of the
American Scientific Affiliation &
Canadian Scientific & Christian Affiliation 


Volume 50, Number 4                                                                                                                    JUL/AUG 2008

Susan Daniels Elected to the ASA Council 

This spring Susan Daniels was elected to the ASA Council. She is a health scientist administrator in the Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (DMID) at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), a component of the National Institutes of Health. She does strategic planning a_DSC1388Danielsnd scientific program evaluation for DMID’s extramural biodefense and infectious disease research programs and manages the division’s conference, training, and diversity grants. 

Susan earned her BS in biology and French from Wheaton College and her PhD in molecular and cell biology from Brandeis University in Waltham, MA. She received her initial student membership in ASA as a gift from the biology department at Wheaton in 1993, and has been a member ever since. 

It was Susan who asked ASA in the 1990s to consider scholarships that would enable students to attend our annual meetings. With the help of one, she attended her first Annual Meeting in 2000. Subsequently, she asked if ASA would consider allowing a student or early career member to participate in the Executive Council to contribute ideas and provide the perspective of the younger generation. The Council thought that was a good idea and invited her to become the first ASA Student and Early Career Representative to the Council in 2002. She really appreciated this experience, learning about the history, culture, and operations of ASA and built relationships with members of the Council. 

Susan was elected a Fellow in 2004. What she enjoys most about the ASA is fellowshipping with the wide variety of Christians in the sciences and science-related fields. She appreciates the intellectual stimulation at the meetings and says, “There are always new people to meet, new things to learn, and new insights to gain into how to practice science while walking in faith.” 

Susan lives in Rockville, MD, and is married to physicist David Daniels, who works at a company that does terrorism risk analysis for state and federal government clients. They have two sons, Kai, 4, and Joss, 1. Both Susan and David sing in the choir of the National Presbyterian Church in Washington, DC. Her other interests include birdwatching and gardening. We welcome Susan to the Council and know she has a lot to contribute. 

ASA Email Survey 

On June 5, 2008, we sent an email to members for whom we have an email address, requesting that they complete a survey which will give us their input about our publications, website, annual meetings, and other ASA activities. Deadline for survey submissions is July 20. 

If you didn’t receive the email but would like to participate in the survey, please send your email address to 

Early Career Network Events Planned 

In keeping with the ASA’s commitment to students and trainees, this summer’s annual meeting will feature several events designed especially for graduate students, Bill Newsome postdocs, and those beginning a scientific career. 

Bill Newsome, professor of neurobiology and investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute of Stanford University, will speak to the ASA Student and Early Career Network (SECN) in a special symposium. Bill is a scientist in the secular academy who is also involved with the graduate ministry of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship at Stanford. He was a plenary speaker at year’s meeting in Edinburgh, addressing the developments in neuroscience that have implications for Christian faith. This year he will speak on integrating Christian faith into our professional lives. A time for interaction and discussion will follow his talk. 

A second SECN event, the Science Careers Panel, will feature five scientists in a variety of science careers in academia, industry, and government, giving short talks on their career paths, what their jobs entail, the skills and experience needed to enter and succeed in those careers, and how faith and science come together for them. Afterward, there will be a panel discussion to engage questions from the audience, followed by time for networking.  

Other events at this year’s meeting will provide opportunities for students and early career attendees to network, both with each other and with other members of the ASA. 

We thank Gwen Schmidt and Susan Daniels for organizing these events. 

The Executive Director’s Corner
Randall D. Isaac 

The ASA office recently received advance excerpts from HarperCollins Publishers of “The Green Bible” to be published later this year. Analogous to the red-letter Bibles that print Jesus’ words in red ink, this Bible will highlight in green those verses that speak to God’s care of creation. The selection of which verses to highlight may not be as easy as in the red-letter Bible but the intent is certainly clear. This Bible, using the New Revised Standard Version, will include a topical index and a trail study guide for issues relating to creation care. Inspirational essays from key leaders and thinkers in this field, including our own Cal DeWitt, are also featured as well as a history of Christian teachings on this topic. 

When I first learned of this project about a year and a half ago, I was a bit puzzled. Isn’t the message of God’s care for his creation clear enough without the distraction of different colored ink? Now that the project is coming to fruition and I’ve seen a few excerpts, I’m beginning to understand the value. 

