American Scientific Affiliation &
Canadian Scientific & Christian Affiliation
Volume 52, Number 3 MAY/JUNE 2010
“Science, Faith, and Public Policy” is the theme of our Annual Meeting at the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC, July 30–Aug. 2. Confirmed plenary speakers are: Stanley Bull, Assoc. Director, National Renewable Energy Laboratory; Richard Cizik, Senior Fellow, United Nations Foundation; Vernon Ehlers, Congressman, House Science Committee; Sara Joan Miles, Founding Dean Emerita of Esperanza College, Eastern University; and Jennifer Wiseman, Astronomer and 2010 ASA President. Tentative program tracks are: (1) Biomedical Research and Health Policy, (2) Energy and Environmental Policy, (3) Engineering Policy and Appropriate Technology, (4) Space Policy, (5) Science Education and Policy, (6) New Frontiers in Bioethics, and (7) Panel: Being a Christian in the Workplace.
There will be two outstanding pre-meeting workshops:
1. A Short History of American Religion and Science, taught by Ted Davis, Messiah College and
2. Scripture, Science, and Origins: An Overview, taught by Denis Lamoureux, St. Joseph’s College, University of Alberta.
In addition, Washington, DC, offers outstanding sightseeing and day-trip opportunities. If you wish to take advantage of these, you might plan to stay in the area before and/or after the meeting.
Visit www.asa3.org for updated meeting information and registration materials. We look forward to seeing you there.
At the 176th American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) meeting in San Diego in February, Jennifer Wiseman accepted the position as director of DoSER (Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Religion). The Templeton Foundation will fund the program for four years. Jennifer has also been given the role of Chief Program Scientist at NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope. On top of that, she will be the ASA president this coming year. Randy Isaac says, “She will probably head the list of the most influential women in America! … she gave a superb acceptance speech.” Leslie Goldman, a blog reporter at the DoSER reception, said Jennifer “has her roots in the soil as well as her spirit in the stars.”
Jennifer received her BS in physics from MIT and her PhD in astronomy from Harvard in 1995. She discovered periodic comet 114P/Wiseman-Skiff as an undergraduate assistant in 1987. She has a comet named after her! Currently she is Chief of the ExoPlanets and Stellar Astrophysics Laboratory in the Astrophysics Science Division at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.
The AAAS meeting was most significant for ASA members as Francis Collins was also honored. See the article AAAS Honors Collins below.
Congratulations to both of them!
(Wiseman photo courtesy of Leslie Goldman)
Harry L. (Hal) Poe has been elected to the ASA Council. He is the Charles Colson Professor of Faith and Culture at Union University in Jackson, TN, and has authored more than a dozen books and numerous articles. He received a PhD in education from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Edgar Allan Poe was the cousin of Hal’s great-great grandfather, and Hal is now president of the Poe Museum in Richmond, VA, which hosts many activities such as an annual writer’s conference for high school students, an annual film festival, and many readings. We welcome him to the council and appreciate his leadership so much.
Ehlers Retires from Congress
A former Calvin College physics professor and one of three physicists in the US House of Representatives, Vernon Ehlers is retiring at age 76 after 17 years in Congress. In an article entitled “Ehlers’s Retirement Called ‘Big Loss’ for Science,” the February 19 issue of Science includes tributes to the ASA Fellow from colleagues of both parties, such as, “He was Mr. Science in Congress, and he was my go-to guy whenever I had a question about research or science education.”
The simultaneous retirement of Ehlers (R-MI) and House Science Committee chairman Bart Gordon (D-TN) is being described as “a big, big loss.” An aide to a former chair of the committee describes Ehlers as “thoughtful and independent, … willing to work with anybody who takes these issues seriously.” Another said he “is the kind of member that Congress needs more than ever these days.”
Ehlers hopes to stay involved. The article reports:
Ehlers said he
couldn’t talk yet about his new gig, noting only that “I
won’t be doing it for money.” He also wants to become “an
elder statesman” on behalf of continued federal support for research.
