The Episcopal Church Network for Science, Technology & Faith Newsletter
Vol. 6-1 Lent 2 early March, 2007


Contents
Science-Technology-Church Roundtable, 18-22 April, Manchester, N.H.
Call for Network members to be ST&F Committee consultants
Upcoming Sewanee conference on ecology & religion
Report: Inaugural William Pollard Lecture
New booklet about Pollard's ST&F contributions
Sjoerd Bonting to deliver next Pollard Lecture, 11 April
Report: Zygon Center conference honors Peacocke's legacy
Book review: Dawkins' The God Delusion
Episcopal preachers do "Darwin Day"
Upcoming Star Island-IRAS Conference, "Emergence--The Human Dimension"
Network members in the Society of Ordained Scientists
In the Spotlight: Some Network members take a bow
Alistair So
Joe Megeath
David B. Bailey
Downloadable Network fliers in English and Spanish
Previous Newsletter Issues


Science-Technology-Church Roundtable, 18-22 April 2007, Manchester, N.H.
      by Jim Jordan, ST&F Committee Chair and member of the ST&F Network Steering Board

    The 2007 gathering of the Ecumenical Roundtable on Science, Technology and the Church is scheduled this year on 20-22 April. Meeting at the Joseph House Contemplative Retreat Center in Manchester, N.H., official delegations from many Christian denominational bodies will convene to work on issues of common importance to them all.

    The Episcopal Church's delegation to the Roundtable consists of the Executive Council's Committee on Science, Technology, and Faith, as well as members of the ST&F Network Steering Board. The Committee members will arrive two days early to consider action plans for its major study areas of this Triennium--reexamining Part III of the Catechism of Creation (see related article just below).

    The ST&F Network Steering Board will hold its annual meeting on Friday afternoon, 1-3:30. Members of the Network who live locally are invited to participate in this meeting. Please contact Convener Dr. Sandra Michael in advance by telephone or email to make arrangements. Members of the Steering Board, elected in 2004, are as follows:

      Convener: Dr. Sandra Michael (Dioc. of Central New York)
      Records Secretary: The Rev. Barbara Smith-Moran, SOSc (Dioc. of Massachusetts)
      Treasurer: The Rev. Sr. Claire Lofgren, SOSc, OSH (Dioc. of New York)
      Membership Secretary: The Rev. Dr. Peter Arvedson, SOSc (Dioc. of Milwaukee)
      Seminary Liaison: Deacon Phina Borgeson (Dioc. of California)
      Episcopal Ecological Network Liaison: Ms. Joyce Wilding (Dioc. of Tennessee)
      Webmaster: The Rev. Dr. David B. Bailey (Dioc. of Southern Ohio)
      Communications Officer: The Rev. Dr. John Keggi, SOSc (Dioc. of Maine)
      Newsletter Editor: The Rev. Barbara Smith-Moran, SOSc
      Graphics Designer: Ms. Susan Youmans (Dioc. of Massachusetts)
      At-large member: Mr. James Burke (Dioc. of Virginia)
      Ex officio member: Dr. Robert Schneider (Dioc. of Western North Carolina)
      Ex officio member: Dr. James Jordan (Dioc. of Northern California)

    [To see an organizational diagram for how the ST&F Network, its Steering Board, the ST&F Committee and the Executive Council are related, click here.]

    Above, David Sloan Wilson
    Friday night, Saturday, and Sunday morning will be devoted to plenary meetings of the Roundtable, in which Lutheran (ELCA), Methodist (UMC), Presbyterian (PC-USA), Congregational (UCC), and other denominational groups participate.

    The keynote speaker for the 2007 Roundtable will be David Sloan Wilson, Professor of Biology and Anthropology, Binghamton University (SUNY), where he founded the multidisciplinary Evolutionary Studies program. Dr. Wilson's first keynote will be on Friday evening at 7:00. The title of that talk is "Evolution for Everyone: How Darwin's Theory Can Change the Way We Think About Our Lives," which is the title of his forthcoming book (Delacorte Press). On Saturday morning at 9:15, he will speak once more, on the topic "Biology & Evolutionary Aspects of Homosexuality." A panel response will follow, and then general discussion with all Roundtable participants.

    Those who would like to hear Dr. Wilson's keynote talks are asked to make arrangements in advance with the Roundtable registrar, Deacon Gail Phillips Bucher, to see whether space is available: telephone, 978-369-3164, or email, gailbucher@att.net.


