[> quote=“gbrooks9, post:134, topic:36790”]
Well, 1) I was Baptized a Catholic. So I’m certainly aware of the diversity of beliefs within the Catholic Church.
And 2), I do believe you are over-stating the status of these variations. The position of the Church is not to say “whatever”. The Vatican endorses:
A. Speciation through Common Descent - - at the very least, for non-human life.
B. Speciation over millions of years.
C. And, as you say, that all humanity descends from Adam & Eve.
I am hazy on whether their position includes the idea that all humanity can ALSO have other universal human pair ancestors. I would assume it does.
The context of your discussions here strike me as being centered around a Young Earth scenario. Would that be fair to say?
- Congratulations on being baptized Catholic. That does not make you an expert in the Church’s teaching, especially if you were baptized as an infant, and have done no further study.
2.What level of Vatican document do you refer to? There have been a few from low level organizations in the Church, but for a definitive statement it must come from an encyclical. The last encyclical to deal with the subject was Humani Generis, which stated, (Humani Generis (1950):
"36. For these reasons the Teaching Authority of the Church does not forbid that, in conformity with the present state of human sciences and sacred theology, research and discussions, on the part of men experienced in both fields, take place with regard to the doctrine of evolution, in as far as it inquires into the origin of the human body as coming from pre-existent and living matter – for the Catholic faith obliges us to hold that souls are immediately created by God.
Some however, rashly transgress this liberty of discussion, when they act as if the origin of the human body from pre-existing and living matter were already completely certain and proved by the facts which have been discovered up to now and by reasoning on those facts, and as if there were nothing in the sources of divine revelation which demands the greatest moderation and caution in this question.
37. When, however, there is question of another conjectural opinion, namely polygenism, the children of the Church by no means enjoy such liberty. For the faithful cannot embrace that opinion which maintains that either after Adam there existed on this earth true men who did not take their origin through natural generation from him as from the first parent of all, or that Adam represents a certain number of first parents. Now it is no no way apparent how such an opinion can be reconciled with that which the sources of revealed truth and the documents of the Teaching Authority of the Church propose with regard to original sin, which proceeds from a sin actually committed by an individual Adam and which, through generation, is passed on to all and is in everyone as his own.
For a full explication of the history of the Church’s attitude toward evolution, including currently, I recommend Fr. Michael Chaberek’s book Catholicism and Evolution.
Your question about other parentage for humanity is answered above.
I have already said, and say it again that I do not hold to a young earth scenario. It raises too many scientific difficulties, even for me
The Catholic Church is historically very slow-moving on issues of doctrine and morals. One might even say it’s glacial. The debate is on, however. Mine is a minority opinion among scholars. Evolution is taught in the schools as accepted fact, which it should not be, based on Humani generis. “Some however, rashly transgress this liberty of discussion, when they act as if the origin of the human body from pre-existing and living matter were already completely certain and proved by the facts which have been discovered up to now and by reasoning on those facts.” It certainly should be taught, but with arguments both for and against, including arguments for design.