Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Science Depends on Faith

Is it important for Catholics to study science? 
Given the frequent friction between science and the faith, many faithful believers are tempted to throw in the towel and leave science to the worldly. The temptation is reinforced by the strenuous arguments of secular atheists who paint a picture of superstitious faith resisting the noble advance of knowledge, led by science.
One Catholic thinker who is brave enough to stand against this false picture of history is the late Fr. Stanley Jaki (1924 -2009) who showed through numerous studies that modern science in fact has its birth not in the rejection of the Catholic view of the world, but precisely in the Catholic view of the world. Writing for Crisis magazine, Fr. Jaki stated,  
Nothing irks the secular world so much as a hint, let alone a scholarly demonstration, that supernatural revelation, as registered in the Bible, is germane to science. Yet biblical revelation is not only germane to science -- it made the only viable birth of science possible.”
  Fr. Jaki and other Catholic thinkers have argued that not only does the view of faith not contradict science, but that science itself depends on faith, and the Catholic faith specifically. 
As Catholics, then, we have an obligation not only to be friendly to science, but to claim it as our own. In this newsletter’s quote, G. K. Chesterton claims that Catholic philosophy is 
“entirely the praise of God as the Creator of the World.” 
To abandon the legitimate call to science is, in a sense, to abandon a certain kind of praise God has called us to, that is, the praise of discovering and delighting in the world he has made for us
As Catholics our task is to take on science fearlessly, and find in it not suspicion but rather the praise of our God.

Catholics Studying Science, by Michael Baruzzini
Crisis Magazine

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