Call for Network members to be ST&F Committee consultants
    The Executive Council's Committee on Science, Technology and Faith (ST&F) is engaged in discussions of critical importance to the life of the church, the country, the world, and the planet. ST&F is charged with writing Episcopal Church policy within its areas of expertise, and with advising other church bodies in matters impacted by developments in science.

    Committee Chair, Dr. James Jordan, is putting out the call for any members of the ST&F Network with expertise in certain key topics and a willingness to serve as consultants to the Committee. In the current triennium, which began after the June 2006 General Convention, the Committee is examining the following topics from Part III of the Church's recent publication, A Catechism of Creation: An Episcopal Understanding (paperback from Church Publishing; also available on the internet at www.episcopalchurch.org/19021_58393_ENG_HTM.htm).
      Care of Creation
      Water availability, quality, and treatment
      Health of the oceans
      Global warming
      Evolution
      Human sexuality
      Food security
    Episcopalians with background and experience in any of these areas--and the willingness to lend their expertise--are invited to contact Dr. Jordan either by telephone at 707-785-2786, or by email at jajordan@ix.netcom.com.


Upcoming Sewanee conference on ecology & religion, 8-9 March 2007
    Above, Joyce Wilding
    In 2004, Sewanee (The University of the South) received a $15,000 Local Societies Initiative Grant from the Metanexus Institute on Religion and Science to develop a three-year series of programs to examine the concerns, connections and conflicts of science and religion. Called ENTREAT--Enter Now The Reflection, Education, Action Treatise--the local society has been a threeway collaboration among the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Theology, and the Province of Sewanee Environmental Ministry of the Episcopal Church. ENTREAT programs have provided a method for examining the concerns, connections and conflicts of science and religion.

    On 8-9 March, ENTREAT will present its final conference, which will be on the theme of "Water For Life: Conserving Water for People & Nature." It will focus on ways to preserve watersheds and water. ENTREAT explores the implications of the Christian idea of human stewardship of creation, and its impact on a spiritual, social and ecological transformation. Its multi-disciplinary programs support vital public policy and conservation practices and promote activism among people of faith with science backgrounds. Ms. Joyce Wilding, Province of Sewanee Environmental Ministry Leader and a member of the ST&F Network Steering Board, has co-chaired ENTREAT since its inception (see "In the Spotlight," Network Newsletter, Vol. 3-1).

    The first keynote speaker on Thursday afternoon (3/8) is the Rev. Canon Dr. Jeff Golliher. Trained in cultural anthropology as well as theology, is Priest-in-Charge at St. John's Memorial Episcopal Church in Ellenville, New York, and formerly Canon for Environmental Justice and Community Development at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Manhattan. The title of his talk is "The Water Crisis & Sustainable Development."

    Thursday's second keynote speaker is Rabbi Roberta Savage, Executive Director for 28 years of Associations of State and Interstate Water Pollution Control Administrators, one of the most creditable and recognized associations dealing with water issues in the country. This organization did much of the preliminary writing that ultimately became the 1987 Clean Water Act. The title of Rabbi Savage's talk is "Water Rights and Dynamic Water Policies."

    Above, Bp. MacDonald
    The final keynoter, speaking on Thursday night, is the Rt. Rev. Mark MacDonald, former Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Alaska, Assisting Bishop of Navajoland Missionary Diocese, and National Indiginous Bishop in the Anglican Church of Canada. A leading voice for environmental protection and ecological justice, Bp. MacDonald will speak on the topic, "Water & Spirit: Wisdom for Thirsty World."

    Joyce Wilding says, "Many issues at the religion/science interface do not impact the way people live their lives. What happens to the natural landscape, to the animal and plant life living in it and the quality of the water they drink affects them deeply.... People need to learn more about the scientific and ethical principles that govern decisions about environmental issues, especially about decisions that are based on a dynamic water ethic." She may be reached by email at joycewilding@comcast.net.

    All events are free and open to the public. For more information on times and talk venues, consult the ENTREAT 2007 website.