* Walt Hearn
Randall D. Isaac
The ASA Executive Council met at Messiah College on March 27 in a mood considerably brightened by a letter of intent from an anonymous donor to provide a significant contribution to the ASA. The donor promised, and has since delivered, mutual funds worth approximately $100,000 to the ASA Endowment Fund, and a $25,000 designated cash gift to be used specifically by the council for growth in membership and local chapters. In addition, the donor has promised to provide two matching funds. One is a dollar-for-dollar match of all unrestricted donations to ASA’s operating fund between April 1 and June 30, 2010. The second is a 50% subsidy of the first-year dues for new members who join during that same period. This is a tremendous encouragement to all of us as we work to serve our members as Christians in science.
A little financial perspective may help us understand the impact of this gift. Our fiscal year just ended on March 31. Our annual budget, not including the approximately $75,000 cost of the annual meeting, is just under $300,000. Half of the budget pays for the four office staff members in Ipswich. About 20% is for preparing, printing, and mailing the journal and newsletter, and the rest is used for operating expenses such as rent, computing costs, and legal and accounting support. Approximately 45% of the revenue comes from contributions, nearly 40% from dues and subscriptions, and the rest from project overhead and advertising in the journal. This past year, our contributions fell short of our goal by about 15%. Fortunately, our spending was also less than was budgeted so that we were able to close the budget. But we cannot maintain the lower spending rates for long. We need to increase our membership and donation levels to be able to sustain our work in publishing the journal and newsletter, and in organizing our conferences.
While this donation is a tremendous help to us, a one-time gift can be quickly dissipated. It is vital that we spend these funds wisely to strengthen our sustainability for the future. This is why the focus on membership growth is so important. We need approximately 2,000 members as well as about 450 subscribers for our dues, subscriptions, and donations to cover our costs. Currently, we have about 1,600 members and 430 subscribers. A 25% increase in membership would help us greatly to achieve a sustainable organization. After having increased or remained steady in the previous two years, our membership dropped by a little more than 4% this past year.
For this reason, the council spent a significant amount of time discussing not just how to grow our membership but how to meet the needs of today’s generation of graduate students in science. When the ASA was formed nearly 70 years ago, there were few, if any, organizations addressing issues on science and faith. The only means of communication were mailed publications and oral presentations. Today we live in a very different world where communication is predominantly electronic. Many groups and individuals are able to generate and disseminate information. Electronic social networking complements personal interactions to redefine interpersonal relationships. The challenge for a Christian in science is no longer finding material on science and faith, but how to select and identify that which is credible and of high quality.
The council has encouraged me to explore the feasibility of launching a new means of communication that will appeal to the younger generation. This “publication” would be all-electronic, optimized for hand-held devices, and contain a concentration of articles on personal experiences of life as a Christian in science. I expect that I’ll be asking for your help in the future as we seek to define the right material and the right avenue of communication.
We’ll be sharing more information in the future as we work out the details. Above all, we would ask for your prayers as well as your continued support, suggestions, and, if appropriate, your volunteer help.
Welcome, New Members!
