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Monday, March 31, 2008

What Does The Catholic Church Teach about Origins?

If you asked me what the Church "Officially" teaches regarding Creation, I would probably say that God created everything and then would have difficulty saying much more.

However, this topic has begun to interest me very much. I am sure that there are many different opinions, especially different opinions within the ranks of theologians as is usually the case when a definitive interpretation has not yet been developed.

The following has been taken from one source. I am not saying that I concur with all that is sited below, especially since I am currently uneducated in the topic, but I do find it very interesting as I follow this journey of enlightenment.

The Kolbe Center for the Study of Creation Defending Genesis from a Traditional Catholic Perspective

God created everything “in its whole substance” from nothing (ex nihilo) in the beginning.(Lateran IV; Vatican Council I)

Genesis does not contain purified myths. (Pontifical Biblical Commission 1909[1])

Genesis contains real history—it gives an account of things that really happened. (Pius XII)

Adam and Eve were real human beings—the first parents of all mankind. (Pius XII)

Polygenism (many “first parents”) contradicts Scripture and Tradition and is condemned. (Pius XII; 1994 Catechism, 360, footnote 226: Tobit 8:6—the “one ancestor” referred to in this Catechism could only be Adam.)

The “beginning” of the world included the creation of all things, the creation of Adam and Eve and the Fall (Jesus Christ [Mark 10:6]; Pope Innocent III; Blessed Pope Pius IX, Ineffabilis Deus).

The body of Eve was specially created from a portion of Adam’s body (Leo XIII). She could not have originated via evolution.

Various senses are employed in the Bible, but the literal obvious sense must be believed unless reason dictates or necessity requires (Leo XIII, Providentissimus Deus).

Adam and Eve were created upon an earthly paradise and would not have known death if they had remained obedient (Pius XII).

After their disobedience of God, Adam and Eve were banished from the Garden of Eden. But the Second Person of the Trinity would subsequently pay the ransom for fallen man (Nicene Creed).

Original Sin is a flawed condition inherited from Adam and Eve (Council of Trent).

The Universe suffers in travail ever since the sin of disobedience by Adam and Eve. (Romans 8, Vatican Council I).

We must believe any interpretation of Scripture that the Fathers taught unanimously on a matter of faith or morals (Council of Trent and Vatican Council I).

All the Fathers who wrote on the subject believed that the Creation days were no longer than 24-hour-days. (Consensus of the Fathers of the Church)

The work of Creation was finished by the close of Day Six, and nothing completely new has since been created—except for each human rational soul at conception (Vatican Council I)

St. Peter and Christ Himself in the New Testament confirmed the global Flood of Noah. It covered all the then high mountains and destroyed all land dwelling creatures except eight human beings and all kinds of non-human creatures aboard the Ark (Unam Sanctam, 1302)

The historical existence of Noah’s Ark is regarded as most important in typology, as central to Redemption. (1566 Catechism of the Council of Trent)

Evolution must not be taught as fact, but instead the pros and cons of evolution must be taught.(Pius XII, Humani Generis)

Investigation into human “evolution” was allowed in 1950, but Pope Pius XII feared that an acceptance of evolutionism might adversely affect doctrinal beliefs.

For more information contact
The Kolbe Center for the Study of Creation

952 Kelly Rd., Mt. Jackson, VA 22842, U.S.A.(540) 856-8453

[1] In 1909, the PBC was an arm of the Magisterium and dissent from its decisions was tantamount to dissent from the teaching of the pope himself.

Here is a great site that is copyrighted so I can not take the information, but it is well worth the read. Please click on the link below.

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