The conversation begun with the creationist event

When a creationist group came to campus at the beginning of November, Campus Edge was a positive part of the conversation about how science and faith relate. Last month, one of the non-Christian biology graduate students (Carina Baskett) wrote about her experience at the event. As it gives a glimpse of how we hope to be a blessing to Michigan State campus, I am including here some of her words about her experience at the creationist event:

“I talked with a couple of attendees, including one who seemed to be a conference organizer. I felt that we were able to convey the message that scientists are humans with no hidden anti-religion agenda, a sense of excitement about science and evolution, and to educate (to some small degree) about how science works.

There was fear among some MSU scientists that attending the conference would inevitably cause dramatic conflict and lead to bad press, but I think we proved that civil outreach is entirely possible. . . Despite the fact that we were there in opposition to the creationist message of the conference, and that we represented the scientific establishment that creationists view as oppressive, people were friendly and gracious.

I learned so much from this experience. I wanted to humanize scientists, but I had not realized that humanization is a two-sided coin. Just like me, creationists are doing their best to understand how this crazy world works and what our place in it is. They have come to radically different conclusions from me, and I do not agree with their methods that ignore reason and evidence, but we both share a concern about the future of our society. Now creationists are not faceless enemies to me, and I hope that the ones I talked with feel the same about scientists.”

I encourage you to read the whole article: Beacon Researchers at Work: Outreach in the Lion’s Den. The article reminds me of how thankful I am that Campus Edge got to be part of encouraging healthy dialogue on faith and science.