The Dilemma Faced By Church-Based Universities.

As time and societal changes march on, it is entertaining to watch who is left in the dust.  To be left in the dust is to cling too long to ideas society at large has left behind.

I’ve never read up on what happened in universities when evolution was replaced by creationism.  There must have been a lot of, “Oh, we always did thing evolution was  OK, we just had a different way of saying it.”

To this day, the Catholic Church has never admitted the Popes before Galileo were wrong in saying the sun revolved around the earth.  It’s position is nonspecific mistakes were made in dealing with the issue, not errors by any Pope.

Just this year, after years of turning them down, our local Concordia College (Lutheran) gave official recognition to the Secular Student Club, which includes atheists.  They were one of the last in their Midwestern group of colleges founded by religions to approve such a group

The same thing is happening with gay students on campuses where the official line of the founder’s religion says being gay is a sin.  To recognize a gay student group would be to say, “We have given official standing to a group on campus who’s entire focus is sin.”

Yet, this is happening.  There are several such student groups in Protestant founded schools and the link discusses their presence in Catholic Universities.

Campuses, like the faith itself, follow the practice of saying no, no, no, then yes.

39 Responses

  1. Wanna B Sure

    To the best of my knowledge, Concordia Moorhead does not require a pledge of allegiance to Christianity of any stripe, and enrollment is available to those of any belief tradition, including non-faith. It is in reality a secular school, with religion subjects available to those who so desire. It is not a seminary. Correct me if I am wrong. I could be, but don’t believe so.

    1. Wanna 2:20 You are right on all counts, but what exactly is “a secular school”? It was one of the last in its group to allow dancing on campus–that in the late 60’s as I recall. When students were forming gay student groups in the 80’s, an official told me Concordia had none. This, even though a Chaplin met regularly with and was a supporter of, gay students. Now, with a new President, it has allowed a secular student group after years of stalling and delaying.

      I’ve been told by students they were attracted to Concordia by attending its language camps. The staff and students there are very liberal. When they then get to the campus they encountered a different climate.

      I would generalize about Concordia it is a fine accredited institution that funcitions as a secular university. It has a long history of being influenced in certain aspects of its policies by a wealthy conservative community of Lutherans.

      1. Wanna B Sure

        They had become pretty well secularized already as far back as 40 yr. ago. What they were practicing was don’t ask-don’t tell before it was invented by the US Govt. As far as the dancing—a pietistic cultural lag from their Scandinavian culture. Sort of like the old; “Sex standing up was forbidden because people may think you are dancing”. Smilie face.

        1. Wanna B Sure

          Jon; Humorously thinking, Maybe you should have hung out with those LCMS kids you mentioned as a child. A beer was OK, dancing was OK, and animal husbandry was an economic undertaking, not romance. Your understanding may not have become so jaded. Jus’ sayin.

          1. Wanna 3:19 “Humorously thinking. Maybe you should have hung out with those (Missouri Synod) kids you mentioned as a child..Your understanding may not have been so jaded. Jus sayin”

            Truth be known I did hang out with them. A couple of them, classmates, remain my closest friends now in old age. We share in common rolling eyes about the way the local Covenant Church was back then.

        2. entech

          Perhaps that is what GB Shaw meant when he spoke of “the vertical expression of a horizontal desire”

  2. StanB

    Jon, do me a favor and actually do some study on the case of Galileo. At the time he proposed a sol-centric solar system almost everybody thought the sun orbited the earth, not for religious reasons alone but because they were in the process of creating the science needed to think differently. One of Galileo’s biggest problems is he couldn’t provide PROOF. What theory he did have had holes in it as seen by other observers at the time. Bishop Copernicus eventually was able to provide both proof and the reasons for the holes in Galileo’s theory. So why SHOULD the church have to apologize for ore Galileo popes?

    Part of Galileo’s problem was he was a jerk besides. When you insult the pope in those days you do it at your own risk. I bet you didnt realize his “imprisonment” was house arrest and he was allowed to have all the visitors he wanted and to continue his work from there.

    I really wish you would do some studying on science and the Catholic Church. I have. I have tried to point out how bigoted you sound when just repeating the untruths others tell you.

    1. StanB

      Goodness Jon, I just checked the Wiki article on Galileo. Even that has a better understanding of the contreversy then you have.

    2. entech

      Stan, perhaps you could defend evolution against the lies being told by some
      untruths is a bit wishy washy.

    3. Stan 3:31 “Jon, do me a favor and actually do some study on the case of Galileo.”

      Actually, I’ve done that–read three books. I am absolutely correct when I write the Catholic Church has never admitted a pope was wrong about the sun circling the earth. The Church did a ten year study in the 80’s. After 10 years of papers, “research” and debate, it could only conclude “mistakes were made”, apologized for sins of the church, etc., but never said the pope was wrong. It cannot, of course, ever say this because it is bound up in ancient myth.

      When you point out Galileo was “only under house arrest”, you sound like a career politican doing spin. He was sentenced to house arrest for LIFE. And, for what? Doing parody about a Pope. That he was a jerk, or perhaps more accurately, very eccentric, is supposed to have justification for a life under house arrest??

