BRESCIA, Italy, SEPT. 28, 2010 (Zenit.org).- Though their relationship has not always been harmonious, faith and science are actually sisters, says the president of the Pontifical Council for Health Care Ministry.
The two entities are not only linked, added Archbishop Zygmunt Zimowski, but are both necessary for the good of mankind.
The 61-year-old Vatican official affirmed this Monday when he opened a national conference of the Hospitaller Order of St. John of God. The 300-some participants are reflecting on the theme: "Science and Faith: Option of Life."
According to Vatican Radio, Archbishop Zimowski affirmed that science and faith can establish a "fruitful and respectful relationship," because both can be considered complementary "for the good of man."
"Over the course of time relations between science and faith have not always been very harmonious," he reflected. Yet, despite this, they are "sisters," inasmuch as they have "their origin in the Heavenly Father, although they are gifted, each one with its own originality, their own mission and method."
Moreover, he said, faith and science can be friends because faith -- "understood and lived correctly" -- only leads to an increasing thirst for knowledge, something which sciences are committed to discover.
But science and faith must be allies, the archbishop affirmed, since they are "at the service of man, of truth, of life, one with the other."
Science and faith are at the service of life, he said, because "they are called to proclaim and cultivate the gospel of life and to protect the grandeur and preciousness of human life, rejecting every threat and violence against it, professing the inviolable value of each person, denouncing every culture of death."
Hence, the prelate insisted that science and faith aid one another because the former "invites the believer to cultivate his intelligence," while the latter invites the scientist "not to be discouraged by failures, to be always at the measure of man, to look beyond, to God, hope that is not hidden."
He said that all this finds its application in the care of the sick, because "only united" can science and faith "lift man." They are "two different and unmistakable binaries" that together lead "to a future of goodness and solidarity."