I could use some help


#1

Hi guy’s my name is Greg Schmidt and well I’m having a problem as of now. I am now in high school and I am having a problem with my beliefs. I go to church every Saturday night at 5 at my local parish, but I took biology, and I learned about Darwins theory, since then I’m having some problems with what to believe in. I believe in God but at the same time I’m having some doubts with no evidence. I don’t know what to do, it would be nice to get some help.


#2

I’d like to answer that, but don’t think I could do so adequately. I’ll leave that to those who know more about this. I’ve always been kind of dumb in science.


#3

Greg, are you having difficulty in any one area in particular, or “faith vs. science” in general? JCM


#4

Hi Greg,

I went to the Catholic Answers Home page and typed “Darwin” into the search block.

Over the years, Catholic Answers and This Rock magazine have written a lot about Darwin and evolution.

Click here and browse around to find something that might of help to your specific question. Feel free, also, to do your own searches.

There is a wealth of good solid information on CA … glad you thought to inquire here.

google.com/cse?cx=008187825485874300314%3A1bfkl0u3vji&ie=UTF-8&q=Darwin&sa=Search


#5

I have studied Chemistry, bioligy, astrology, physics and evolution (genetics), but it never made me doubt God at all? Please tell us what is wrong. :heaven:

xxx zundrah (jennifer) xxx


#6

Hi Greg,

I believe in God but at the same time I’m having some doubts with no evidence. I don’t know what to do, it would be nice to get some help.

Definitely do the reading, but remember there is nothing inherent in evolutionary theory that would render God non-existent. Genesis’ 6 days need not be taken literally. Evolution and theism are compatible.

But aside from that, why do you believe? Do you need proof? The Scriptures say that those who would come to God must first believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. Faith is first, not signs. Gifts of consolation (by way of evidence) are not the Giver of consolations. If you could prove God, what kind of God could you prove? You are in high school, and we are only men, any God we could “prove” would have to necessarily be of our own making. God must prove Himself. Look to Jesus Christ for God’s revelation of Himself. The Mystery of God’s existence is in His Incarnation and His Passion and Resurrection. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be. World without end, Amen.

Still, do the reading. Read both sides and read what both sides have to say about both sides. Don’t let rhetorical flash impress you one way or the other. Lastly, i’d advise you to ask God for faith. It is okay to ask Him to gift us with more faith and more love when we are lacking. He gives these good gifts to us. And, in time, that will one day be all the proof you will need.

All my best . . .


#7

hi greg, how are you?

im warpspeedpetey, im 36, ive spent more than 7 years total in various universities so far…and i still have doubts.

as we process new information from different sources, in your case school, we naturally want to fit that into our rational view of the world, we want things to make sense. its entirely natural and it doesnt mean that you are a bad Catholic or lacking in faith. it means that you are human, like all of us.:slight_smile:

as to evolution, lets simply assume its true. why not?

you may be thinking "what the heck is he talking about?, the bible clearly contradicts evolution, we were made in 6 days!’

lets think about what Scripture is.

its a series of books written by men as inspired by the Holy Spirit, they wrote according to their understanding of the world, thousands of years before darwin ever mentioned evolution. if they had written those same books today, the creation story might well be the big bang and evolution. men in those days however had no such way of describing the creation in scientific terms. they had no concept of rigourous scientific investigation, so they spoke in the terms they understood.

you may be aware of intelligent design and creationist movements that attempt to combat the percieved threat some believe evolution poses to religion. such people are taking the bible entirely literally, obviously it was not meant to be taken that way. for us as Catholics there is no difference between true science and true faith.

so we are allowed to agree with both Catholicism and evolution, we arent protestants after all:)

im sure that you have many more questions, feel free to ask here or to private message me i have been where you are, and i know how difficult it was for me so i im happy to help.


#8

Hi Greg, if it helps you, you wouldn’t be going against Church teachings by believing that God made evolution and that He ‘evolved’ our bodies and then gave us souls.