Anspach, Joel E –Corrales, NM
Bridges, Rob –Yucaipa, CA
Carrasco, Martin A –South Bend, IN
Chen, Samuel –Waco, TX
Clarke, Bryan G. –Edmonton, AB Canada
Ewert, Winston –Waco, TX
Garte, Seymour –Chevy Chase, MD
Gutierrez Ford, Christina –Chapel Hill, NC
Harris-Love, Deborah S. –Boston, MA
Hazucha, Joy –Edina, MN
Iaia, Gaetano –Naples, Italy
Jang, Allen W. –San Gabriel, CA
Kirbas, Paul J. –Wheaton, IL
Lauffenburger, Douglas A. –Cambridge, MA
Lioy, Daniel T. –Salem, OR
Matsumoto, Eric S. –Azusa, CA
Mitchell, Robinson W. –Bartlett, TN
Montanez, George –Waco, TX
Morris, Matthew R. –Calgary, AB Canada
Nesman, Teresa M. –Tampa, FL
Newton, Susan –Siloam Springs, AR
Pan, Isaiah –Waco, TX
Rampelt, Jason M. –Corapolis, PA
Reus IV, William F. –Somerville, MA
Ripkey, Elizabeth A. –Sugarloaf, FL
Rousseau, William H. –Savannah, GA
Schultz, Jim –Roanoke, TX
Swinsburg, William A. –Grantham, PA
Tan, Kay S. –Philadelphia, PA
Urban Jr., Edward R. –Pottstown, PA
Francisco J. Ayala, a one-time Dominican priest who later became an evolutionary geneticist and molecular biologist, will receive the 2010 Templeton Prize, valued at $1.53 million. Ayala is the Donald Bren Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of California, Irvine. His groundbreaking research into parasitic protozoa may lead to cures for malaria and other diseases. He recently co-authored a paper maintaining that gorillas and chimps may serve as reservoirs for parasites that cause human malaria; thus, even if a vaccine is developed, humans will be vulnerable to re-infection. Ayala was president of AAAS from 1993–1996 and developed DoSER (Dialogue on Science, Ethics and Religion).
In 2002 he received the National Medal for Science, the nation’s highest award for lifetime achievement in scientific research.
The Templeton Prize honors a living person who has made an exceptional contribution affirming life’s spiritual dimension. It was established in 1972 by the late Sir John Templeton to identify individuals who have expanded our vision of human purpose and ultimate reality.
Ayala, a naturalized American citizen, came to the USA in 1961 from Spain to do graduate study. He has repeatedly asserted that both science and faith are damaged when either invades the proper domain of the other, and he calls for mutual respect between the two. He says,
The proper relationship between science and religion can be, for people of faith, mutually motivating and inspiriting … As I see it, scientific knowledge is consistent with a religious belief in God. (Washington Post’s On Faith blog, March 25, 2010)
John M. Templeton Jr., president of the Templeton Foundation, said, “Ayala’s clear voice in matters of science and faith echoes the foundation’s belief that evolution of the mind and truly open-minded inquiry can lead to real spiritual progress in the world.”
Ayala will receive the prize May 5 in a private ceremony at Buckingham Palace. He plans to give the money to charity, probably for education.
The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) awarded the Philip Hauge Abelson Prize to Francis S. Collins, Feb. 22 at the organization’s annual meeting in San Diego. Established in 1985, this prize “recognizes a public servant for sustained exceptional contributions to advancing science, or a scientist whose career has been distinguished both for scientific achievement and for other notable services to the scientific community.” Collins qualifies on both counts. The AAAS press release states:
Francis S. Collins is recognized on the basis of his extraordinary skills as a scientist, as a spokesperson for the ethical and responsible use of science, as a communicator with the public and policymakers, and for his pioneering leadership of major, highly successful federal scientific initiatives.
Early in his career, Collins produced landmark discoveries of genes associated with cystic fibrosis, Huntington’s disease, neurofibromatosis, multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1, and the M4 type of adult acute leukemia. In 1993, he succeeded Nobel laureate James Watson, co-discoverer of the double helical formation of the DNA molecule, as director of the Human Genome Project. Francis was noted for his ability to deliver results ahead of schedule and under budget. He was honored at the White House in June 2000 by President Clinton. President Bush honored him in 2007 with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. In August 2009, he became the 16th director of the National Institutes of Health.
In April, Paul Carr, AF Research Laboratory Emeritus, presented a paper titled “How Did Religion and Science Emerge?” at the European Society for the Study of Science and Theology (ESSSAT) conference at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. The conference theme was “Is Religion Natural?”
