PhDs and parishioners

In late 2004, Michael Zimmerman, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and professor of biology at Butler University, was watching early media coverage of the Dover, Pa., intelligent design trial, which broadcast several fundamentalist ministers condemning evolution, and felt frustrated. What he saw was a war between science and religion, and science was losing. So Zimmerman decided to call for a truce. He asked a friend, a member of the clergy, to draft a letter to religious

Andrea Gawrylewski
Dec 1, 2007

In late 2004, Michael Zimmerman, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and professor of biology at Butler University, was watching early media coverage of the Dover, Pa., intelligent design trial, which broadcast several fundamentalist ministers condemning evolution, and felt frustrated. What he saw was a war between science and religion, and science was losing.

So Zimmerman decided to call for a truce. He asked a friend, a member of the clergy, to draft a letter to religious leaders, declaring that science and religion should not be at odds. The letter reads, in part: "We believe that the theory of evolution is a foundational scientific truth, one that has stood up to rigorous scrutiny."

10,000 clergy have added their names to a pro-evolution letter.

Within a month, 200 clergy members had signed the letter. Over the next year, another 10,000 clergy members throughout the world added their names. Reverend...