Bibles published with topical themes seem to be popular these days, and this one is likely to be well received. Personally, I find the green ink on selected verses to be a little distracting. I caught myself pondering why one verse was selected and another wasn’t, rather than concentrating on the message. The subliminal message may be more important, conveying the constant awareness that God is frequently speaking of his love and care for his creation. The best value seems to be the unique essays and six “green” themes that are traced throughout the narrative. 

As Christians in science, we are deeply interested in understanding not only how to describe nature but how God relates to his creation. The doctrine of creation and its care is such a fundamental part of Christian faith that it isn’t surprising that it generates much dissension, especially regarding methods of caring for creation. Christians have held widely differing views ranging from benign neglect in light of the eschaton to conquest and dominion as our God-given right. Add a broad spectrum of political concerns, and we have the recipe for an active discussion. 

As Christians, we can all agree that God created the universe. It comes as no surprise that the Bible should be filled with references to his creation. Few would disagree that humans were given a unique responsibility with respect to that creation. The nature of that responsibility and how to fulfill it are the points of departure. Though I’ve only read a few excerpts, I gather that the Green Bible doesn’t attempt to resolve any controversy over the extent of global warming and the human role in such a trend, much less what measures we should take to address the crisis. More importantly, the Green Bible draws our attention to the ubiquity of God’s concern for creation and our responsibility. The green ink is a repeated reminder that creation care is not something to be tacked on as an additional subtopic of life but is an integral part of our lifestyle. 

God did not create the human species as an independent entity but as fully dependent on and interactive with virtually everything in our environment. He sent his only Son to be part of that human species, thereby participating in that dependence on his own creation. Therein lies the starting point of our understanding of God’s love for his creation. The incarnation is the seminal point of contact between God and his creation. From the lens of the incarnation and the cross, we can begin to see God intimately connected to his own creation. What a privilege we have to be part of that creation! What a responsibility we have to understand that creation and to be God’s stewards in caring for it! 

The ASA represents a wide range of disciplines in science. As we work together, we have the opportunity to share with each other that diversity of insight that helps us understand the interconnectedness of nature. As we listen to God’s Word and to each other, we are brought to our knees in worship of our Creator and to our feet in action to care for what he has entrusted to us. 


Welcome, New Members! April–May 2008 

Allen, Lin –Greeley, CO
Bailey, Celeste –Solana Beach, CA
Barr, Daniel A. –Tempe, AZ
Billman, Jennifer A. –Boiling Springs, PA
Chen, Haimei –Evanston, IL
Clapper, Robert –Wheaton, IL
Clemente, Ignacio J. –Barcelona, Spain
Comeford, Lorrie –Middleton, MA
Cowan, Ray F. –Mountain View, CA
Crosby, George W. –Sharon Springs, NY
Frantz, Stephen –Portland, OR
Fuchs, Kent –Ithaca, NY
Garner, James L. –Jacksonville, FL
Gauch, Jr., Hugh G. –Ithaca, NY
Gibson, Brian W. –Bedford, TX
Kim, Richard Y. –Beaverton, OR
Landivar, Micaela A. –Waco, TX
Ledgerwood, Tim J. –Durbanville, Republic of South Africa
Loose, Mark W. –Scottsbluff, NE
Lyons, William H. –Albion, WA
Marterre, Buddy –Winston-Salem, NC
Medena, Brian J. –Grand Rapids, MI
Mills, Jeff –Palmdale, CA
Pittman, Mark A. –Tomah, WI
Rudell, Benjamin L. –Champaign, IL
Swamidass, Paul M. –Auburn, AL
Vanden Akker, Daniel J. –Grand Rapids, MI
Wohlgemuth, Andrew R. –Old Town, ME 

A Role Model in “Contending for the Truth” 

Taylor University biology prof. Andrew Whipple had a very well-articulated Letter to the Editor published in Science. In its 22 February 2008 edition, Andrew Whipplethe magazine had published an article titled “Crossing the Divide,” reporting sympathetically that paleontologist Stephen Godfrey was “still recovering from the traumatic journey” as he “rejected creationism and embraced evolution.”  

Whipple’s was one of two contrasting responses published in the 9 May issue. Oklahoma State University pharmacologist Craig Stevens criticized the article as “unworthy of publication in Science.” He continued, 

Give me a break! Had Science magazine been around during the 17th century, would we have seen such consolatory text for those ‘traumatized’ by the fact that the Sun does not revolve around the Earth? … While Dr. Godfrey’s escape from the ignorant shroud of biblical literalists is praiseworthy, Science magazine is not the place to give even a hint of respectability to those who would deny the fundamental fact of evolution. There is too much at stake … to give any credence to those promoting unscientific nonsense … and justifying irrational beliefs under the guise of religion. 

