Skip to content
Sign up for monthly email updates of faith and science articles from Magis Center!
Catherine Hadro and Dan Kuebler on Purposeful Lab podcast discussing evolution and the Catholic Church
Purposeful UniverseJanuary 9, 20241 min read

Purposeful Lab: Catholic Church and Evolution

In Season 3, Dan Keubler and Catherine Hadro will dive into biological evolution. They will focus on the evolutionary processes that living organisms have undergone over the past 12 billion years and what the Catholic Church says about biological evolution. This season will include Christian guests who will explain Church teaching on biological evolution, the evolution of the human brain, hominid evolution, and more.

The Catholic Church and Evolution: Reconciliation of Faith  

In today’s episode, Dan and Catherine discuss how to reconcile evolution with the Catholic Church. Particularly, how can we understand biological evolution in light of the human person as made in the image and likeness of God?

Since being made in the image and likeness of God is quintessential to the Catholic Church and evolution, Dr. Keubler explains that Catholic scientists believe in a unity of knowledge in all disciplines. Meaning evolution is just one way to explain the physical aspects of the human person, but it leaves room for theology or philosophy to explain much more about the human person. Biological evolution is just one way to study aspects of creation, but it does not account for everything.

Does Biological Evolution Reduce Man to Just an Animal?  

Many people don’t like to talk about biological evolution because of the possibility that it may reduce humanity to animals alone. However, Dr. Keubler explains that man is a unity of body and spirit, evolution just explains how the human body has changed over time. Yet, evolution cannot explain deeper aspects of the human person, like the soul. Science cannot answer every single question, just ones that involve observable physical phenomena.

Take a Listen

Since Darwin, the Catholic Church has never claimed that biological evolution is wrong. As Dr. Keubler describes, the Catholic Church does not have a stance on science and evolution but has a responsibility to speak into culture. This means that if people claim that biological evolution can explain the totality of man, then the Catholic Church would have to disagree. The Catholic Church believes that evolution is not simply a product of random chance mutation but rather something God allows as He sustains everything in existence. Ultimately, the Catholic Church understands evolution as a tool to understand the physical origins of humanity and how those physical characteristics have developed over time.   





Purposeful Universe

The Purposeful Universe seeks to explore and present, through award winning videos, the abundant order in nature that funnels biological systems toward increasing levels of complexity and sophistication—suggesting that human life is the purposeful outcome of a complex, ordered system.