In Particles of Faith, Stacy Trasancos offers Catholics a way of understanding the relationship of faith and science and the tools necessary to discuss it. Sometimes it will go over a lay person’s head, but I ask the reader to be patient. The whole book isn’t that way and value of this book in the faith vs. reason discussion far outweighs the few moments of confusion.
Stacy Trasancos is probably the best person around to write a book like this. She has a PhD in Chemistry living much of her life a student without a clear faith foundation. As a scientist who has converted to Catholicism, who better to explain how faith and reason are not mortal enemies, but rather two wings on the same bird, helping us all to grow in our relationship with God. (I just mixed metaphors there, but I think it works.)
When I was in third grade I remember asking my teacher in a public school, no less, “Were Adam and Eve monkeys?” Let me repeat that, third grade in public school. My family wasn’t even religious. My teacher was taken back. She expressed that she was impressed with the question and shared some story about other questions like that she’d been asked, but didn’t really give me an answer because I’m sure she couldn’t. The chapter about evolution in this book reminded me of this exchange and gave me more food for thought on this issue. That chapter was the one I could understand best and it raises questions that your average armchair theologian or scientist wouldn’t think of.
Please read this book if you are interested in the relationship between faith and reason.