The aim of the conference “Church and Science: Partners for the Common Good” is to foster a constructive dialogue involving the faith community and science community in contemporary society.  Two dimensions of American culture are its keen spiritual intuition on the one hand, and a passionate pursuit of scientific inquiry on the other hand.  Unfortunately many observers perceive that these two domains are always in conflict with one another.  While some conflict is inevitable in any discourse involving distinct disciplines, it is important that the effort is made to build bridges of understanding between the faith and science communities. What is at stake is the common good.

It is crucial that we facilitate dialogue involving seemingly disparate faith and science communities.  Otherwise, we will not be in a position to promote societal well-being. It has been found that many people of faith go to their spiritual leaders—such as pastors—with questions regarding science.  All too often faith-leaders are ill-equipped to address scientific issues.  When the faith-community is uninformed on pressing cultural issues, it negatively impacts the church’s witness in a scientific age.  This conference will assist pastors and their parishioners in becoming more informed on key scientific topics, and their intersection with matters of faith for more effective ministry.

The conference organizers have chosen to highlight the following themes: a keen awareness of the history of faith and science, hermeneutical humility involving biblical interpretation related to scientific questions, scientific method, and the art of pursuing common values shared by the faith and science communities in the midst of tension.  The long term goal of the conference is to foster respectful, informed dialogue between the church and science, and where possible, integration of the two spheres for the sake of the common good.

Church & Science: Partners for the Common Good

April 16th & 23rd at Multnomah University in Portland, Oregon.