Paul believes that religion and science emerged over millions of years from four interdependent, indigenous human capacities: (1) tool-making, (2) symbol recognition and manipulation, (3) empathetic relationships, and (4) spirituality. Our large brains and language co-evolved (Deacon, 1997) and in 30,000 BC, the symbolism of the colorful cave paintings in Southern France must have had religious significance. With the invention of agriculture, primitive burial sites evolved into the pyramids, which were aligned with the heavens, symbolically and physically. Advances in tool-making technology enabled their construction. The mathematical beauty of modern astronomy and science emerged from the mystical beauty of these ancient megaliths.
The Sugar Grove, IL, campus of Waubonsee College showed the intelligent design DVD “Unlocking the Mystery of Life” Feb. 18. Paul Nelson spoke in support of the film’s theistic interpretation of scientific data, and University of Wisconsin anatomy prof. Andrew J. Petto presented a naturalistic interpretation.
Petto began by saying Darwin had died in 1882 and “hasn’t written much since.” Therefore, the film “beat up on Darwin for what he didn’t know,” and many of the issues are handled by later developments. Nelson had said in the DVD, “Science is the search for truth” and that science is inherently limited in what it can say and therefore needs philosophy and theology to achieve a full understanding. Petto countered that science is “the search for what works,” not for ultimate truth.
Petto charged that an acceptance of irreducible complexity stops science. Nelson said his beliefs had not stopped his scientific interest and that he wanted science opened to wider considerations.
Defending his point that natural processes behave in ways yet to be understood, Petto remarked that bacteria “behave in funky ways, like bumping into someone in the cafeteria and coming away with red hair.”
Threshold of Evidence
A student asked, “You try to disprove evolution, but how do you prove God?” Nelson answered by referring to Jodi Foster’s character in the film Contact, hearing a signal spelling out pi to multiple decimal places. “In our experience, mathematical formulae are produced by intelligent beings. You can’t get to Alpha Centauri to meet the source, but would you or would you not be convinced that such a signal had been sent by an intelligent being?” Nelson asked the student whether she had an evidential threshold, or whether she would not accept the existence of an intelligence, no matter how strong the evidence. The student said that signal would not convince her, but Petto said such a signal would be persuasive, implying that proofs of ID have not met that threshold.
An audience member objected that articles advocating ID have not been published in peer-reviewed journals. Nelson replied that one editor had admitted that at least one such article was not accepted because it did not “advance the evolutionary paradigm.”
Knapp is a former science textbook writer for Silver Burdett and a former professor of English at SUNY-Oswego. One reviewer hails this volume as “the first book I’ve ever seen that truly tackles the concept of life in other worlds from within a Christian worldview. If there were aliens elsewhere, how would they be covered by our theology in light of the fact that it was here on Earth that Jesus lived?” The plot unfolds amidst mathematical calculations, speculative discussions, and biblical interpretation of a variety of issues. Robert Newman endorses it. The book is available through www.Amazon.com or www.johnknapp2.com.
Following Francis’ introductory chapter, N. T. Wright states “the modern case” for God, focusing on the innate human sense of justice, a desire for spirituality, and the frequent postmodern assertion that something can be “true for you but not for me.” Then follows a section of “Classic Arguments for Faith and Reason” by Plato, Augustine of Hippo, Anselm of Canterbury, Thomas Aquinas, John Locke, and Blaise Pascal. The “Meaning of Truth” segment features Os Guinness, Madeline L’Engle, and Dorothy Sayers. John Stott, David Elton Trueblood, and Keith Ward pick up the thread with “Loving God with All Your Mind.” Art Lindsley, Desmond Tutu, and Elie Wiesel tackle “Faith and the Problem of Evil and Suffering.” Tim Keller and Martin Luther King Jr. discuss “Faith and the Cry for Justice.”
Paul Brand, Annie Dillard, and John Polkinghorne elucidate “The Harmony of Science and Faith.” The “Miracles, Longing, and Mysticism” section features C. S. Lewis, Alister McGrath, and Thomas Merton. Selections from Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Viktor Frankl, and Mother Teresa highlight “Love and Forgiveness as Pointers to God.” Mahatma Gandhi and the Dalai Lama present “Voices from the East.” The final section features G. K. Chesterton, Hans Kung, Alvin Plantinga, and Antony Flew examining “The Irrationality of Atheism.”
