Not many would have missed this news about Pope Francis declaring evolution and the Big Bang to be true. We have been discussing this for some time now, before we came around to posting our thoughts here.
To begin with, any truth does not need human sanction. If the Church didnt believe or declare the heliocentric model to be true, and upheld, for some time, the geocentric model, that didnt make the geocentric model to be correct. Or, when humanity believed the world to be flat (which, by the way, wasnt a belief shared by all humanity, but thats a whole separate discussion), that didnt quite make it flat. In light of this, the announcement is important as it represents the Church coming to an alignment with the latest scientific discoveries (ok, not necessarily latest, but you get the drift). The important thing here, more so for followers of the Church, is the bridging of the chasm between church and science, hopefully leading followers to a point where they dont have to be torn between two realities of their lives.
The other part of the discussion we have been having with friends center around whether science needs this endorsement. While it is true that it does not, this is a step towards bridging the gap between the two. The more important part, though, is a sort of scientific arrogance, which believes religion to be primitive. Bus is that really so?