Passing the Torch
J. W. Haas, Jr.
Wenham MA 01984
From: PSCF 42 (March 1990): 1.
Wilbur Bullock has been an active member of the American Scientific Affiliation for forty years. He has served on the Executive Council, participated in Annual Meetings, and supported the activities of the New England local section. Over the last six years he has been the Editor of Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith. Wilbur has carried out this task with a firm hand and a sensitivity toward both reader and author. While continuing and expanding the traditions of our journal, he has developed an effective core of manuscript reviewers with a view to providing articles which attract as well as inform the reader. Though Wilbur has taken a strong editorial stance on occasion, he has encouraged comment on all sides of an issue. We thank Wilbur for these years of service to ASA and welcome him to the journal's Editorial Board.
We also note that Russell Mixter has retired from the Editorial Board. Russ has served the ASA from the earliest days, including a stint as Editor of this journal. His contributions to the ASA and distinguished teaching career at Wheaton College have been a model for all of us.
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This issue offers a diverse range of papers. I encourage you to take the time to read them and respond with a letter to the Editor or an article which will broaden the discussion.
D. Gareth Jones offers a Christian bioethical perspective designed to counter "failures in the system," such as those which led to recent medical scandals in Australasia. These case studies demonstrate the "minefields" present in current medical advances.
Robert Fischer deals with the perennial question of the length of time involved in the "creation period." He argues that both scripture and nature point to an ancient earth whose creation "days" were longer than 24 hours.
Marvin McDonald offers the second half of his discussion on "hierarchy theory." In this paper, he examines the fruitful use of levels concepts in science-Christianity relationships by Richard Bube and Donald MacKay. He concludes with helpful suggestions for further expansion of hierarchy approaches to questions where dialogue has been difficult or where scholars from diverse disciplines must join together in attacking a problem.
John Armstrong provides historical perspective on the thinking of William Buckland, an Anglican priest and Reader in Mineralogy and Geology at Oxford during the first half of the 19th century. Buckland was a pivotal figure in a period of transition from "Mosaic" to "scientific" geology. Armstrong suggests that Buckland's thinking is much more in tune with an evolutionary framework than that of modern-day "creationists."
The Editor reports on the state of science-faith dialogue in
Western Europe, a region whose roots are being shaken by political and economic
changes which portend a new face for lands divided by an "iron curtain" for four
decades. Christianity-science discussion is found in many quarters, with a depth
and diversity generally unknown to North Americans.