Some publicity says this book contains the writings that influenced Collins during his 2-year journey from atheism to faith. Collins clarifies, “In reality, the only author in this collection that influenced my own conversion was C. S. Lewis. The others I learned to admire much later—some of them only in the last year while preparing this book.”
Acknowledging that “absolute proof of God’s existence is not going to be available in this life,” Collins adds, “But that doesn’t mean deeply rational arguments for faith are not available for inspection and debate by interested believers, seekers, and skeptics.”
Owen Gingerich, Harvard/Smithsonian astrophysicist, appeared on PBS NOVA recently. The program was “The Pluto Files,” featuring many scholars’ opinions about Pluto. For 76 years it was declared a planet, but recently it was voted out. This program was a summary of the subject: What Is a Planet?
On March 17, the Smithsonian Museum marked its 100th anniversary on the National Mall with the opening of a new exhibit, “The David H. Koch Hall of Human Origins.” This tells the story of how we changed over six million years in response to an evolving world, how our ancestors survived environmental changes, adapting and developing traits that make us who we are. ASA Executive Director Randy Isaac has been serving on the Broader Social Impacts Committee that helped develop FAQ’s relating to religious and cultural views of human evolution. The committee held a public Q&A as part of the opening activities.
This exhibit is the result of decades of research by Smithsonian scientists and the international collaboration of more than 60 research and educational organizations and over 100 researchers from around the world. The website says visitors will see archaeological field sites at interactive snapshots in time and examine over 75 cast reproductions of skulls from around the world. They will engage with an interactive family tree showing 6 million years of evolutionary evidence, and address pressing questions and issues surrounding climate change and humans’ impact on the earth. See http://humanorigins.si.edu/ exhibit or http://humanorigins.si.edu/about/bsic/
Hopefully, many of us can visit it when we are in DC at our Annual Meeting. We thank Randy for his leadership in this significant exhibit.
On March 2, Guy Consolmagno, Director of Public Relations for the Vatican Observatory, gave two lectures at Baylor University. They were jointly sponsored by Baylor’s Institute for Faith and Learning, the Baylor Society for the Conversations in Religion, Ethics, and Science, the Baylor Student Branch of the ASA, and the Baylor Dept. of Physics.
The lectures were titled “Meteorites, Asteroids, and the Stratigraphy of the Early Solar System,” and “The Virtuous Astronomer: How the Work of Science Is Shaped by the Virtues of Faith, Hope, and Love.”
Seventy-eight members of Grace Church of Edina (MN) spent ten days helping sister churches in Kenya. They provided carpentry (including donating power equipment), pastoral development, medical, ministry to women and children, door-to-door evangelism, and music teams to a church in Athi River, a region east of Nairobi, and another in the Kwangare slum. Joy Hazucha (Dave Fisher’s daughter, pronounced ha-ZOO-kuh) and her son Stephen participated in the music and drama portions, along with world champion unicyclist Dustin Kelm. They gave presentations at seven schools, each with audiences of 200 to 1,500; two factories; and a prison. In addition to the vocational training and other tangible provisions, several in the audiences prayed to receive Christ.
Martin Price says he had a “mid-life crisis” in his mid-twenties. Halfway through his doctoral studies in biochemistry, he visited missionaries in a developing country. As a result of the poverty he saw, he spent the next twelve years seeking how to redirect his career toward using science to help the poor. Twelve years later, in 1981, he became the founding CEO of the Educational Concerns for Hunger Organization (ECHO) in Florida.
Because the extremely poor may earn no more than $100 a year, making use of the results of any research efforts must cost the recipient little or nothing. By using ingenuity and indigenous materials, that goal is achievable in many situations—such as the multiple uses of coconuts that we reported in previous newsletters.
