Continuing with the exploration and reflection through a series of articles written in a conversational language about Catholicism, about God, about Jesus, about the Church and many other faith related topics. Here we present:
Question 5 – Can faith and science get along?
Faith and science are not mutually exclusive. They are not competitors. The reason is simple. Faith and science answer different questions. It is therefore not surprising that among great scientists you find both believers and non-believers. The inventor of the theory of the Big Bang, Georges Lemaître, was a learned professor and a Catholic* priest*.
Faith gives an answer to questions like: why do we exist? What is the meaning of life? Why is there something instead of nothing? Nuclear physics, chemistry or mathematics can’t answer those questions. That is not their domain. The question the scientist wants to answer is how our world works. For centuries people thought and believed that they could find the answer to that question in the Bible*. It has only been a few centuries since Christians started to disassemble these questions, an unravelling that is still going on.
Many people say that they believed as a child, but that they lost their faith when they discovered science. One of the reasons for this is that many people’s knowledge of faith has been limited to the knowledge they had of it when they were children. It is not surprising that such a belief is undermined by the confrontation with scientific thinking. For others, it is precisely the practice of science that is the starting point of a path of faith: who or what is at the origin of this incredibly beautiful cosmos?
– Do you think there is a contradiction between faith and science?
– Does science influence what you believe?
Feel free to leave your thoughts, reflections or comments below.
Watch this space! Coming up: Question 6 – Are you born a Christian?
Follow these links to go back to Question 1 – Is believing exceptional? , Question 2 – Is Faith for simple souls? , Question 3 – Can you be a Christian and yet doubt your faith? , Question 4 – Can a believer be critical?
If you wish to learn more about this resource follow this link “52 Questions and Answers about faith”
About the author:
Nikolaas Sintobin, SJ, joined the Society of Jesus in 1989, following a short career as a lawyer. He was trained as a Jesuit in Brussels, Paris, and Santiago de Chile. Today he is a spiritual director who is keenly interested in online ministry and discovering new ways to help people find God.
This text is republished with the permission of Messenger Publications, Ireland. To buy a hard copy of the book click here.