10-February-2007 -- Catholic News Agency |

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Don’t squelch debate on faith and evolution in public schools, says Cardinal Schoenborn

New York, Feb 9, 2007 (CNA).- A prominent cardinal condemned a two-year-old U.S. court decision that bars a Pennsylvania school district from teaching “intelligent design”. Cardinal Christoph Schoenborn of Vienna said in a lecture on Wednesday, sponsored by the Homeland Foundation, that restricting debate about Darwin's theory of evolution amounts to censorship, reported the Associated Press. The Homeland Foundation funds cultural and religious programs.

In 2005, a U.S. federal court ruled that the Dover, Pa., public school district could not teach the concept of “intelligent design” in biology class.

Intelligent design says an intelligent supernatural force is responsible for the emergence of complex life forms. The judge ruled that the theory was creationism in disguise.

According to the AP, the cardinal said the ruling meant that schools would only teach a materialistic, atheistic view of the origin of universe, without considering the idea that God played a role.

“A truly liberal society would at least allow students to hear of the debate,” the cardinal was quoted as saying.

Cardinal Schoenborn, who has spoken often on the topic recently, affirmed that the Catholic Church rejects creationism “The first page of the Bible is not a cosmological treatise about the coming to be of the world in six days,” he was quoted as saying.

He said “the Catholic faith can accept” the possibility that God uses evolution as a tool, but science alone cannot explain the origins of the universe.



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