Decades of experience have given Martin a broad knowledge of research opportunities that have been done successfully, suggestions for additional ones, and ideas for how they can be undertaken even with minimal expenditure. He emphasizes especially research ideas that may be ideally suited to private colleges, where research money may be scarce, but well-equipped laboratories and motivated faculty and students make a range of applied research possible. While most engineering schools have options for design work that would help the poor, pro-poor research in chemistry and biology departments is rare. For ideas about how your department might begin such a program, including a few specific research opportunities, see the ECHO Technical Note “Using Science to Help the Poor: low-budget research ideas” at http://echonet.org/content/agriculturalResources/611. He also recommends Trees for Life (www.TFLJournal.org), Engineering Ministries International (http://emiworld.org), and the International Journal for Service Learning in Engineering (www.ijsle.org).
to report what you’re doing. Please send the information to either editor, using the contact information in the Masthead.
In April, William Dembski was a keynote speaker for the International Society for Christian Apologetics at the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, TX. He said people commonly criticize intelligent design (ID) for being a form of magic—a designing intelligence, they think, just magically causes things to materialize. He countered that ID is, in biology, about tracking the information necessary to build organisms. Life requires an enormous amount of information, and from where does it derive? Evolutionists claim that nature can generate it from scratch. But nature obeys a conservation of information principle that effectively prevents it from generating such information. His talk described the cutting-edge work from Robert Marks’s Evolutionary Informatics Lab (www. evoinfo.org), that shows an information source—a creative intelligence—is needed to explain life. Theologically, such a creative intelligence points to the Logos of creation. Bill’s talk related the science of ID to the theology of creation.
Oscar Gonzalez, from Lima, Peru, has been studying at the University of Florida since last August, working on a PhD in interdisciplinary ecology, studying the effects of climate change in the bird community in the tropical Andes. He says, “I also want to teach the Christian communities in the Andean rainforest that God wants us to take care of the land; so I expect that my field trips will also be mission trips.” Being a biologist specializing in ornithology, Oscar has studied bird distribution and species in Peru, Chile, and the USA. He has worked with churches in Peru on environmental awareness and says, “I thank God for this opportunity. I want to train myself to be a better researcher and come back and help to conserve God’s creation in Peru.” He recently gave a presentation titled “Conservation and Religion” at the University of Florida conservation conference.
Oscar says Peru is a megadiverse country but also part of the underdeveloped world. Poverty forces people to overexploit natural resources, causing land damage and species extinction. Oscar feels that religious communities could be active in conservation, so he has developed an approach that allows dialogue and cooperation with governmental agencies or NGOs that work in conser-vation. He has formed teams of Christian environmentalists who teach biblical stewardship as a way to show love to God and their neighbor.
Oscar and his wife, Marlene, have met Allyn Kyes (and his wife, Traci) who is the InterVarsity leader at the University of Florida. The Kyeses work mainly with graduate students, and no doubt Oscar will contribute a lot to that ministry while he is there.
Missiologist Ray Tallman said Winter “was perhaps the most influential person in missions in the last 50 years and has influenced missions globally more than anyone I can think of.” In 2005 Time magazine named him one of America’s most influential evangelicals.
He spoke of himself as a “commuter” on the way to heaven. He developed that theme in a “Commuter’s Hymn” that he wrote in 1990, part of which reads:
“Adoration to you, Oh Lord!
One foot already on the golden pavement,
elbow brushing on the jasper wall,
the climbing way already thick with stars,
these aging legs that stumble in the rocky world
already saunter in the holy courts.
Glory to you, Oh Lord!”
In addition to responsibilities as deacon and elder, he was involved with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, Rockdale (GA) County Historical Society, Asheville-Buncombe County Christian Ministries, and the Elachee Science Center. He sang tenor in the Raleigh Oratorio Society, numerous church choirs, and the Barbershoppers, as well as playing violin and viola in string quartets.