Report: Inaugural William Pollard Lecture
    The inaugural lecture of the William Pollard Lecture Series was held on 13 December, 2006, at the First Unitarian Universalist Church in Belmont, Massachusetts. Dr. Andre de Bethune, Professor of Chemistry emeritus at Boston College, delivered the lecture. The series is part of the Pollard Project, affiliated with the Boston Theological Institute, the consortium of nine Boston-area seminaries and schools of theology. The Pollard Project, honoring one of the Episcopal Church's pioneers in the science-and-theology field, has been encouraged and endorsed by the ST&F Committee and Network.

    The inaugural Pollard Lecturer was introduced by Mr. Courtland Randall, a ST&F Network member, biographer of Pollard, and founder and coordinator of the Pollard Lecture Series, spoke for a few minutes about the life and pioneering contributions of the Rev. Dr. William Pollard to the field of science and religion. (See related article immediately below.)

    Above, Andre de Bethune (r) and Court Randall point out uranium on the periodic table (photo credit: Paul Carr)
    Having immigrated from Belgium as a boy with his family in 1928, de Bethune took advanced degrees in chemistry and worked at Columbia, where he met Pollard in 1944. They worked as colleagues on the enrichment of U-235 using gaseous diffusion methods. Dr. de Bethune said that every group affiliated with the Manhattan Project worked "in a box," unable to discuss their work with anyone working in another box. Everyone was sworn to secrecy. After the war, he worked briefly with Union Carbide before coming to Boston College in 1947, where he enjoyed a long career as Professor of Chemistry before his retirement in 1988.

    In his lecture, Dr. de Bethune focused on the chapters in the history of science that deal with the discovery of subatomic structure and quantum physics. He began with Becquerel's discovery of the photoactive properties of pitchblende, a uranium ore. He was awarded a Nobel Prize for his discovery of spontaneous radioactivity--called Becquerel radiation. Marie and Pierre Curie shared the Nobel with him for their studies of this radiation. Marie Curie discovered the new elements, polonium and radium. Rutherford discovered and investigated alpha, beta, and gamma radiation. Planck discovered quanta, Bohr hypothesized the orbitary model of the atom, and Heisenberg improved upon that model with the hypothesis of "electron clouds."

    He talked about Chadwick's discovery of the neutron, then Fermi's bombardment of uranium with neutrons to give neptunium. In 1938, Fermi was allowed to leave Fascist Italy to accept the Nobel Prize in Stockholm--whence he escaped to New York City. Dr. de Bethune said that he was privileged to audit a course taught by Fermi at Columbia.

    At the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute in Berlin, Hahn, Meitner, and Strassmann were also bombarding uranium with neutrons--and getting "a mishmash," as Dr. de Bethune termed it. Bohr managed to take Lisa Meitner, a Jew, to a Physical Society conference in New York City--and safety from the Nazis. During the ocean voyage, they figured out what had happened to produce the "mishmash"--namely, nuclear fission. After Einstein wrote to President Franklin Roosevelt about fission and its implications for weaponry, the President put the Manhattan Engineering District to work on mastering fission.

    Dr. de Bethune was pulled into research that brought him into collaboration with William Pollard. Speaking about their work together, he explained that U-235, the desirable isotope of uranium, occurs among U-238 isotopes with an abundance of 0.7%. First the uranium is combined with fluorine to form solid UF6, "nasty stuff that fluoridizes anything it touches." At a temperatures above 140 F, it's a gas that can be separated by exploiting the differential diffusion rates of the two isotopic gases.

    He said that he knew nothing about the atomic bomb test at Los Alamos, and that he learned of the Hiroshima bombing from the newspaper headlines of 6 August 1945. Only then did he realize the significance of his research with Pollard. He attended a weekday Mass that day at Corpus Christi Church--it was the Feast of the Transfiguration.

    "Science deals with things that God has given us," said Dr. de Bethune. "I see no conflict ultimately [between science and religion]." He said that he and Pollard never had any conversations about the relationship of science to religion in the context of their work on the Manhattan Project. "We did something the U.S. Government gave us to do," he said.

    Dr. de Bethune's inaugural William Pollard Lecture will soon be published in the science-and-religion booklet series of the Boston Theological Institute, "World View, Scientific Practice & Pastoral Ministry." To receive a copy, contact Court Randall by telephone, 617-527-4888, or by email, courtran@rcn.com.


