claim to knowledge. We just don't compete with Evolution.
This is not purely about seeking dogma and finding none - because that's not what this meeting is about. And to be sure, the Young Earth Creationists operate from a different playbook as everyone knows, but ID is - at the end of the day - a scientific redeclaration of the same views of Einstein, Newton, Pascal, Galileo, and many other titans of science who happen to believe in the awesome complexity of God's design. It is the voice of truth found in all of the complexity of the universe as we measure it and understand it. And I (and others) ask the RCC: WHAT IS TRUTH?
Vatican teaching holds that Roman Catholicism and evolutionary theory are not necessarily at odds. Okay. But let's not forget Tertullian's question: "What does Athens have to do with Jerusalem?" It raises the question of any ultimate compatibility between Faith with Science - because with "Big Science" the problem only gets worse for Jerusalem. It would be interesting to see if the Vatican folks remember this once the bamboozling gets underway at that conference.
As an evangelical Protestant, I often tell people to respect the intellectual rigor and tradition of Roman Catholicism, but to keep an eye on their uncanny ability to give away the biblical farm.
Remember Sola Scriptura!
Psalm 19:1-3The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows his handiwork.
Day to day utters speech, and night to night shows knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain to it.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, said the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.