God & Science

God & Science


The Central Pennsylvania Forum for Religion and Science, under the direction of Dr. Edward B. (“Ted”) Davis, Professor of the History of Science, sponsors a variety of events, all intended to help promote better understanding of religion and science–including medicine and social science–in this region.  We continue the college’s established tradition of hosting speakers who represent diverse religious and disciplinary perspectives.  We also sponsor a book discussion group, presently meeting (usually) on the second Thursday of the month during the academic year (see below for more details).  Most events take place on our campus, but some are held in other locations. 

All of our events are announced here.  PLEASE BOOKMARK THIS PAGE FOR FUTURE REFERENCE.  Information about each event is also sent electronically to anyone who wants to be contacted by email.  Recipients are sent blind copies, in order to ensure that individual addresses are kept private.  To add your name to this list, or to update your email address, contact Dr. Davis at or at 717.766.2511 ext. 6840.  Dr. Davis’ web page contains further resources on science and religion:

All of our events are open to the public—indeed, it is the people of central Pennsylvania whom we seek to serve.  Most events are free; any exceptions will be clearly announced.  Except in rare instances when an external grant is obtained for a particular event, our budget comes entirely from contributions.  If you like what we do, please consider making a donation.  The primary benefit for donors is knowing that you have helped us provide quality programs, but donors may be invited to a limited number of private events, such as opportunities to dine with speakers. Donors are also invited to suggest specific programs for future events.  If you wish to contribute, please contact Dr. Davis.



THE READING GROUP will meet twice this fall on the following schedule.  We will read portions of the book, Science and Christianity: Conflict or Coherence? (2003), by a world-class Christian chemist, Henry (“Fritz”) Schaefer of the University of Georgia.  Dr. Schaefer is the speaker at our October event (below).  The two meetings are in different locations and at different times, so please note the information carefully. 

Thursday, Sept 8, from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm in Kline Hall 108—Introduction, chap 2 (“Scientists and Their Gods”), chap 3 (“The Nondebate with Steven Weinberg”), chap 9 (“From Berkeley Professor to Christian”), and chap 10 (“The Way of Discovery”).  This material is more personal in nature and will provide background for his visit.

Thursday, Oct 6, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm in Larson Union 237—chap 4 (“The Big Bang, Stephen Hawking, and God”), chap 5 (“Climbing Mount Improbable: Evolutionary Science or Wishful Thinking?”), and chap 7 (“C. S. Lewis on Science and Scientism”).  This material is more academic and closely related to the talk he will give the next evening.  Good news: Dr. Schaefer will join us for dinner and conversation!  The location is a lovely conference room one floor above the Union Café, where you can buy your own meal and bring it upstairs.  If you plan to attend this dinner meeting, please notify me at least 48 hours in advance.  Seating is limited and available on a first-come basis.

Our program of FREE PUBLIC LECTURES has one fall event, as follows:

On Friday evening, Oct 7, we are hosting Henry (“Fritz”) Schaefer, Graham Perdue Professor of Chemistry and Director of the Center for Computational Quantum Chemistry at the University of Georgia.  He is also a devout Christian who is not shy about his faith.  That combination is uncommon, so this is an uncommon opportunity to hear and meet an important Christian scientist.  Dr. Schaefer will give a free public talk at 7:00 pm in Hostetter Chapel.  His topic is “The Big Bang, Stephen Hawking, and God.”  He’s given this talk dozens of times on university campuses all over the world.  We could have a large crowd, so I advise early arrival to ensure a good seat. 

A second event in March 2017 will be announced later this fall. Stay tuned!