A response came from Mark Shea:
My bishop is Peter Sartain of Seattle. Catholics are all creationists. However, they are under no obligation to be young earth or six day creationists. You can believe such stuff if you like as far as the Church is concerned. But it’s bad science and you will be living in a delusion and making it impossible to bear witness to those who do know the science. Rome feels no obligation to embrace YEC or six day creationism. At their recent conference on creation and evolution, real scientists, not six day creationists, were invited. Young earth and six day creationism rely on a protestant reading of scripture that is unnecessary for Catholics. Knock yourself pestering my bishop about this.
- Catholics ... are under no obligation to be young earth or six day creationists.
- Six day - granted. More or less at least. Palmarianism - to which I adhered for 14 months - even makes a point of not being six day creationists but one moment creationists. Those are the two patristic options, and both involve pretty clearly being young earth creationists. A clear problem with one moment creationism is that Eve coming from Adam's rib was a Friday, but if Sunday to Friday or Sunday to Saturday were just one moment, it would have been Saturday or Sunday.
- You can believe such stuff if you like as far as the Church is concerned.
- Thank you very much for the clarification. That means your bishop Peter Sartain of Seattle is at least not trying to oblige all his sheep to Old Earth Creationism! However, that did not come through very clearly in the blog post I link to and which I answered.
- But it’s bad science and you will be living in a delusion ...
- Do not agree.
- ... and making it impossible to bear witness to those who do know the science.
- Impossible for myself or for all others? An important difference. If I make it impossible for myself, it is so to speak "my bad". If I make it impossible for you, then you have an interest in suppressing my belief, even if your bishop hasn't.
But first of all, is your Old Earth Creationism really helping you to convince "scientists" (excluding the young earth creationist ones, like Geologist Tasman Walker) and science believers?
Here are two quotes by the scientist - and atheist - Jacques Monod:
If we believe in a Creator—if we feel the need for this belief—it is basically for moral reasons, in order to see a goal for our own lives. And why would God have to have chosen this extremely complex and difficult mechanism when, I would say by definition, he was at liberty to choose other mechanisms, why would he have to start with simple molecules? Why not create man right away, as of course classical religions believed?
If you want to assume that, then I have no dispute with it, except one (which is not a scientific dispute, but a moral one). Namely, selection is the blindest, and most cruel way of evolving new species, and more and more complex and refined organisms … [interviewer:] Cruel? [Monod resumes:] The more cruel because it is a process of elimination, of destruction. The struggle for life and elimination of the weakest is a horrible process, against which our whole modern ethics revolts. An ideal society is a non-selective society, is one where the weak is protected; which is exactly the reverse of the so-called natural law. I am surprised that a Christian would defend the idea that this is the process which God more or less set up in order to have evolution (emphasis added).
Whole interview is readable here:
Creation Ministries International : Jacques Monod and theistic evolution
So, tell me more of how accepting Evolution helps you bear witness with those who "know the science". As if they were, for that matter, the prime target for mission. Lots of Pagans are not Evolutionists. Lots of Evolutionists are Apostates or children of Apostates. From 1520 to 1620, did Catholicism get more converts from Protestantism or from Paganisms?
- Rome feels no obligation to embrace YEC or six day creationism. At their recent conference on creation and evolution, real scientists, not six day creationists, were invited.
- Now, when Nicea was held, Arius was invited and could defend his position. At Ephesus, Nestorius was free to present his views and arguments. Why this wimpiness in "real scientists" to avoid discussion with Y E Creationist scientists? And why is Rome sucking up to that wimpiness? And how come this reminds me that there are Sedevacantists who condemn "Rome" precisely for this kind of thing? Could it be that it strikes me as dishonest and unworthy of Christians? B t w, there are bishops with Apostolic Succession who are not in Communion with Benedict XVI. Who do not quite agree with Perry Lorenzo's first blog post, so to speak. Quite a few of them, when it comes to Sedisvacantists or even, possibly, the four bishops of FSSPX, are at odds with "Rome" for this precise reason, among a few others.
Not inviting any Young Earth Creationists is at least at odds with a point clearly made in Humani Generis. Pius XII wanted debate, not just rolling over and playing dead before Evolutionists. And, if you will listen to Monod, that is exactly how Evolutionist Christians strike at least some Evolution believers.
- Young earth and six day creationism rely on a protestant reading of scripture that is unnecessary for Catholics.
- St Thomas Aquinas - a Protestant? St Augustine (did you ever try reading all of De Genesi ad Literam or were you content with the super known quote?) - a Protestant? Trent condemning Protestants for too much literalism? Whom art thou kidding? Not me. Are you dishonest or just ignorant, that is all I would like to know about this "Protestant bashing" which is really a Catholic bashing.
Inerrancy of all Scripture was affirmed by Trent (it had been denied by Socinianism), by Vatican I, by Pope Leo XIII. In Vatican II this affirmation is incompletely repeated, insofar as Scripture is only directly said to be inerrant about matters of faith and morals or pertaining to salvation of souls, but not repeating the dogma of inerrancy in its totality does not amount to repudiating it.
When CSL in his Reflections on the Psalms (one reason why he should not be canonised, even though I consider him saintly) appeals to Calvin for shedding doubts on historical inerrancy of the book of Jonah. He applies also very disingeniously to St Jerome. I actually wrote an answer to the factoid stating that St Jerome considered Genesis story "mythical":
Creation vs. Evolution : Was St. Jerome Calling Genesis a Myth, and if so in what sense?
But perhaps you think CSL knew better than I what St Jerome meant or perhaps you consider John Calvin a paragon of Roman Catholic Orthodoxy not even remotely connected with Protestantism. And perhaps Trent calling Bucer and Zwingli and Calvin to task about their not believing the clear Biblical statements on the Real Presence a Protestant Council deviating from the Catholic teaching of Zwingli, Bucer and Calvin. If so, I do not agree.
- Knock yourself pestering my bishop about this.
- I do not know if you would call it pestering, I have already "pestered" Vingt-Trois "archbishop of Paris" about what he feels in this issue, throught two diocesan organisations, so that if either omitted forwarding to him other one would forward to him. I do not see how it would qualify, reasonably, as pestering just to send Peter of Seattle the link to this essay.
- the Welborn Protocol: All correspondence is blogable unless you specifically request otherwise.
- Was applied to the letter. Thank you for the correspondence, it fed my site!
- Hans-Georg Lundahl
Sts Carpophor priest and
Abundius deacon, martyrs