New booklet about Pollard's ST&F contributions
    William G. Pollard was a nuclear physicist who worked on the Manhattan Project at Columbia University and then headed up the Oak Ridge Institute of Nuclear Studies (Oak Ridge, Tenn.) from its inception right after the WWII until his retirement in 1974. He became increasingly interested in theology--and then priesthood--and was ordained in the Episcopal Church in 1954. He was one of the first Episcopal priest-scientists to participate in the meetings that eventually led to the formation of the Ecumenical Roundtable on Science, Technology and Faith in Canada and the U.S., and the group of Episcopalians that attended the Roundtable meetings.

    Pollard Project Director and ST&F Network member, Mr. Courtland Randall, has written a booklet entitled "Contributions of William G. Pollard: Scientist, Educator, and Priest," which is Volume 3 of the "World View, Scientific Practice & Pastoral Ministry" series published by the Boston Theological Institute. To obtain a free copy, email the author courtran@rcn.com, or contact:
      The Boston Theological Institute, 197 Herrick Circle, Newton Centre, MA 02459
      phone, 617-527-4888


Sjoerd Bonting to deliver next Pollard Lecture, 11 April 2007
      by Courtland Randall, ST&F Network member

    The second speaker to be honored in the William Pollard Lecture Series in science and religion will be the Rev. Dr. Sjoerd Bonting, S.O.Sc. He will speak at 5:15 p.m., 11 April 2007, at Boston University School of Theology, 745 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, Mass.

    Above, Sjoerd Bonting
    With Bonting's friend Bill Pollard as a model, this lecture is intended to encourage working scientists and science teachers who may have a somewhat surpressed or deferred desire to attempt to connect certain of their science activities with matters of the spirit. We hope to stimulate them to begin the quest now. The guests who speak in the Pollard series, like Sjoerd Bonting, did not wait for some quiet period in their professional careers, or for their ultimate retirement. They reached spiritward from the center of their scientific accomplishments.. We need more researches to attempt that, and to share with us something of what they may learn from so doing. The challenge of linking worlds approachable on the one hand by rational analysis and on the other by spiritual quest cannot be profoundly addressed by searchers poorly prepared in either realm.. Pollard certainly knew both, and so does Sjoerd Bonting, who will examine for us his thoughts on "Following Pollard's Lead: From Providence to Chaos."

    Bonting will tell us something about his own research at a number of U.S. universities and at the National Institutes of Health, in Bethesda, Maryland. As a Research Section Chief there, and elsewhere, he did important work on the biochemistry of vision and on sodium transport. He was a scientific consultant to NASA at Ames Research Center in California regarding preparation of biological research on the International Space Station. He has written more than a half-dozen books and major articles on matters ranging from creation, evolution and intellegent design to chaos theory. His professional papers number well over 400.

    His pastoral work has included important stimulation in the formation of four Episcopal congregations in the Netherlands. He will tell us about what Pollard's example meant to him, as well as a fascinating account of various kinds of advice he received when, as an important biochemical reseacher, he--as did Pollard a decade earlier--started on the path toward Holy Orders in the mid-1960s.


Report: Zygon Center conference honors Arthur Peacocke's legacy
      by Susan L. Barreto

    The Zygon Center for Religion and Science and Zygon Journal, in conjunction with the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago and the John Templeton Foundation, hosted a symposium February 9 and 10 on Arthur Peacocke's lifelong work of narrowing the gulf between science and belief. A biochemist and a priest in the Anglican Church, Peacocke died last October after publishing more than 200 papers and twelve books on theology and science. He is one of the world's great thinkers in the effort to build bridges between evolutionary theory and Christian faith.

    Above (l to r), Antje Jackelen (Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago/Zygon Center for Religion and Science), Karl Peters (Rollins College, emeritus), Gloria Schaab (Barry University), and Wentzel van Huyssteen (Princeton Theological Seminary). (Photo credit: Dan Hille)
    Fortress Press published Peacocke's final book in time for this symposium. All That Is: A Naturalistic Faith for Twenty-First Century, written in the months before his death, includes the responses of ten scholars, to which Peacocke in turn responded. Commentaries on this book were given at the conference by Nancey Murphy (Professor of Philosophy at Fuller Seminary), Donald Braxton (Professor of Religious Studies at Juniata College), and Philip Hefner (editor of Zygon Journal).

