Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Vatican Joins the Search for E.T.

I’ve got a quickie, today. And it’s an interesting one. It seems that the Vatican has come a long way since it put Galileo Galilei under house arrest for his writings on a Universe in which Earth was not at the center.

On the occasion of the International Year of Astronomy 2009, the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Science organized and held its first Study Week on Astrobiology. The event took place from Friday, November 6, through Tuesday, November 10.

In view of the discoveries of extra-solar planets and, Vatican officials have responded that the question of extra-terrestrial life is interesting and deserves serious consideration. At the event, experts offered information on planets discovered outside of our solar system and also discussed how life may have started on Earth. When asked whether aliens would present a challenge to church teaching, officials responded that the search for alien life did not conflict with the faith because nothing can put limits on God’s creativity.

To learn more about the Study Week, the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences, and the International Year of Astronomy 2009, check out these links:

Overview Booklet on the Study Week on Astrobiology
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_academies/acdscien/2009/booklet_astrobiology_15.pdf

Pontifical Academy of Sciences
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_academies/acdscien/index.htm

International Year of Astronomy 2009
http://www.astronomy2009.org/

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