A Considerate Contrast 

Whipple commended the article, saying it “accurately and respectfully describes the crux of the challenge that our scientific understanding presents to members of faith communities.” 

He added, “… [F]or members of the scientific community to make theological statements in the name of science is philosophically illegitimate, and destructive in our truth-seeking efforts. In this short essay, Science has published the only example I have read in the leading scientific literature that takes the time and effort to understand and express what really drives the concerns of the majority of evangelicals, and does so in a manner that respects the integrity of both the scientific endeavor and the integrity of the faith commitments within the evangelical community.” 

Commending the ASA 

Whipple concluded, “Allow me to suggest that this serves as a call to us in the sciences to be more humble as we interact with the faith community. We as scientists ought to be those most keenly aware of the tenuous and ever-changing nature of human knowledge, even as we build on that which has stood the test of time. We ought to behave as though the faith community poses no threat to the integrity of faith. That is the challenge to us brought forth so eloquently in this piece, and is a major focus of organizations such as the American Scientific Affiliation. Let us all humbly seek for truth as we respect one another’s efforts to do so.”  Whipple can be contacted at 

Service and Science
“As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” John 20:21 

1. Over twenty years ago, nuns of the School Sisters of Notre Dame, based at a convent in Mankato, MN, volunteered to be tested each year to track the progression of Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related brain disorders. They were joined by other nuns at various convents nationwide. Over 650 participated. They also agreed to donate their brains upon their death. A 93-yr-old nun recently stated that she looks at her participation as service, not sacrifice. “I’ve tried to do good while I’m alive, and I liked the idea that I could do something good after death,” she said. Others said that God gets their souls when they die, and they are comfortable giving their brains to University of Minnesota epidemiology professor David Snowdon. Stephanie Reitz, Associated Press, 25 Dec. 2007

2. The Christian Veterinary Mission (CVM) headquartered in Seattle, WA, whose executive director is Kit Flowers, oversees Christian veterinarians who serve short-term as well as those who commit to lifelong service. Kit frequently mans the CVM booth at veterinary conferences, meeting and praying with potential CVM fieldworkers. Let God expand your vision of his world and use the talents he has given you to serve others. Contact CVM at (206) 546-7569, 

3. Heifer International is always seeking volunteers. It deals with world hunger and poverty and challenges folks to examine their own habits and beliefs on the path to becoming more responsible global citizens. Care for livestock, tend gardens, lead educational programming, and provide operations support. Contact the volunteer office at or call (501) 889-5124. See or  

4. Habitat for Humanity sees churches and faith communities as active partners. Congregations of all sizes pray, donate, build, and advocate. Their participation is crucial to the organization’s success and identity. Jose Villasenor, manager of Habitat for Humanity International’s Church Relations International Program, says, “When churches are involved in a project, they can truly complement Habitat. The work becomes more holistic. And churches that are missionally involved with us grow.” For more information, visit the Church Relations page featured at 

Ecumenical Roundtable 

The Ecumenical Roundtable in Science and Religion met April 11 and 12 at Ghost Ranch, a Presbyterian (USA) retreat and educational center in Abiquiu, NM. Attending were members of the Episcopal Church Network for Science, Technology and Faith; the Alliance for Faith, Science, & Technology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; the Presbyterian Association on Science, Technology and the Christian Faith; the United Church of Christ Science and Technology Network; and the United Methodist Church Science and Theology Network. Each year some ASA members attend. 

The purpose is to share experiences, information, and, where possible, material resources related to initiatives that assist their communions to give more deliberate attention to developments in science and technology and to consider their significance for the thought and practices of their churches. In addition, the Roundtable seeks to provide encouragement in the effort to elevate scientific and technological issues in the lives of the churches and to discover projects of mutual interest. 

This year the theme was the relation of science, technology, and Christian faith initiatives that focused on environmental concerns and care of creation. Members involved in their denominations’ environmental concerns were invited to attend. There was much sharing of creation care initiatives. 

Larry Rasmussen, Emeritus Reinhold Niebuhr Professor of Social Ethics from Union Seminary, spoke on “Environment and Energy.” He offered a historical theological consideration of the move of Christianity from its formation in an essentially Neolithic culture through its adaptation to an industrial culture. Today, Christianity must relate to an unprecedented human-dominated planet. 