    Keynote speaker Gloria L. Schaab, assistant professor of systematic theology at Barry University, focused on Peacocke's early work in uncovering the correct framework of dialogue between scientists and theologians. While science analyzes what's observable, theology is based on the infinite, unfathomable reality, she said. "The theologian and the scientist must strive to demonstrate as clearly as possible that the reality which each investigates truly exists," Schaab said. "Concerning finite reality in science and infinite reality in theology, Peacocke proposes that each must speak critically and somewhat skeptically." This brand of inquiry is what Peacocke called "critical realism," the concept that science and theology can refer to the realities they investigate, but neither can literally describe them.

    The concept of God as "cosmic composer" was explored in the panel response to Schaab's talk (see photo above).

    Antje Jackelen, Director of the Zygon Center, opened the second day's seminars with a paper on "Intellectually Honest Theology," something that Peacocke insisted upon. If theology fails to deal with questions that must be asked, humanity ultimately pays for that failure with a loss of meaning, Jackelen said.

    Philip Clayton, Professor of Theology at Claremont Graduate School, focused on Peacocke's concept of hierarchies. He concluded that current views of the hierarchy of sciences fit closely with Peacocke's idea of a hierarchy of interlocking complex systems that have a determinative effect on the whole of nature.

    Ann Pederson, Professor of Religion at Augustana College, spoke on Peacocke's "Christology for a Scientific Age." She highlighted Peacocke's belief that Christ embraces Nature in all its particulars, inclusive of all God's intentions for Creation. "To be Christologically informed for Peacocke is to serve one's neighbor. And who is our neighbor? It is the world around us," said Pederson.

    Northwestern University molecular biologist Gayle Woloschak spoke of how Peacocke's early investigations into the nature of hydrogen bonds in DNA played a role in the discovery of its double-helix structure.

    Paul Heltne, President emeritus of the Chicago Academy of Sciences and Senior Research Scholar with the Center for Humans and Nature, elaborated on Peacocke's interpretation of evolutionary theory. Separating the concept of consequence from chance and determination is essential for looking ahead to Creation's future, he said. The consequence of human activity upon species might be much different from the consequence of what is traditionally thought of as natural selection.

    [Writer Susan Barreto is a financial journalist with an interest in theology.]


Book review: Dawkins' The God Delusion
      by Don Wacome, ST&F Network member
    In The God Delusion (Houghton Mifflin, 2006) Oxford evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins seeks to demonstrate that theistic belief in general, and in particular belief in the God of Christian faith, is irrational and irresponsible. It is belief in an entity that "in all probability does not exist." Turning the tables on those who try to justify belief in God as necessary to explain the world's complexity, Dawkins rhetorically asks, "Who designed the designer?" Any postulated mind responsible for biological complexity or cosmological fine tuning would be more complex than what it is invoked to explain. Whatever ultimate reality is, it is something simple, not anything we could seriously call a God. However, it is hardly a surprise to Christian theology that design arguments are vulnerable on this score. Dawkins seems unaware of the tradition's insistence that God is a metaphysically simple and necessary being. Divine necessity and simplicity are for various reasons problematic concepts, but this book does not even enter into the serious discussion of such matters. Indeed, there is no sustained treatment of any of the traditional attempts to justify theistic belief. Dawkins breezily dismisses in the space of a few pages arguments that have been subject to years of intricate debate. In his view they are even less worthy of attention than the design argument he thinks he has handily shown to be self-refuting. Dawkins puts greater effort into setting out current scientific attempts to explain the origin of human morality and religiosity but, while these parts of the book are far more rewarding than his treatment of traditional issues, he simply assumes, without argument, that these theories decisively undermine theistic belief. There are critics who raise deep and serious challenges to belief in God, but the author of The God Delusion is not one of them.

    Yet Dawkins' failure to engage the theological and philosophical arguments is ultimately tangential to a fair evaluation of this book, for it is clear that this is not his purpose. Indicative of his actual purpose is his claim that the problem of evil, which most theists regard as the most profound challenge belief faces, should not bother us at all, since the God we purport to believe in, the God encountered in the Bible, is far from good. This deity is, Dawkins delights in pointing out, "unjust," "a monster," a "psychotic delinquent," a "malevolent bully," and so on, so we should expect any world this deity created to be rife with pain and evil. This rhetorical excess is in keeping with Dawkins' avowed aim, which is not so much to refute religious belief as to delegitimize it by showing what great fun is to be had in treating it with contempt, thereby modeling honest disbelief and inviting others to join in. To this end The God Delusion is replete with wickedly amusing anecdotes and thus an enjoyable read, even for persons of faith, at least for the thick-skinned among us. Dawkins is outraged by the social convention that treats ridiculous beliefs with solemn respect, especially when those beliefs so often inspire morally reprehensible behavior. He does not think he can argue committed believers out of their faith. His aim is not the refutation of religion but "consciousness raising" designed to liberate those who feel they must pretend to believe, or at least pretend to respect those who do.