The St. John’s Bible is being written by calligraphers on vellum with quill pens. It was started on Ash Wednesday, March 8, 2002, and they hope to finish it within the next year. Parts of it will be on display in the following areas:
Beginning in September, the new Center for Nature and Christian Spirituality will offer four to eight young adults (ages 22–30), who have a passion for nature, an eleven-month apprenticeship. It is sponsored by San Francisco Theological Seminary’s (SFTS) Christian Spirituality program, in partnership with Westminster Woods Presbyterian Camp and Conference Center. Participants will help with ecological projects such as restoring native habitats and developing a community garden. SFTS is at 2 Kensington Rd., San Anselmo, CA 94960. Presbyterians Today (March 2010): 33.
The Evangelical Environmental Network is organizing the first Creation Care Walk (CCW) from May 8–25. A group of people will walk from Ansted, WV, to Washington, DC. Each day they will walk 15–20 miles as they tell the news of Jesus and his care for creation, “especially how the least of God’s children are in greater risk because of poor creation stewardship.” Local churches along the route will provide hospitality as the walkers stop and share insights into creation care. The CCW ends on May 25, the National Day of Prayer for Creation Care. For more information or to join the CCW, contact Lauren@creationcare.org.
Celebrating 40 years of membership
Ronald K. Blatchley
Frederick P. Brooks Jr.
Curtis K. Deckert
David R. Helland
Ann H. Hunt
David C. Look
Stephen A. MacDonald
Philip M. Ogden
Clifton J. Orlebeke
Harold J. Reed
Robert T. Voss
Present to Aug. 1. The Saint Louis Science Center, St. Louis, MO, has an exhibit on Charles Darwin which is free to all visitors. This was organized by the American Museum of Natural History in collaboration with other institutions including the Natural History Museum in London.
May 6–7. “Spirituality: The Invisible Ingredient in Health and Healing,” Providence Health Care of Vancouver, BC. Coast Plaza Hotel. Information at www.hclabc.bc.ca/events/providence-health-care-spirituality-the-invisible-ingredient-health-and-healing.
May 8. Reasons to Believe Chicago chapter, Wheaton, IL. Information at Chicago@reasons.org.
June 2–4. The 2010 Commission on Technology Conference sponsored by the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities, Bethel University, St. Paul, MN. For details call (202) 546-8713.
June 16–18. Third Annual Meeting of the Society for Spirituality, Theology and Health, R. David Thomas Executive Conference Center at Duke U., Durham, NC. Preconference presentations on June 15. Details at www.societysth.org or call (919) 660-7556.
July 6–17. International Academy of Apologetics, Evangelism & Human Rights, Strasbourg, France. A unique opportunity to defend historic biblical faith in an increasingly secular age devoid of a solid basis for human rights. Details at www.apologeticsacademy.eu.
July 7–11. “God and Physics” and celebration of John Polkinghorne’s 80th birthday. Oxford, UK. Sponsored by the Ian Ramsey Centre and the International Society for Science and Religion. Robert J. Russell will be among the speakers. Details at http://users.ox.ac.uk/~theo0038/Conferenceinfo/General.html. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
July 15–17. “Christ, Culture & the Academy,” Christian worldview conference with a global vision, Kansas City, MO. Co-sponsored by International Institute for Christian Studies and Christian Studies International of Canada. Details at www.iics.com/conference.html.
July 30–Aug. 2. ASA Annual Meeting. “Science, Faith and Public Policy,” Catholic U. of America, Washington, DC. Details at www.asa3.org
Aug. 5–8. “The Idea of a University: From John Henry Newman to the Multiversity and Beyond.” Symposium sponsored by the Institute for Interdisciplinary Research led by Oskar Gruenwald, Hilton Hotel, Pasadena, CA. www.JIS3.org/symposium2010.htm
Sept. 20–Oct. 2. Biblical Archaeology Society tour: “Legendary Turkey: Following in the Footsteps of Paul.” Information at www.bib-arch.org/travel-study/turkey2010.asp or call 1-800-221-4644, ext. 208.