In another presentation, Rasmussen reviewed four elements of traditional religious practice which might be revived to meet today’s ethical challenges: asceticism over against consumerism; sacramentalism over against instrumentalism; mysticism over against alienation; and prophetic-liberative practices over against oppression. 

The setting—in the high desert of New Mexico, at an elevation of about 6,200 feet—was both aesthetically and experientially profound for the theme of the meeting. One highlight was a walking tour of the Ranch that featured its constructed wetlands for water treatment, the recycling program, and sustainable ranching practices. * Jim Miller, General Missioner of the Presbyterian Association on Science, Technology and the Christian Faith. 

Evolution Weekend 

Michael Zimmerman, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Butler University in Indianapolis, IN, organized Evolution Weekend starting in February of 2006. It began as Evolution Sunday and has evolved into Evolution Weekend. Congregations across the globe who wish to discuss the compatibility of religion and science participate. The February date was chosen because it marked Darwin’s birthday (Feb. 12). This past February, 814 congregations from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and 9 countries participated. 

Originally, Michael put together a Clergy Letter Project, asking pastors across the globe to affirm the relationship of science and faith. As of May 28, 2008, 11,302 clergy have signed the following statement: 

We the undersigned, Christian clergy from many different traditions, believe that the timeless truths of the Bible and the discoveries of modern science may comfortably coexist. We believe that the theory of evolution is a foundational scientific truth, one that has stood up to rigorous scrutiny and upon which much of human knowledge and achievement rests. To reject this truth or to treat it as “one theory among others” is to deliberately embrace scientific ignorance and transmit such ignorance to our children. We believe that among God’s good gifts are human minds capable of critical thought and that the failure to fully employ this gift is a rejection of the will of our Creator. To argue that God’s loving plan of salvation for humanity precludes the full employment of the God-given faculty of reason is to attempt to limit God, an act of hubris. We urge school board members to preserve the integrity of the science curriculum by affirming the teaching of the theory of evolution as a core component of human knowledge. We ask that science remain science and that religion remain religion, two very different, but complementary, forms of truth. 

Michael was motivated to begin this project in the fall of 2004 when the school board in Grantsburg, WI, passed a series of anti-evolution policies. He and other clergy prepared a statement in support of teaching evolution and within a few weeks nearly 200 clergy affirmed the statement. In addition, groups of educators and scientists sent letters to the Grantsburg School Board and to the Superintendent of Schools protesting these policies. In response, the school board retracted them. From there, Michael decided to make this a nationwide project. February 2009 will be the 200th anniversary of Darwin’s birth and the 150th anniversary of his book, On the Origin of Species

To learn more about Evolution Weekend and the Clergy Letter Project see: and  

In addition to churches, many colleges and universities, libraries, museums, civic groups, and others celebrate Darwin Day, February 12, in honor of the life and work of Charles Darwin. See 

ASAer in Print 

Victor Shane has written In God We Trust: Understanding the Culture War in a Scientific Age: The Pitched Battle for the Soul of America (published by Para-Anchors International, PO Box 19, Santa Barbara, CA 93067). Shane has read widely and provides an eclectic blend of ideas gleaned from sources as diverse as Ptolemy, Kinsey, Augustine, and John Lennon. 

He contends that anti-theistic influences have convinced many Americans of moral relativity, by misapplying the scientific notion of relativity. He counters this by quoting Einstein: “Does the moon exist only when someone is looking at it?” 

Among the many sources that he weaves together, the late Francis A. Schaeffer appears prominently, making statements such as 

I want to say to … those of you who are troubled about the direction our society is going in, that we must not concentrate merely on the “bits and pieces”—permissiveness, pornography, … the breakdown of the family, abortion, infanticide, euthanasia, and many other things. We must understand that all of these dilemmas come as a result of moving [away] from the Judeo-Christian world view … into this other world which is that the final reality is only energy or material, which has existed forever and which has taken its present shape by pure chance. 

Shane summarizes, “The thing that is broken in America started with the cultural swing away from the Judeo-Christian consensus in which the primacy was given to the Creator, toward the atheistic consensus in which the primacy is given to the created thing.” He admonishes Christians to be proactive salt and light, first in American culture and then in global culture. See his website at 

Collins Moving On 

Francis S. Collins, the director of the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has announced that he will step down on August 1 to explore writing projects and other professional opportunities. Collins joined NIH in 1993, succeeding Nobel laureate James Watson as director of the National Center for Human Genome Research, which managed the NIH part of the Human Genome Project. The center became the National Human Genome Research Institute in 1997 and the Human Genome Project was completed in 2003. 