    Dawkins takes it for granted that all religious communities teach that blind faith, belief that arises and proceeds with no regard to truth or reason, is a supreme virtue. It is distressing that someone as perceptive as Dawkins finds it plausible to suppose that an honest account of the evidential status of belief is not to be found in the Christian community, and that intellectual dishonesty is definitive of, rather than inimical to, genuine faith. However, on reflection it seems obvious that the proper response to Dawkins' indictment is not to be put off by his ridicule, but to seek to model the possibility of being at once intellectually honest and faithful.

    [Science philosopher Don Wacome is Professor of Philosophy at Northwestern College of Iowa. He is featured "In the Spotlight" in Newletter Vol. 5-1 (Pentecost 2006). Send email comments to him at wacome@nwciowa.edu.]


Episcopal preachers do "Darwin Day"
    On or around 11 February, preachers in 604 Jewish, Christian and Unitarian-Universalist congregations across the U.S. gave sermons about the interactions of science with religion. A substantial number of these--101-- were Episcopal congregations. This was the second annual commemoration of "Evolution Sunday" or "Darwin Day," which is part of the Clergy Letter Project organized by Dr. Michael Zimmerman, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Butler University.

    At least one Episcopal congregation in 34 states joined in, as well as the District of Columbia. Preachers in the state of New York really got into it--17 of them, including at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Manhattan.

    The chief goal of the Clergy Letter Project is a corrective one: to make it clear to the American public, Dr. Zimmerman says, "that clergy from most denominations have tremendous respect for evolutionary theory and have embraced it as a core component of human knowledge, fully harmonious with religious faith."


Upcoming Star Island-IRAS Conference, "Emergence--The Human Dimension"
    The annual conference of the Institute on Religion in an Age of Science (IRAS), co-sponsored by Star Island Corporation , entitled "Emergence: Nature's Mode of Creativity: The Human Dimension," will be held 28 July - 4 August 2007 at the Star Island conference center, New Hampshire. It is the second of a two-year series examining natural phenomena relating to emergence.

    The following introduction is excerpted from the conference website at www.iras.org/conference.html:

      Emergent properties arise out of relationships, like the neuronal signaling patterns that generate mental experience or the interpersonal connections that generate communal identity. They can be analyzed in terms of their interacting components, but the synergies that develop can generate higher--order unities with novel properties. Humans exemplify these emergent capacities in our modes of cognition, allowing us to generate phenomena that could not previously exist, such as music, morality, religion, and science.

      The core thesis of the conference is that human mental evolution was not just "evolution as usual." Rather, it was a case of "emergent evolution," traversing a causal threshold as fundamental as the emergence of life, which in turn made biological evolution possible. Similarly, the emergence of symbolic communication made possible the subsequent co-evolution of brain, language, and culture, driving technology and generating new forms of consciousness in which vast webs of collective cognition and intersubjectivity are possible, many manifest in our religious traditions. These processes can be expected to lead to future transitions--not all human-friendly--that are every bit as revolutionary, demanding that we reflect on our understandings of the true, the good, the beautiful, and the sacred.

    Above, Star Island conference center
    The speakers and the topics of their talks are as follows:
      Philip Clayton, theology, Claremont University: emergence and theology
      Terrence Deacon, anthropology and neuroscience, University of California,
        Berkeley: the emergence of consciousness
      Ursula Goodenough, biology, Washington University, emergence theory
      Niels Gregersen, theology, University of Copenhagen: God in a world of fluid
        networks: why a Christian naturalism is viable
      Barbara King, biological anthropology, College of William and Mary: primates
        and the evolution of religion
      Eduardo Kohn, cultural anthropology, Cornell University: tribal humans in
        relation to their ecosystems
      Duane Rumbaugh, psychology, Great Ape Trust of Iowa: emergent nature of
        language and learning
      Sue Savage-Rumbaugh, biology, Great Ape Trust of Iowa: emergence of ape and
        human cultures
      R. Keith Sawyer, education and psychology, Washington University: social emergence and creativity
      Linda Stone, computer technology: emergent cybernetic psychology
      Mark Turner, cognitive science, Case Western Reserve University: human mind and creativity

    For information about registration, lodging fees, and speaker profiles, see the conference website.

