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Do science and religion conflict? It’s all how you ‘see’ it beliefs conflicted with science.

ost Americans see a conflict between the findings of sci- ence and the teachings of

religion, but “see” is the operative word in a Pew Research Center report issued in October. Examin- ing perceptions leads to some unex- pected findings. While 59 percent of U.S. adults

say they saw science and religion in conflict, that drops to 30 percent when people are asked about their religious beliefs. It turns out that the most highly religious were least likely to see conflict. And those who said they saw the most con- flict between the two worldviews in society personally claimed no reli- gious brand (the “nones”), accord- ing to the report. “Our perceptions of others are

often different from our percep- tions of ourselves and this plays out here. It’s the most striking finding,” said Cary Funk, associate director of research and co-author of the report. The report is an analysis of sev-

eral surveys but chiefly relies on one from 2014 of 2,002 U.S. adults conducted in collaboration with the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In that survey: • 40 percent of evangelical Protes- tants said their personal religious

Calling ‘racism’ a sin

In an effort to continue understand- ing the complexity and implications of racism, ELCA Presiding Bishop Elizabeth A. Eaton will be featured in a live webcast Jan. 14, at 8 p.m. (CDT). William B. Horne II, an ELCA member from Clearwater, Fla., will serve as host. Eaton, Horne and others will have an on-camera con- versation about the racial disparity in the criminal justice system and the faith community’s response. This is


• 50 percent of highly religious adults (they attend religious ser- vices at least weekly) saw science and religion often in conflict.

• 76 percent of religiously unaffili- ated said they saw such conflict in society. But when asked about their personal beliefs, just 16 percent saw such conflict. The analysis looked at 20 science

issues and found that on most— including climate change, geneti- cally modified foods and space exploration—religious differences were part of a matrix of influences that include age, gender, education, political affiliation and ideology. Funk said the analysis found

“only a handful of areas where peo- ple’s religious beliefs and practices have a strong connection to their views about science.” The hot topics were views on the

creation of the universe, on evolu- tion and on whether religious con- gregations should take positions in debates over public policies on scientific issues. Overall, 50 percent said congregations should express their views on policy decisions about scientific issues and 46 per- cent said they should not. Roman Catholics were the most

divided, with 49 percent saying churches should not express their

Eaton’s second national webcast on the topic of racism.

Racism on campus

Lutheran Campus Ministry pro- grams are uniquely positioned to cre- ate and hold space for hard, impor- tant conversations like confronting racism, said Kate Reuer Welton, campus pastor at the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities. Welton has met with students, faculty and staff to develop a two-tiered strategy for

views and 45 percent calling for churches to speak up, but the sur- vey depended on analysis prior to Pope Francis issuing his document on climate change. About 2 in 3 white evangelicals (69 percent) and black Protestants (66 percent) sup- ported churches’ expressing views. But most of those with no religious affiliation (66 percent) were firmly against it. On evolution, 31 per- cent of U.S. adults said humans and other living things “have existed in their present form since the begin- ning of time.” Most (65 percent overall) said “humans and other liv- ing things have evolved over time.” This includes: • 86 percent of the religiously unaffiliated.

• 73 percent of non-Hispanic white Roman Catholics and 59 percent of Hispanic Roman Catholics.

• 71 percent of white mainline Protestants.

• 49 percent of black Protestants. • 36 percent of white evangelicals. Americans did come together on

one issue—strong public support for government investment in sci- ence. Overall, 71 percent of adults said government investment in basic science research “pays off in the long run,” while 24 percent said it isn’t worth it.

addressing racism. One focuses on building relationships and commu- nity, and the other on internal ini- tiatives that include Bible study and preaching about race and racism. If students have a theological ground- ing of “ ‘our call to stand on the mar- gins,’ then we will be facing a much brighter future,” she said.

LWF to South Korea

Munib A. Younan, president of the Lutheran World Federation and

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