The June 5 issue of Nature devoted a full-page editorial to Collins. Especially noteworthy was the sentence, “He proved to have a rare combination of political acumen, scientific talent and administrative skill—abilities that allowed him to steer the institute through numerous challenges and re-inventions while remaining about as well-liked as it’s possible for an institute director to be.” (“This Time It’s Personal,” Nature 453, 5 June 2008, 

With typical modesty, Collins comments, “The key to success is having wonderful scientific opportunities and stellar colleagues with whom to work. That has been my great privilege here at NIH, an institution that stands for the very best in biomedical research.” 

Collins has been very active in a variety of areas including groundbreaking advances in biomedical research and will be free to concentrate on many more in the future. He is known for his close attention to the ethical, legal, and social implications of genome research and is recognized for his leadership in making the case for the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008. This act recently became law, nearly thirteen years after it was introduced in Congress. It protects Americans from discrimination in health insurance and employment based on their genetic information. 

Before coming to NIH, Collins and collaborators discovered the genes for cystic fibrosis, neurofibromatosis, and Huntington’s disease. Recently, his laboratory at NIH uncovered new insights into the genetic underpinnings that increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, and his team discovered the genetic defect that causes Hutchinson-Gilford progeria, a rare disorder that causes premature aging. 

He has promised to continue working in his lab as a part-time, unpaid “special volunteer” at NIH. ASA has benefitted so much from Francis and we look forward to his contributions in the future. 

For biographical information on him, go to * Geoff Spencer, NIH 

Bible/Archaeology News 

  • According to the 2008 Harris International Poll, the Bible is the favorite book of all time for American adults, regardless of demographic group. Researchers say it’s rare to find such consensus among Americans, regardless of gender, education level, geographic location, race/ethnicity, or age. Yet, more than 2,500 Americans surveyed in an online poll agreed that the Bible is their No. 1 favorite book. The Presbyterian Outlook, May 12, 2008, p. 9. 
  • The United Bible Societies’ latest Scripture Language Report says the cumulative total of languages with some portion of the Bible translated is now 2,454, up from 2,426 the previous year. Good News, The American Bible Society, June/July 2008, p. 2. 
  • The Teaching Company, in their fall 2007 journal on p. 46, states: “Since the invention of the printing press, the world’s consistently best-selling book has been the Bible. Since 1815, it has been printed an estimated five billion times. By the end of 2005, it had been translated into 2,043 languages. In the Western world, the Bible is easy to find: In most hotel rooms, it is handier than the Yellow Pages.” 
  • Archaeologists believe they have found the wall in Jerusalem whose construction is described in the Book of Nehemiah. Artifacts including pottery shards and arrowheads found nearby suggest it is from the fifth century BC, the time of Nehemiah. The dig also uncovered what scientists believe to be the remains of King David’s palace, built by King Hiram of Tyre, also mentioned in the Bible (2 Sam. 5:11). Some scientists are questioning this and the dialogue will go on. Regan Doherty, The Associated Press, Dec. 1, 2007. 
  • “Israeli scientists have inscribed the entire Hebrew text of the Jewish Bible onto a space less than half the size of a grain of sugar. The nanotechnology experts at the Technion Institute in Haifa say the book was etched on a surface that measures less than 0.01 x 1.3 x 0.4 inches. It weighed 0.4 ounces and contained 1,514 pages. Ian Deitch, The Associated Press, Dec. 24, 2007. 

ASAers in Action 

  • David O. Moberg, Marquette University (Emeritus), Milwaukee, WI, was the keynote speaker at the 27th annual meeting of the Association of Nazarene Sociologists and Researchers in Kansas City, March 27–29. His topic was “21st Century Culture Wars: Sociological, Historical, and Biblical Perspectives.” He also served as the responder and discussant to all the presentations of the conference. 

David called attention to the pressures on citizens to take sides on current sociopolitical issues related to abortion and homosexuality, poverty and wealth, concentrations of power in government, taxation policies, vested interests, “trickle down” vs. “thrust up” economic ideologies, medical services as a strictly private concern vs. health care as a universal human right, environmentalism vs. exploitative use of nature resources and a host of other topics. 