    IRAS annual conferences have been held on Star Island every summer since 1954. Star Island, one of the Isles of Shoals, is just off the coast of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. See www.starisland.org.


Network members in the Society of Ordained Scientists
    Several ST&F Network members belong to the Society of Ordained Scientists, which is a dispersed preaching order of the Anglican Church. Founded in 1987 by Arthur Peacocke, John Polkinghorne, John Kerr and a few other British scientist-priests, the Society will mark its 20th anniversary at its annual gathering next summer. Sadly, Arthur Peacocke, who died last October, will not be there in person.
    Above (l to r), John Keggi, Barbara Smith-Moran, visitors Dorothy and Neff Powell (Bp. of Southwestern Virginia), Gail Bucher, Tom Lindell--North American Chapter members and guests at the 2006 S.O.Sc. Annual Retreat, Yorkshire, U.K.


    Some founders of the ST&F Network have been S.O.Sc. members since 1988--notably the Rev. Dr. John Keggi and the Rev. Dr. Peter Arvedson. (Keggi received the ST&F Network's Genesis Award in 2005, and Arvedson in 2006.) The Rev. Barbara Smith-Moran (Network Newsletter editor) and the Rev. Claire Lofgren (Network treasurer) were the first woman priests to become members--though several woman deacons were waiting for the Anglican Church to approve their ordination to priesthood (which happened in 1994).

    The Rev. Dr. Tom Lindell, a member of the ST&F Committee, is also a Society member.

    Between annual meetings in July, regional chapters meet for discussions of any number of developments in science and technology and how they impact the life of faith. They publish occasional reports and are tapped from time to time as consultants to church task forces. In 2005, the Society published a report that it intends as a resource by churches on the Anglican Communion in their discussions about human sexuality. Entitled "On the Biological Basis of Human Sexual Orientation," the report was written by Lindell and the Rev. Dr. David de Pomerai. It is available online at www.thesosc.org/articles/articles.html.

    More information about the Society can be found at their website. To apply for membership, contact the North American chapter co-conveners, John Keggi and Claire Lofgren.


In the Spotlight: Some Network members take a bow
For this feature, we invite our members to introduce themselves with short biographies. Please send your own bio-sketch and a picture to the editor.
  • The Rev. Alistair So
    protein biochemist-priest, Severna Park, Md.
    ST&F Committee
    Above, Alistair So

    I came to St. Martin's-in-the-Field, Severna Park, Md., as Associate Rector in June 2005, after graduating from the Virginia Theological Seminary. Now I serve the parish as Priest-in-Charge.

    Prior to the ordained ministry, I worked as a proteomics research scientist in the biopharmaceutical industry after having received a master's degree in microbiology and immunology from Georgetown University and a bachelor's degree in biology from American University. Combining my skills in science and theology, I am now serving on the Executive Council's Committee on Science, Technology and Faith at the national level of the Episcopal Church.

    Apart from celebrating the Holy Eucharist, preaching, officiating at other liturgies, doing pastoral care and administrative work, working with the youth and adult programs at the parish, I also serves as Chaplain for the parish's Day School. I enjoy the great outdoors, traveling, road trips, reading, skiing, and white-water rafting. In addition, I enjoy jogging and exploring nature with my ever puppy-like six-year-old Siberian Husky, Maxine.

    You can reach me by email at aso@stmartinsinthefield.org.



  • Dr. Joe Megeath
    statitician-management scientist, Lander, Wyo.
    I'm 67, and it seems that the older a person gets, the harder it becomes to get all that baggage into a brief introduction. Here's a shot at it, using "Science, Technology & Faith" as a structure.

    I was raised in Wyoming and returned to the state after taking an early retirement from Metropolitan State College of Denver (MSCD). I have been a freelance writer for the last ten years, primarily writing articles about the West. I also edit/write an 8-page quarterly newsletter for the Wyoming Solid Waste and Recycling Association and serve as administrator for that organization.
    Above, Joe Megeath


    In Science, I hold a Ph.D. in operations research and mining engineering from The Colorado School of Mines, with prior degrees in mathematics and statistics. I taught undergraduate and graduate classes (statistics/management science) for over twenty years, consulted for the minerals industry, and was an expert witness in a few legal cases.

