Vatican gives nod to Darwin, not Design

January 19, 2006

The official Vatican newspaper has published an article praising as "correct" a recent U.S. court decision that intelligent design is not science.

"If the model proposed by Darwin is not considered sufficient, one should search for another," Fiorenzo Facchini, a professor of evolutionary biology at the University of Bologna, wrote in the Jan. 16-17 edition of L'Osservatore Romano, The New York Times reported Thursday.

"But it is not correct from a methodological point of view to stray from the field of science while pretending to do science," he wrote, calling intelligent design unscientific. "It only creates confusion between the scientific plane and those that are philosophical or religious."

Advocates for teaching evolution hailed the article. "He is emphasizing that there is no need to see a contradiction between Catholic teachings and evolution," Dr. Francisco Ayala, professor of biology at the University of California-Irvine and a former Dominican priest told the Times. "Good for him."

L'Osservatore is the official newspaper of the Vatican and presents the Vatican's views, the Times noted. Not all articles represent official church policy, but it would not be expected to present a view that dissents deeply from church policy.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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