I personally don’t agree with macroevolution… but I think it’s fine to agree with it if you believe it happened by design and not randomly. But I think that scientists have drawn some incorrect conclusions from the evidence.

What in particular are you struggling with?

Catholicism teaches that reason, science, and faith, aren’t opposed to one another. They can help each other. But there are some things that science can’t explain and reason can’t grasp, and only faith can.

btw, I’m a science student at university, I’ve taken biology, chemistry, psychology, etc…there are many scientists out there who are Christians :slight_smile: many of the best minds ever were believers, not atheists. Even Einstein wasn’t an atheist. Keep that in mind :slight_smile: some people make it seem that atheism is the only ‘logical’ position there is, but it’s not true, it’s actually pretty illogical.

If you’re struggling with believing in God’s existence…have you ever read CS Lewis’ “Mere Christianity”?

God bless :slight_smile:


#9

Hi Greg, et al

As a geologist I have had to wrestle with many questions regarding origins etc. There is no inherent conflict between science and faith!

The differences come from trying to use wrong methods to answer particular questions.

Faith and revealed truth deal with Why and Who questions. Science and technology deal with How and What. The Pope has drawn attention to this in Caritas in Veretate, Chapter 6, § 70. He warns us against making technology seem all powerful and that it can “…hold(s) us back from encountering being and truth”.

Grace and peace be with you, and don’t get hung up on using wrong methods to answer the question being asked.


#10

Hi Greg,

Think about what a “day” is. God made the universe in six days.

For us, it is 24 revolutions of the hour hand … or one spin of the earth … or we can use some definition of the performance of the atomic clock.

But … before any of these man-made definitions existed … what was a “day”?

[Add to the question, the fact that the Old Testament was written in Hebrew … and words that we use may not be the exact translation of the Hebrew words … there may not BE an exact translation. And that get us into a whole 'nuther field of study … Hebrew, Greek, Latin and how one translates ideas from one language and one culture to another. Very difficult. Some years ago, I read work by St. John of the Cross. And next to the original Spanish, there were five different English translations … and they were all different! Most folks had focused on one particular translation, but if you looked back at the original Spanish … it was clear that there were clear “departures” from the intent/wording of the original author.]


Consider what we mean by infinity. There is mathematical infinity … numbers … time and distance … but there is also God’s Infinity … God is Infinite … He can do anything … and make anything from nothing. Pure and instantaneous willpower … AND God has Infinite Creativity [along with Infinite Love (however love is defined … I like to use the word “help” as a partial incomplete definition of love). And Infinite Dimensions … you and I have three or four dimensions … but how do we define and explain and understand Infinite Dimensions? Sci-Fi writers have attempted to explain new / other dimensions but that is still using three dimensional language to explain other dimensions.

God’s Infinite Creativity can sometimes be studied by looking at strange natural phenomena … how the the planet Earth get formed? What is in the Earth’s core? How did that happen? Why are some of Saturn’s rings braided? How did the platypus come about?

Why are there gaps in the visible spectrum of the universe? But when we add infrared and ultraviolet and other spectra … they fill in. Why is that?

What is “dark matter”? Why is it that brilliant astronomers have added up all the mass of the universe and come up with numbers so radically different that about 85% of the mass of the universe cannot be accounted for … so they call the difference “dark matter” … utterly unexplainable.

Suppose you and I have an IQ of 100 … and Bill Gates has an IQ of 200 … and Albert Einstein had an IQ of 300 … what is God’s IQ? … Infinity.

How can people with such limited IQ’s … 100 or 200 or 300 comprehend the unlimited intelligence of infinity? Or, perhaps more correctly … the Unlimited Intelligence of Infinity.