He pointed out controversies with respect to the Bible, Christian history, and American Christianity. Christians who apply “biblically correct Christian values” in current culture wars face many difficulties that emerge from the complexity of current issues, our forever incomplete knowledge of relevant circumstances, the inability to predict outcomes of alternative choices with 100% accuracy, entanglements from mixed motivations, and social pressures to indulge in the single-issue politics of significant reference groups. Christians should examine each component in the light of “facts” plus Scripture and only then make their final advocacy commitments. Romans 12:2 and Jude 7:23 are good counsel, especially during election years. 

  • Kevin Nelstead recently returned after teaching high school science at Bucharest Christian Academy in Romania with the Evangelical Free Church of America. He and his wife, Shirley, will be living in Denver while Shirley completes her MA in counseling at Colorado Christian University. Kevin is looking for a job in the Denver area in geology and related fields such as cartography, which he has done before. He asks for our prayers as they adjust and find a home and a job. He can be reached at 
  • Francis Collins co-authored an article published in Science, Feb. 15, 2008, pp. 906–7, titled “Transforming Environmental Health Protection.” The National Institutes of Health and the US Environmental Protection Agency have announced a new toxicity testing agreement which deals with testing the safety of many chemicals such as pesticides and household cleaners. Collins stated, “We are now seeing tools newly available to use for chemical genomics research deployed for greater refinement, speed and capacity in chemical toxicity screening.” * Geoff Spencer, NIH 

Francis was featured in the June 2008 AARP Bulletin. It included almost a full-page photo of him with his motorcycle and, along with many other quotes, included this one. 

We are learning the underlying causes at work in complex diseases like diabetes or high blood pressure, which involve many genes, each with a modest effect. It’s with these more common diseases that we’ve had the recent deluge of discoveries. 

  • ASA Fellow Owen Gingerich (Harvard/Smithsonian) had an article titled “Faith and the Laws of Nature” published in the March/April Science and Spirit magazine. He concluded, 

Some events that seem totally incredulous to those of us who take seriously the world’s stability and dependability, such as the resurrection of Jesus after his crucifixion and entombment, can be seen not as rare suspensions of the laws of nature, but as the intersection of a more fundamental spiritual universe with the physical universe embedded in it—a physical universe in which the ontological laws of nature always hold, but which is only a subset of the total reality. It is a matter of faith that such a spiritual universe exists, and by the same token, also a matter of faith to deny its existence. 

Of Interest 

  • The human evolution extravaganza exhibit continues at the University of Pennsylvania Museum in Philadelphia until November 30. It has five segments: “Fit for life,” “Our place in the natural world,” “Finding your human ancestors,” Witnessing evolution,” and “We are not perfect, but we are OK.” For details, visit 
  • A British charity has drawn national attention over plans to build a theme park, including a television studio, to promote creationism. The charity says the $7 million interactive studio will produce Christian-oriented shows to counter the sex and violence which is so much a part of British television. They claim the studio will promote the account of the creation recorded in Genesis to combat what they perceive as the malign influence of Darwin’s theory of evolution. The charity has not yet chosen a site for the park. 
  • The movie “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed” has generated much response within the science and religion communities. ASAers William Dembski of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Walter Bradley of Baylor University and CiS Fellows Alister McGrath and John Polkinghorne were interviewed in the film. The response of our members has covered a wide range. Jeffrey Schloss, on the biology faculty at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, CA, has written an in-depth review essay which can be found at 
  • The Joint Publication Board of Zygon: Journal of Religion and Science has announced the appointment of Willem B. Drees as the journal’s next Editor-in-Chief. He is professor of philosophy of religion and ethics and outgoing Dean of the Faculty of Religious Studies at Leiden University, the Netherlands. In 2001 he was the executive director of All European Academies, a federation of national academies of sciences in 38 European countries. He has served for the past six years as president of European Society for the Study of Science and Theology. He is vice president for interdisciplinary affairs for the Institute on Religion in an Age of Science (IRAS). Zygon was founded in 1966 as a joint venture of IRAS and the Center for Advanced Study in Religion and Science. It is an academic journal which explores the interactions between religious convictions, science, and technology in the modern world. The editorial office is at the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago. Current editor Philip Hefner comments, “Willem Drees is one of the most distinguished senior religion-and-science thinkers in the world today.” 

