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Venice Summer School on Science and Religion Explores God and the Laws of Nature

7 Apr

For Immediate Release


Venice, Italy (April 1, 2008) - A select group of top scholars and theologians will attempt to define the relationship between God and nature at the Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti in Venice, Italy, for the Venice Summer School on Science and Religion, a three-year program of one-week seminars on themes in the science-and-religion dialogue. The first session of the program will be held from May 27-June 1, 2008.

Conference participants represent colleges and seminaries from around the world and will present papers on topics that explore the role God plays in the natural world. Abstracts draw from the writings of some of the foremost thinkers in the debate--Charles Darwin, John Haught, and Aristotle--as well as connect the fields of mathematics, philosophy and physics to the position religion plays in defining natural law. The highlight of the seminar will be the keynote addresses from three current experts in the field of science-and-religion: Paul Davies, physicist and science writer; Owen Gingerich, astronomer; and Sir John Polkinghorne, physicist-turned-theologian, and winner of the Templeton Prize.

The Summer School is co-sponsored by the John Templeton Foundation and the Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti. A complete list of seminar participants and their abstracts is available at the Venice Summer School on Science and Religion Web site, at For more information about the conference, including a full schedule of events and speakers, contact program directors Thomas Jay Oord, at 208-467-8816, or Karl Giberson, at 781-801-2189.

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
Contact: Thomas Jay Oord Karl Giberson
208-467-8816 781-801-2189
208-284-2730 (cell)


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