Oct. 21–Nov. 5. Biblical Archaeology Society tour “From Petra to Palmyra: Visiting Syria, Antioch and Jordan.” Where Paul traveled in Turkey. Information at www.bib-arch.org/travel-study/jordan2010.asp.
Oct. 26–28. “How Science Supports Christianity and Christianity Explains Science,” a symposium for pastors, Christian leaders and scientists, Austin, TX. Contact Scott Robinson for details at email@example.com Many ASAers will be presenters.
Nov. 19–21. Bible and Archaeology Fest XIII, Atlanta, GA. Information at www.bib-arch.org/travel-study/seminars.asp
Harvard Divinity School invites applications for a junior, tenure-track appointment in science and religion which will begin in September 2011. The professor will advance research and thinking on the interrelations of contemporary science and religion. Applicants must hold a doctoral degree and be able to apply their particular research to critical reflection on current debates about science, religion, and their relations. Letters of nomination are welcome. Applications should include a curriculum vitae, a writing sample, and three letters of recommendation. They can be sent to: Watson Search Committee, Matthew B. Turner, Harvard Divinity School, 45 Francis Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138. Review of applications begins Aug. 15, 2010. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
July 30–August 2, 2010
The Catholic University of America
29–August 1, 2011
North Central College
Jointly hosted by North Central and Wheaton Colleges
F. Alton Everest was the last surviving founder of the ASA. Following his passing in 2005 at age 95, his summary of highlights of the ASA’s history from its founding in 1941 and its first Annual Meeting in 1946 through 1986 has been published as The American Scientific Affiliation: Its Growth and Early Development (ASA Press, 2010).
The “development” includes numerical growth of membership from 73 at the first meeting to nearly 2,000 today, and also the maturing of understanding various issues. The book covers various facets and outreaches of the Affiliation, including its commissions, local sections, and publications. It also gives insights into relationships with other Christian organizations, including the Canadian Scientific and Christian Association, the Creation Research Society, and the Evangelical Theological Society.
Everest provides details of the first several Annual Meetings (originally called “conventions”), including photos of participants. Many of them included field trips to places like the LaBrea Tar Pits and the Mt. Palomar observatory.
Regarding the ASA “position,” chapter 6 clarifies, “The ASA was conceived as a forum concerned with the search for truth and not as a society dedicated to the spreading of certain scriptural or scientific interpretations.” The May 1970 revised constitution summarizes, “To investigate any area relating Christian faith and science.” The Affiliation was not involved in the California Textbook Controversy, described as “the most important confrontation between science and Christianity since the Scopes trial,” but individual members Vernon Grose, Richard Bube, and Robert Fischer helped the litigants to provide balance.
Appendices include a list of colleges hosting the Annual Meetings from 1946 through 1985, analyses of how frequently various topics have been covered, and classic articles that have appeared in magazines ranging from Time to Evangelical Newsletter.
The Nov/Dec 2005 issue of the Newsletter tells more about Everest and his personal impact on the ASA. We are grateful for the extraordinary job he did in providing this volume.
Limited Time Discount
It can be purchased for $14.95 + p/h through June 30, 2010, from www.asa3online.org/estore.php.
From April 1 to June 30, 2010, all unrestricted donations to the ASA operating fund will be matched dollar for dollar. Donate at www.asa3.org or send a check in US funds to ASA, PO Box 668, Ipswich, MA 01938.
As a newsletter, this publication presents news spanning a spectrum of activities, reports, and publications in order to keep readers abreast of a variety of events and views. Just as newspapers report statements made by people of various viewpoints and opinions without endorsing them, inclusion in this newsletter does not constitute or imply official ASA endorsement.
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©2010 American Scientific Affiliation (except previously published material). All rights reserved.
Editors: David Fisher, Margaret Towne
Managing Editor: Lyn Berg