Pope says evolution and Big Bang are A-OK routes when God still drives the bus

Pope Frank breaks with former Pope Benny in embracing scientific concepts of the origin of the universe and the process of evolution as being not inconsistent with faith. Meh. Nothing new. Catholicism is in desperate need to look relevant in the modern world and to distance themselves from clearly wrong and ridiculous ideas about how Fundamentalists think nature works. Now if they can only come to terms with that birth control issue…

Pope says evolution, Big Bang are real.

Pope Francis has waded into the controversial debate over the origins of human life, saying the big bang theory did not contradict the role of a divine creator, but even required it.

“When we read about Creation in Genesis, we run the risk of imagining God was a magician, with a magic wand able to do everything. But that is not so,” Francis said.

“He created human beings and let them develop according to the internal laws that he gave to each one so they would reach their fulfillment.”

Francis said the beginning of the world was not “a work of chaos” but created from a principle of love. He said sometimes competing beliefs in creation and evolution could co-exist.

Unlike much of evangelical Protestantism in the U.S., Catholic teaching traditionally has not been at odds with evolution. In 1950, Pope Pius XII proclaimed there was no opposition between evolution and Catholic doctrine. In 1996, St. John Paul II endorsed Pius’ statement.

Giovanni Bignami, a professor and president of Italy’s National Institute for Astrophysics, welcomed Francis’ comments, saying he had buried the “pseudo theories” of creationists.

“The pope’s statement is significant,” Bignami told Italian news agency Adnkronos. “We are the direct descendants from the Big Bang that created the universe. Evolution came from creation.”

The headline of the USA Today article is misleading, as Pope Francis is not saying these things are true in the scientific sense. He’s saying the Big Bang and evolution came about because God decided to create the universe which is NOT the scientific consensus. He still wants the watchmaker God, someone to push the button – still supernatural. But science has no need for that hypothesis.


This is just the microbes. From: Nature

However, any step towards pulling people more towards the actual processes of the universe (not the world as the Pope notes), is a positive. It’s just not impressive. It’s the ultra-conservatives that are on the extreme edge and take the word of the Bible way too literally and fail to grasp biology and cosmology.

Watch video of Francis’ statement here:

  9 comments for “Pope says evolution and Big Bang are A-OK routes when God still drives the bus

  1. Peter Robinson
    October 29, 2014 at 2:22 PM

    It’s a last desperate but doomed rearguard action to defend nonsense against the onslaught of scientific discovery.

  2. The Rook
    October 29, 2014 at 3:47 PM

    Perhaps not really a significant step forward, but it does make those Fundamentalist Christian creationists look just a little bit more like an isolated bunch of ignorant fools with their wacky 6,000 year old Earth interpretation. As such, I welcome the pope’s statement.

  3. Chris Howard
    October 29, 2014 at 4:59 PM

    Ockham’s Razor ignored, plain and simple.

    One could stop with the sentence “The Big Bang Theory and evolution are scientifically sound theories, that stand on their own.” but the religious/superstitious/”spiritual” have to add the caveat “because God(s)/Creative Force/airy fairy pixie Goddess made it that way.”

    I often wonder why people feel the desperate need to add unnecessary elements to the equation?

  4. tom fitchette
    October 30, 2014 at 12:36 AM

    Excellent headline!! Sums it up perfectly.

  5. kiljoy616
    October 30, 2014 at 5:53 AM

    True in what you say but lets not forget most Catholics don’t really follow much of the dictates of the church and most Catholics seem to be pretty water down now a days. People have to still want their woo it would seem in the billions.

    We are not going to get rid of superstition until what ever makes people want to believe in superstition and afterlife is gone from our DNA and that is not going to happen any time soon. More like the future is not going to be so nice and bright as cults push for their vileness to be the norm of the world.

  6. Chris Hunt
    October 30, 2014 at 5:56 AM

    There’s a “controversial debate over the origins of human life”? It’s news to me.

    I don’t see how this statement means that “Pope Frank breaks with former Pope Benny.” As the quoted article notes, evolution has been accepted by the Catholic church since 1950, and the two most recent Popes seem to be – ahem – singing from the same hymnsheet:

    “In July 2007 at a meeting with clergy Pope Benedict XVI noted that the conflict between ‘creationism’ and evolution (as a finding of science) is ‘absurd'”

    “On October 27, 2014, Pope Francis issued a statement at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences that ‘Evolution in nature is not inconsistent with the notion of creation'”

    Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catholic_Church_and_evolution

  7. Kurt
    October 30, 2014 at 4:43 PM

    This is often an argument I’ve used to bring believers closer to the fold of science and atheist. To me, there can only really be two logical possibilities, assuming as I do that many people lie or make mistakes (which we know is true):

    1. The universe has sets of natural laws and only through science can we uncover them for our benefit.

    2. The universe has sets of natural laws and only through science can we uncover spiritual truth, as God created those universal sets of natural laws.

    I believe the first but the second point works well toward driving folks toward supporting science if they are believers. Also, if you watch Religulous, the Papal astronomer is one of the few truly sane and intelligent-sounding people on the side of religion.

  8. One Eyed Jack
    October 31, 2014 at 8:18 AM

    In a model of the universe that proposes a Creator, yet operates exactly as it would without a Creator, a Creator is rendered moot.

  9. October 31, 2014 at 4:05 PM

    You’re right about the average American Catholic, I think. Anecdote: I worked with a guy taking lessons to convert to Catholicism/ His wife was Catholic and she was repeatedly appalled by what he was taught – including that evolution is “okay” with the Church.

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