      The history of Galileo is a rock solid case that the Catholic Church hirarchy remains nuts. While the norms of that time can be used to explain why he was found guilty of heresy and imprisoned for life, they cannot be used to defend that kind of thinking today.

    1. entech

      Very good.
      Perhaps it will give away some of my own prejudices when I say I expected a creationist site with more ‘something unbelievable’.

    2. Wolfy32

      Now, if we could only find proof the earth is flat… Been searching for years and years… Anyone?

        1. Wolfy32

          Wow… I actually wasted 2 minutes of my life reading the threads… 2 minutes I will never get back!! You owe me the cash equivalent of 2 minutes!!!

          1. Wolfy32 2:43 “I wasted 2 minutes of my life reading the threads.”

            I think anytime one learns that intelligent pull is a valid an explanation as gravity, we’re all the better for it. 🙂

          2. entech

            How many hours are owed to me for looking at creationist websites. At least Landover is a bit of fun, its lies are obvious and for the right reason. The others are deliberate attempts to decieve.

        1. entech 2:23 “Just ask…”

          The site shows us the logic of the anti science argument. The flat earth poster says there is no such thing as “gravity”, it is “intelligent pull”. That is a great case for having both the “gravity theory” (which is just a theory, not a fact) and the “intelligent pull” taught in school to all our children. Why not teach both and let individual people decide?? 🙂

          1. entech

            Don’t forget the stork theory. You could probably make something of that with homophones, but this is a family show 🙂 .

            Anyway homophonia is no joking matter. 🙄

  3. dan

    Creationism versus Evolution:
    If everything came out of extremely dense and hot gas state, how did biological life come into existance? If you think rationally, you’ll see that most life begins to die out after reaching 200 degrees (organisms in the ocean live around hot gasses from volcanos but a billion degrees? I doubt it.). According to Stephen Hawking, the extremely dense and hot gas that created itself from nothingness, was over a billion degrees. How did microbiological organisms survive this intense heat? To just say it was a result of the Big Bang makes no scientific sense. Something had to introduce biological organisms into the vacuum of space once it cooled. Remember, out of nothingness, gas was CREATED which CREATED an explosion. Once it cooled…life began. Would not even an athiest agree with this THEORY?

    1. dan 4:46 “Something had to introduce bilological organisms into the vacum of space once it cooled.”

      I don’t think those who work in this field agree with that.

      1. dan

        All I’m saying is that something had to create the explosion unless you believe that it created itself. In order for it to have created itself, it would have needed to manifest itself out of nothingness. It would have needed to come up with a way to combust (At least 2 different particles from nothing). Surely you agree that if the explosion had never occurred, we would have never existed. There would still be nothingness. Once the explosion happened: silver, gold, rock, iron, water, air, helium ect… were created right?…from nothing? These questions are why so many people choose creationism over the hot gas from nothing theory.

        1. dan 6:21 “…something had to create the explosion unless you believe it created itself.”

          Science has never said it knows for sure where the original universe came from. They may know some day. For now, they can not rule out a supernatural being because they are still in search of answers. But, there is no evidence of a supernatural being so that answer is no better than saying it created itself–there is not evidence of that either.

          The case can be made science is more honest than creationists. Science admits it does not know the answer to everything. The religious creationist claims he knows there was a supreme being when he does not really know this. He merely believes this to be the answer.

          1. entech

            On the same Youtube page is (assuming your browser brings it up the same as mine) there is a video called “Origin of the Universe: The big bang” it is part of a series of lecture from Arizona State university on cosmology, well worth watching, even the first one by a Jesuit called Guy Consalmagno who gives a very good talk about the relationships between the cosmology of a period and its philosophical/religious thinking

            I do wish Krause would stop trying to be a comedian in his lectures, he is not good at it.

    2. entech

      Not quite right Dan. Before the big bang no one knows what there was, whether it was your God or the quantum false vacuum, some form of energy, it certainly was not nothing from which something was created. How would you define nothing, without saying it is the absence of something. In New Guinea they have no concept of nothing (it simply does not exist 🙂 in their world view), to the extent that if you want to say something like “its nothing” in response to someone thanking you it comes out as “em i samting nating”, it is something nothing, it is not possible to have nothing.

      If you want a complete nothing you would not even have a creator, if you insist that there must be creator, an entity necessarily outside of space and time as that entity is the cause of space and time, then you have made your first exception and are beginning the process of explaining everything by speculation on the character and properties of this creator. Space and time began with an event that may have been “the big bang” or the Genesis Story : :And the earth was without form, and void;”. Void is good word with many meanings, genesis puts one of them in perspective for what we are talking about “without form”. Eastern religions talk a lot about the void, coming from and returning to. Quantum theory talks of a false vacuum in which particles pop in and out of existence in the tiniest amount of time, it can happen that one of these particles survives long enough to become the universe, what would cause one of many to survive and become the universe, to take form, is the question, God’s will or some other factor, take your pick.

