The Book “Scientific Investigation and Catholic Faith” was presented at the UST Chile

December 2018


This work falls within the framework of ICUSTA’s AIRES, the Aquinas Initiative for Religion, Education, and Science

In the context of the work promoted by AIRES, the Aquinas Initiative for Religion, Education, and Science, the book “Investigación científica y Fe católica” (Scientific Investigation and Catholic Faith) was presented. It was published by the Center for Thomistic Studies of the Universidad Santo Tomás in Chile and by RIL Editores. The text, edited by Carlos A. Casanova, gathered in its pages the diverse lectures given at the Seminar on Faith and Science which was held in May of 2016 at the same university.

The book’s chapters are entitled: “Natural Sciences: Obstacle or Opportunity for the Christian Faith,” by Phillipe Quentin; “El surgimiento de la ciencia experimental y la religión” (Religion and the Emergence of Experimental Science), by Carlos A. Casanova; “La confusión epistemológica como principal causa del supuesto conflicto entre ciencia y religión” (The Epistemological Confusion as the Principal Cause of the Supposed Conflict between Science and Religion), by Rafael Vicuña; “The Essence of ´Not Two:´ Evolutionary Biology and the Roman Catholic Tradition,” by Don Frohlich; “La condición epistemológica del ‘darwinismo’: biología, paleontología, paradigmas y religión” (The Epistemological Condition of ‘Darwinism:’ Biology, Paleontology, Paradigms and Religion), by Alejandro Serani Merlo; and “Thomas Aquinas on Creation and Science,” by William E. Carroll.

The presentation of the book was made by Ignacio Silva, Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Oxford and Professor of the Institute of Philosophy at the Universidad Austral in Argentina; and by Alejandro Serani, Medical Doctor from the Universidad de Chile, Doctor of Philosophy from the Universidad de Toulouse, and Director of the Bioethics Center at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.

On that occasion, Ignacio Silva noted that “the cultivation of the philosophy of religion and the study of the relationship between philosophy and science has increased in recent years in Latin America. This book is situated in this line and constitutes a very valuable fruit of cooperation between countries and between philosophers and scientists.”

Moreover, he indicated that the book “is very well written, enjoyable, and makes one angry on more than one occasion because it presents ideas that clash with the normal beliefs regarding the subject of the relationship between science and Faith; but it is very well argued and constitutes a very serious defense of the harmony between scientific investigation and Catholic Faith.

On his part, Alejandro Serani affirmed that “science is perfect knowledge of imperfect reality and Faith is imperfect knowledge of perfect reality. There is harmony between one and the other, but disagreements arise when we take as scientific something that is not or when we take as being of Faith something that is not; when the dominions are usurped, be it in science or in Faith.

Finally, the editor, Carlos A. Casanova, Professor of the UST Chile’s Center for Thomistic Studies, commented that “a response to the presenters had been planned, but the public had an interest in dialogue. And so I opened a space for questions and it proved particularly fruitful because the large audience, especially the students, made numerous and incisive questions both on the history of the relationship between science and religion, which is one of the subject matters covered in the book in a demythologizing way, and on whether there truly is an effective harmony between the two ways of knowledge.