World-Renowned Physicist To Speak At Chapel March 24

March 23, 2004

by Marianne May, student writer

Baylor University will welcome world-class mathematical physicist the Rev. Dr. John Polkinghorne to speak to students on Wednesday, March 24, at the 10 and 11 a.m. Chapel services in Waco Hall.

The former president of Queens' College in Cambridge, England, Polkinghorne began his career as a lecturer in physics, holding prominent positions at several British universities, including Trinity College and the University of Cambridge.

In 1979, he resigned his professorship to train for the Anglican priesthood and became an ordained deacon in 1981. After serving several parishes as curate and vicar across England, he was appointed president of Queens' College in 1989. Polkinghorne retired in 1996 and was appointed Knight Commander of The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire a year later.

Since his retirement, he has advised and chaired many national and international scientific committees, focusing much of his attention on genetics and cloning. In 2002, he was awarded the Templeton Prize for Science and Religion and also founded the International Society for Science and Religion. Polkinghorne is also a widely published author.

On his website, Polkinghorne distinguishes between his study and knowledge of physics and religion. "Theology is much more difficult [than physics]," he said. "Physics, at least at the undergraduate level, is a subject on which the dust has settled. In theology the dust never settles."

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