Its Evolution Weekend!
One was a book by the National Academy of Sciences, and the other was a groundbreaking theological statement by the mainline Protestant denomination, the United Church of Christ, that sought to end the "feud" between science and religion. The UCC backed it up at the time with an ad campaign targeted to science blogs.
United Church of Christ (which has more than a million members) has devoted a section of its national web site titled: Not Mutually Exclusive, that includes many resources. (It is also important to note that the UCC is not the only Christian church with serious, non fundamentalist approaches to religion and science.)
The UCC reported:
With hopes of mending a millenniums-old feud between religion and science, the UCC has launched a new web-based advertising campaign geared toward the scientific and technological communities.
The New York Times reported on Thomas' pastoral letter:
In an interview, he said he wanted to encourage engagement between science and religion "in ways that can enrich each other and challenge each other, particularly at a time when the prevailing public impression is that faith is an enemy of science or vice versa." He said he was referring to recent books attacking religion but also "the creationist approach, the continuing caricature of the opposition of evolution and religion."
The National Academy of Sciences book was discussed in a nationally syndicated Religion News Service story at the time:
A top panel of U.S. scientists has published a new book asserting that belief in the theory of evolution and religious faith "can be fully compatible," and that creationism has no place in science classes.
These are, of course, bright spots in what has been, and in many ways continues to be, a dark era. Natural, common sense realignments in politics and religion are overdue and deeply necessary to address the significant advancements of the Religious Right in all areas of life for the past several decades.
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