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Open Theologians and Scientists Converge on Azusa Pacific University

Seminar hopes to create a new field of science-and-religion research

Contact: Thomas Jay Oord, 208-467-8816, 208-284-2730 cell, tjoord@nnu.edu

AZUSA, Calif., April 3 /Christian Newswire/ -- Some of the world's most respected scientists and theologians will come together for the opportunity to create a new direction of research in science-and-religion at the Open and Relational Theology Seminar. Events will be held Thursday, April 10 through Saturday, April 12, 2008 at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, Calif. The three-day seminar will feature a series of lectures and debates on a number of topics--cosmology, biology and the human sciences--all designed to generate interest in the growing field of open theology and to further explore the relationship between science and religion.

Open theology takes the view that the future is open and that God does not fully know the details of what may actually happen. God and everything in the universe--animals and humans alike--can influence each other. This seminar serves as a follow-up to the Open Theology and Science Conference held at Eastern Nazarene College in Quincy, Mass., in June 2007. Participants will present papers on open theology and science that were produced as a result of the foundations laid at last year's conference. Presenters include: Francis Collins, National Human Genome Research Project; John Sanders, Hendrix College; Anna Case-Winters, McCormack Theological Seminary; Clark Pinnock, McMaster Divinity College and Michael Lodahl, Point Loma Nazarene University.

In addition to the paper presentations, there will be a series of keynote lectures and panels:

  • April 10, 7 p.m., Upper Turner Campus Center
    "The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief"
    Francis Collins, director, National Human Genome Research Project
  • April 11, 7 p.m., Wilden Lecture Hall
    "A Flexible Sovereignty: A Biblical Understanding of Providence and the Nature of the Future"
    Greg Boyd, Woodland Hills Church, Maplewood, Minn.
  • April 12, 7 p.m., Wilden Lecture Hall
    Panel: "Answering the Critics"

The Open Theology and Science Conference is sponsored by the John Templeton Foundation. For a full list of participants and speakers, the conference schedule and a series of in-depth resources on open theology, visit www.enc.edu/opentheo. For more information about attending or covering the seminar, please contact Thomas Jay Oord, program organizer, at 208-467-8816, or tjoord@nnu.edu.

The mission of the John Templeton Foundation is to serve as a philanthropic catalyst for discovery in areas engaging life's biggest questions. These questions range from explorations into the laws of nature and the universe to questions on the nature of love, gratitude, forgiveness and creativity. Also recognizing the importance of character and virtue toward building a free society, the foundation supports a broad spectrum of programs, publications and studies that promote character education from childhood through young adulthood and beyond. Its vision is derived from John Templeton’s commitment to rigorous scientific research and related scholarship, and its motto "How little we know, how eager to learn" exemplifies the foundation's support for open-minded inquiry and its hope for advancing human progress through breakthrough discoveries. Information about the John Templeton Foundation can be found at www.templeton.org.