      Remember, out of nothingness, gas was CREATED which CREATED an explosion. Once it cooled…life began. Would not even an athiest agree with this THEORY?
      This is where you go a long way away from orthodox cosmology.
      Big bang and explosion are just words used to describe a very difficult concept, there really was nothing to bang and nothing in which an explosion could take place. Whatever was the beginning of the universe we know to come into existence was also the beginning of space and time, speculating on one of the particles surviving, there is initially a rapid expansion of space, all the energy of the universe is expanding into that space, energy expanding into an increasing but finite space builds up a pressure that is resolved as heat, the billion degrees you talk about. At these temperatures there is no gas not even plasma. As space expands the temperature drops, there is an essential relationship between pressure, volume and temperature (think of the cylinder in a car as the piston moves up the volume decreases, the pressure increases and as a consequence the temperature increases).
      As the temperature in the early universe drops, atoms can begin to coalesce and combine into molecules, the forming of molecules is a mixture of chance and necessity, when the right atoms are together in the right conditions they must form molecules, chance comes in where we have huge numbers of atoms swirling around and sometimes they will be together in the right conditions. This could explain why as the early universe cooled it was not quite uniform, molecules clumped together to make gas clouds where gravity takes over and they eventually form stars and galaxies, stars burn their inner fuel (hydrogen and Helium to start) and gravity eventually overcomes the pressure of this burning as the fuel gets less and the star collapses creating more heat and in the explosion more complex atoms are formed. The gas released and under gravity again forms more starts, stars with a greater variety of molecules, and so on until we have all the elements.

      A plane t like earth is initially a molten mass and eventually cools down allowing the various elements to combine due to the combination of chance and necessity. Cooling down allows the more complex molecules and chemical combinations to come about. This is pretty much as far as we can speculate with a good degree of certainty, where and how the chemical combinations became self replicating primitive life no one knows, lots of people thinking and working on it but there is little in the way of consensus, probably (maybe, perhaps – I want to be very non-committal) it is the same process of chance and necessity, just as 2 parts hydrogen and one part oxygen in the right conditions “must” become water, so some other process in the right circumstances “must” become organic life.

      Of course, this could be all wrong and the “Creator” created in a week by snapping his/her/its fingers. This brings up two questions:
      Artistic representation has God on a cloud leaning down to touch fingers with Adam, does and immaterial entity, that exists outside of space and time and even reality as we know it, actually have fingers to snap.
      And we can’t leave out the nagging little question raised by every little child at sometime, where did the creator come from?

      1. Josiah

        Nice post, entech. I would like clarify that rather than forming during the final death of a star, most of the elements (all the way up to iron, though only in the largest stars) are formed by the nuclear fusion process taking place in the heart of the star. When the star eventually runs out of elements light enough to burn (hydrogen, helium, carbon, neon, oxygen, and silicon), it will explode and create the elements that are heavier than iron.

        1. entech

          Thank you Josiah, couple of things a bit oversimplified, I tend to be over long and tried to keep it a bit short. There are a few books in my collection and many hours of video from Youtube, it is so good that so many universities put their lectures in the public domain and such things as TED talks exists.

          I mainly wanted to correct the “gas from nothing causing an explosion”, which as they say is so far from reality that it is not even wrong.

  4. Wanna B Sure

    If one considers The “Flat Earthers”, if you will, (I’m not one of them) as two dimensional people; “flat landers” would be wrong in a three dimensional world/universe. There are strong evidences of a 4th dimension, and indeed with quantum physics the possibility of many more since the concept of string theory, “the brain”. Wouldn’t it be funny if some time in the future those other dimensions could include some kind of consciousness, (and what it is) beyond what is today understood in the field of science. The 3 or even 4th dimension people would be scoffed at as much as the flat landers of today. This is not my field, but it does cause one to wonder. Stay tuned, more science to come…with strings attached.

      1. Wanna B Sure

        If those who strongly adhere to the science of today, and reject the possibility of “another life” after this in one of those other possible dimensions, or parallel universes, they would then be called “flat liners”. Just looking at the science. I drive a Buick, not a “Beamer” thank you.

        1. dan

          I never said that I don’t agree that there might be other dimensions. Science has demonstrated how space and time are warped. Gravity has been proven to warp them. Science believes that black holes have such a powerful gravatational effect that they may create worm holes. Warm holes might provide a pathway into another dimension.

    1. entech

      Wanna, some are taking this sought of thing seriously, check out – “Hameroff and Penrose on consciousness”. That is the same Roger Penrose that worked hard with Stephen Hawking years ago.

      As I like to say it would be difficult for religious people if science did find proof of the existence of a supernatural creator. You have to include the speculation that the entity they found was not yours, or indeed, the god of anyone else either.

        1. entech

          Given that quantum entanglement comes into the thinking, that two particles that have a “relationship”, that one “knows” the state of the other. In basic terms this means that if you measure one of the properties of one of the particles the other one will have the complementary property, no matter how far apart the have been moved.

          This is what Einstein objected to in quantum mechanics, the information was transmitted, if you can use that word in the circumstances, at perfect speed, not the speed of light but instantaneously. This is what he called “spooky” action at a distance.

          But I am sure you knew that when you chose that word of your own freewill, or was that choice somehow determined.

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