    I authored a moderately successful introductory statistics textbook, How to Use Statistics (Canfield Press, 1975), and the requisite journal publications.

    In Technology, I chaired an explosively growing Department of Computer and Management Science at MSCD for fifteen years and was Dean of the School of Business there for three years. Industrial experience includes stints with Ford Motor Company and with Gates Rubber Company.

    This November I finished a 4-year term as a Trustee for Central Wyoming College and chose not to run for re-election. For the past two years I have been a Governor-appointed member of a committee forming an extensive, statewide merit scholarship program for high school graduates based on funding from minerals severance taxes.

    And in Faith, I am a member of Trinity Episcopal Church, Lander, Wyoming (a Mutual Ministry/Partnering Congregation). I am currently Senior Warden, a licensed preacher, and serve on the Diocesan Standing Committee. I am an EFM mentor along with my wife, the Rev. Sally Megeath (a deacon). In our combined family we have six children, eight grandchildren, and one great-grandchild on three continents.

    I've had a lot of fun (and satisfaction) from the Catechism of Creation. I spent three sessions leading the adult Sunday School group though it. The participants really liked its thought-provoking nature.

    You can reach me by email at jmegeath@wyoming.com.



  • The Rev. Dr. David B. Bailey
    physical chemist-priest, Cincinnati, Ohio
    ST&F Committee Vice-chair, and ST&F Network Steering Board (webmaster)
    Above, David Bailey and turtle bless each other

    I was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, a fifth generation Cincinnatian of Appalachian, Swiss and German heritage. I attended Miami University in Ohio where I received a B.S. in Chemistry. From there I journeyed south to the University of South Carolina where I (finally!) obtained my Ph.D. in Chemistry ("Cadmium-113 NMR Studies of Metalloproteins"). After a brief interlude at SUNY-StonyBrook, where I managed a tritium NMR facility, I joined the ARCO Chemical R&D facility in Newtown Square, Pa., where I ran the NMR lab. After 13 years on the East Coast, I returned to Cincinnati in 1986, where I joined the USI Chemicals R&D facility as an NMR spectroscopist. I worked in the lab there for over 12 years; a good part of that time I was in R&D middle management. Spurred on when I had to obtain new business cards for the fourth name change of the company, I submitted myself to a long delayed discernment process and was ultimately ordained a priest in the Diocese of Southern Ohio. I am currently Rector of St. Stephen's Episcopal Church in Cincinnati. I serve on a variety of diocesan organizations as well as being involved in the startup of a not-for-profit corporation that will consolidate the outreach ministries of about eight different churches in our area.

    My wife Mary (Molly) Bailey has a Ph.D. in Developmental Neurobiology ("Glia in the Rat Olfactory Bulb: Cell Type Heterogeneity and Roles in Development") and is currently employed as the Manager of Clinical Studies for North Cliff Consultants, a product testing company in Cincinnati. We have two teenage daughters, neither of whom shows much interest in science as a vocation.

    My scientific interests right now are focused on the study of chaos, complexity and emergence--or at least they would be if I ever had a free month! I am also a student of postmodern society, and how systems thinking can be applied to parish and diocesan organizations.

    You can reach me by email at revdbb@aol.com.





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Previous Newsletter Issues
Vol. 1-1, All Saints 2001
Vol. 1-2, Epiphany 2002
Vol. 1-3, Trinity 2002

Vol. 2-1, New Year 2003
Vol. 2-2, Sts Peter & Paul 2003
Vol. 2-3, Christmas 2003

Vol. 3-1, Ash Wednesday 2004
Vol. 3-2, St. Luke (18 Oct.) 2004

Vol. 4-1, Lent 5 (mid-March) 2005
Vol. 4-2, St. Aidan (31 Aug.) 2005
Vol. 4-3, Christ the King (20 Nov.) 2005

Vol. 5-1, Pentecost (4 June) 2006
Vol. 5-2, Holy Cross Day (14 Sept.) 2006
Vol. 5-3, Thanksgiving (23 Nov.) 2006

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Send comments and contributions to the Network Newsletter editor, The Rev. Barbara Smith-Moran, S.O.Sc.
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All Network Newsletter materials may be reproduced with proper attribution.
Revised 6 March 2007