Call for Papers 

Researchers and scholars from all disciplines are invited to submit papers addressing the impact of Darwin’s ideas in the Humanities and Social Sciences. Both disciplinary-specific and interdisciplinary approaches are encouraged. Papers accepted for the symposium at San Diego State University Nov. 20–22, 2009, will be published by San Diego State University Press. Limit abstracts to 500 words and send to no later than Nov. 30, 2008. For more information, contact Mark Wheeler, Chair, Department of Philosophy, at (619) 594-6706 or his email above. 

Coming Events 

July 10–13. The Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion in the University of Oxford will have a Conference “God, Nature and Design: Historical and Contemporary.” Contact 

July 17–19. Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity’s 15th Annual International Conference on Bioethics, Chicago, IL. Details at index/html 

July 17–19. “Engaging Our World,” International Institute of Christian Studies, Kansas City Airport Hilton Hotel. Emphases will be (1) understanding and communicating a Christian worldview, (2) applying it and (3) the role and impact of a Christian worldview on specific disciplines. Details at 

July 21–25. Summer Research Workshops on Religion, Spirituality and Health, Duke U., Durham, NC. Details at or 

July 23. David Rives Ministries, a creationist astronomical organization, will meet at Trinity Lutheran Church, 5001 Trotwood Ave. in Columbia, TN. There will be an indoor astronomy presentation and if the weather permits, a telescope viewing outside. See 

Aug. 1–4. ASA/CSCA Annual Meeting, George Fox University, Newberg, OR. 

Aug. 3–7. International Conference on Creationism, Radisson Greentree Hotel, Pittsburgh. Theme: “Developing and Systematizing the Creation Model of Origins.” Sponsored by the Creation Science Fellowship and the Institute for Creation Research. Information at 

Aug. 11–15. Summer Research Workshops on Religion, Spirituality and Health, Duke U., Durham, NC. See July 21–25 event above. 

Aug. 18. “Life of the Mind Conference: Postmodernism & the Emergent Church,” First Evangelical Church, Cerritos, CA. Speakers include J.P. Moreland & Craig Hazen. Information at 

Sept. 18–19. “Are We Safe Yet? Vulnerability and Security in an Anxious Age,” at the Yale University Center for Faith & Culture. This annual event explores the moral implications of crucial questions and problems impacting society today. See for registration and more information. 

Sept. 21–23. Villanova University, near Philadelphia, is hosting an interdisciplinary symposium which coincides with the exhibit “Gregor Mendel: Planting the Seeds of Genetics,” at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia. Featured speakers will be Sean B. Carroll and Kenneth R. Miller. This is free and open to the public.

Sept. 26–27. The Biblical Archaeology Society will have a seminar in Dallas, TX. See 

Oct. 16. David Rives Ministries, a creationist astronomical organization, will meet at the Christian Conference Center, 5064 Lincoln St., Newton, IA. See July 23 event above. 

Oct. 19. Mini-Conference on “Faith, Integration and the Life of the Christian Scholar,” 1–5 p.m., Rivendell House, New Haven, CT. Information available from 

Oct. 23–25. “Bottom-up Approaches to Global Poverty: Appropriate Technology, Social Entrepreneurship, and the Church,” Baylor University, Waco, TX. Contact Walter Bradley at Walter_Bradley@ 

Oct. 30–Nov. 2. The International Christian Studies Association, under the leadership of Oskar Gruenwald, is having a conference in Pasadena, CA, on “Christianity & Democracy: Jacques Maritain in Perspective.” E-mail: or call (626) 351-0419. See 

With the Lord 

  • William Witherspoon died on Jan. 22, at age 98. As a high school student, he began his interest in the physical sciences and by the 1930s, he developed a deep interest in theology. During the 1950s, he studied the concept of higher dimensions and it occurred to him that perhaps he had found the key to making theological doctrine more understandable. William Pollard, Director of Oak Ridge Nuclear Research Laboratory, and an ordained priest in the Episcopal Church, introduced him to Edwin Abbott’s book, Flatland, which dealt with the lower physical dimensions and offered insight to the higher dimensions. There followed in 1967 Witherspoon’s first writings on theology as expressed in the higher dimensions. William believed that string theory has the potential of linking quantum mechanics and Einstein’s theory of relativity. 

