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Nancy Howell

Nancy Howell

Prof. Nancy Howell, Ph.D.
United Methodist
Professor of Theology and Philosophy of Religion
Saint Paul School of Theology
Kansas City, MO

Personal Statement:

Christian scripture encourages believers to worship God with heart, mind, soul, and strength.  My education included both science and theology because of my deep longing to worship God with my mind.  In my twenties, I studied science and contributed to university research because my faith inspired wonder at the natural world.  As a theologian, I now reflect in amazement on the diverse historical and contemporary ways of engaging science from the perspective of faith.  My faith grows because both Christian thought and science nurture my belief.

The theory of evolution helps me to understand the natural world in relation to God’s love.  Authentic love requires freedom, and evolution describes the way that nature is free to love God.  As humans, animals, and plants make their way through the processes of nature, a loving God does not control nature, but God is present in creative natural processes and with creatures.  Evolution not only opens my eyes to the complexities of nature, but opens my heart to the depth of God’s love, wisdom, and creativity.  Deep appreciation of the beauty of nature generates a deep and intense knowledge of God, which is the mind’s worship.


Suggested further online reading:

The United Methodist Church and Evolution

Websites about science and religion:


Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences



Zygon Center for Religion and Science

Other resources:

Transcripts and Specifics about the Dover Trial

National Center for Science Education

Evolution as Friend of Religion?

Evolution and Theology