Take a look at the Periodic Table of Elements. The best minds collected everything they could about the physical universe and attempted to organize it. Brilliant work. But those brilliant scientists didn’t invent the elements … God did. Studying the Periodic Table gives us some insight into the Mind of God. He created all those elements for us to use and to think about.

Pick any of the atoms … there is a core … a very tiny cluster of neutrons and protons. Surrounded by a statistical cloud of electrical charges in “orbits” … [electrons]. The rest is EMPTY SPACE. You and I are made up of atoms … but 99.99999999% of our atoms are empty space. Electrical charges and empty space.

Everything that you and I perceive is empty space and a few electrical charges. And we can’t explain any of it. And God created all of it.

Add to that the “non-things” … our minds and our free will … and God created all of that as well and integrated it …

God created our “psychology” and He created “gravity” … and we can scarcely understand any of it and can explain almost none of it.

And God created all of it.

Sometimes when I pray the Rosary, I start … “I believe in God the Father Almighty, Creator of Heaven and Earth …” … and then I stop. I get stuck on how God created “Heaven and Earth” … and my mind just blows.


#11

I wouldn’t worry about it…a theory is just that -a theory. What makes this so interesting is that we don’t know and we probably never will in this lifetime. But at the same it is a challenge and that’s what pulls us to try to find answers, all of us are so intrigued by mysteries.


#12

A great book on the subject is Dawkins God, by Alister McGrath. He’s a former athiest, his book answers so amny questions about evolution and faith and science.

John Polkinghorn is another author that has written a lot about the subject but start with Mcgrath.


#13

Hi Greg,

Your original post was actually quite excellent.

Where to go for answers?

Today at Mass, the homily was about John 6.

Probably in my lifetime, John 6 was only mentioned four times during a homily. Yet, it is the absolute basis for all of Christianity … and especially Catholicism.

Find a bible and read John 6 … especially verses 50-70.


#14

The Bible actually supports the theory of evolution. Remember, in Genesis 1 it says, “The land created the animals according to their kinds.” Evolution explains that passage quite nicely. Also, humanity was only created on the 6th day, so we couldn’t physically have witnessed all the rest. To know about all the preceeding days, we would have to have been told about them by God. God often speaks in symbolic language, especially when it comes to numbers. The number of times the number “7” is used in the Book of Revelation!!! :eek: :smiley: Since we know the days of creation have to have been revealed by God rather than through human witnessing, it is perfectly reasonable to suppose it was revealed in a symbolic dream or vision.

This actually makes really good sense out of some of the passages in Genesis that might otherwise be confusing. For instance, Genesis supports the Theory of Evolution’s claim that life started in the seas. Genesis also relates that the first creatures were sea creatures, that these were made first and then the land animals. It also presents the creation of humans last. The Theory of Evolution confirms that we are the “new kids on the block.” Also, and most importantly, as I already pointed out, Genesis says that the land, or what we might call “the environment,” created the animals according to their kinds.


#15

Dinesh D’Souza is a Catholic who has written many good articles on the faith. This is a brief article that speaks of the reason for Darwin’s anti-Christian attitudes and how many of his peers took exception to his conclusions regarding the faith.

christianitytoday.com/ct/2009/january/24.67.html

From my standpoint, the theory of evolution explains the unfolding and development of God’s creation. It does not address the creation process itself.

God bless,
Dan


#16

Hey There Greg,

Just wanted to let you know that I had similar problems. I go to Catholic school, and we always were taught God created the world. And we were also taught about evolution and the big bang in Science class. It got confusing to whom was right. My Confirmaiton teacher said that Catholics don’t have to completely disbelieve science. I think the correct way to think, is that God and science worked together. Kind of like, if the Earth is a giant domino chain, God pushed the first domino, and caused the universe to be created and things to evolve into what it is today. He caused the scientific processes to take place.

I hope that makes sense. It took me awhile to gain understanding of that concept.

Take Care.
Jeanne


#17

Thank you all for your help and it’s starting to make more since to me.


#18

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.