William was ordained an elder in the Presbyterian Church in 1939 and taught investment analysis and portfolio management in University College of Washington University in St. Louis, MO, from 1948–1967. He remained active until his death. A list of his publications is at 

  • David Wayne DeBerry died at age 62 on April 3. He was born in Gonzales, TX, and received a BS in chemistry from the University of Texas and a PhD in chemistry from Rice University. As a research chemist, he worked for several Austin based companies during his career including Tracor, Radian, and URS. He also helped found SumX Corporation and CrystaTech Corporation. DeBerry held numerous patents for chemical processes and wrote many published scientific papers and articles. He wanted to help others develop a deeper love and understanding of Christ, so he attended Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary earning a MA in theological studies in 2007. David was especially interested in the relationship between science and theology. He also enjoyed astronomy, electronics, computer programming, and piano. 
  • Stewart Ellery Ensign died April 12, at age 82. Upon graduating from high school, he enlisted in the navy and was trained in radar technology. During his military service, he was converted to Christianity, a commitment that guided the rest of his life. Following discharge, he earned a BS from Bob Jones University, an MA from the University of Wyoming, and a PhD in biology from the University of Nebraska. He completed post-doctoral fellowships at Yale University and the University of California at San Diego. 

In 1962, Stewart joined Westmont College in Santa Barbara, CA, and taught there for 27 years, serving as chair of the biology department and advising students in the pre-medical program he built. Westmont honored his vision and leadership by establishing an endowed scholarship in his name. He was a 55-year member of the ASA. 

Issues in Human Gender, Sexuality, and Sex 

A two-session special symposium, “Issues in Human Gender, Sexuality, and Sex” will be presented at the 2008 Annual Meeting at George Fox University, Newberg, Oregon. It is being coordinated by Hessel Bouma III ( and Heather Looy ( 

Human sexuality and gender are fundamental to our identities as persons, yet the Christian community struggles to understand foundational issues such as God’s intent in creating us as sexual and gendered beings and the appropriate expressions of sexuality and gender. Within the Christian community and society as a whole, struggles surrounding human gender, sexuality, and sex continue for equality, fairness, and justice. Furthermore, the Christian community struggles to discern how research in biology, medicine, psychology, and sociology might apply to the identity struggles of persons encountering broken, distorted, or different gender and sexuality. 

Track A. Gender Issues in the Sciences 

This session focuses on how men and women experience being scientists and Christians, dealing with communities, structures, barriers, and opportunities. These issues are particularly relevant for us—both as Christians and scientists—trying to integrate and function in multiple communities as whole persons. How are women scientists perceived and treated in our churches, academic institutions, and research organizations compared to men? How can men and women keep up with research while balancing the demands of marriage, career, and family? Might affirmative action keep some qualified men out of positions because they are not women? How does this affect how Christians tend to think about women, men, roles, and callings? 

Track B. What the Sciences Tell Us About Gender and Sexuality 

Biology, psychology, and sociology have much to tell us about gender and sexuality. How do Christians engage these stories? This session will focus on intersexuality, sexual orientation, transgender issues, sex changes, endocrine phenomena, and the ethical and theological issues associated with them. 

Congratulations, Long-time ASAers!
Celebrating 35 years of membership 

H. James Armbrecht
Ross O. Barnes
Walter L. Bradley
Dale R. Burger
John B. Cannon
John N. Clayton
Kyle M. Cudworth
Richard L. Daake
Donald D. Detweiler
Arthur D. Fleming
John Forrestal
Susan E. Halbert
Kathleen A. Hardy
Roger H. Kennett
Charles H. Kraft
John E. Kroll
Harris H. Lloyd
Harry J. Lubansky
James F. Mahaffy
David P. Martinsen
Stanley W. Moore
Terrance B. Murphy
Patrick L. Nolan
Richard A. Stark
Charles B. Thaxton
Wesley J. Wentworth, Jr.
David Yee 

The Newsletter of the ASA and CSCA is published bimonthly for its membership by the American Scientific Affiliation. Send Newsletter information to the Editors: David Fisher, 285 Cane Garden Cir., Aurora, IL 60504-2064. E-mail: and Margaret Towne, 8505 Copper Mountain Ave., Las Vegas, NV 89129. E-mail: Both receive e-mail through 

Please send Canadian matters to: CSCA, P.O. Box 63082, University Plaza, Dundas, ON, Canada  L9H 4H0

Send address changes and other business items to the American Scientific Affiliation, P.O. Box 668, 55 Market St., Ipswich, MA 01938-0668. Phone: (978) 356-5656; FAX: (978) 356-4375; E-mail:; Web site: 

©2008 American Scientific Affiliation (except previously published material). All rights reserved. 

Editors: David Fisher, Margaret Towne
Managing Editor: Lyn Berg