We all know the history between science and religion. More conservative Popes, in recent times, have opinion, that scientific ideas are evil, in particular ones, that state, that we are descended from other species. However, things have taken unexpected turn with new Pope Francis.
He said, that the Catholic Church sees no conflict between science and religion, accepting that the universe was created in the Big Bang, instead of insisting on a literal interpretation of the book of Genesis.
It is a very remarkable step in relations between science and the Church, as the Vatican is remembered for burning Giordano Bruno, for postulating the existence of many worlds, Galileo was forced to revoke his views because of the threat of torture. Nowadays, the attacks on science are coming more from Evangelical Protestants.
The first Pope, to acknowledge the possibility of evolution, was Pope Pius XII in 1950. His view was very reluctant and in his encyclical Humani Generis reads,
“Some imprudently and indiscreetly hold that evolution, which has not been fully proved, even in the domain of natural sciences, explains the origin of all things, and audaciously support the monistic and pantheistic opinion that the world is in continual evolution.”
Now, as a smart move, to integrate the Church into the 21st Century, Pope Francis said it clearer but still kept Church’s proud traditions.
“When we read the creation story in Genesis we run the risk of imagining that God was a magician, with a magic wand which is able to do everything. But it is not so. He created beings and let them develop according to internal laws which He gave everyone, so they would develop, so they would reach maturity.” said Pope Francis.
In the Vatican, there is the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, which was established to promote mathematical and physical sciences. Among the almost 50 Nobel Prize winners in this Academy, there are also names of giants as Rutherford, Plank and Bohr.
When Pope Francis addressed the Academy on October 28, he said, that evolution of nature is not inconsistent with the notion of creation because evolution presuppose the creation of beings which evolve. He added, that the Big Bang, which is today presented as the origin of the world, is not in real conflict with the divine act of creation.
The history of the Universe in 10 minutes (Video):
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