'Thank God for Evolution' author on Island tomorrow

Staten Island Advance

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- The Rev. Michael Dowd, author of "Thank God for Evolution," will give a presentation tomorrow at 7 p.m. at the Unitarian Church of Staten Island in New Brighton.

A former anti-evolutionist, Rev. Dowd now preaches evolution as theology, not theory.

In New York with his wife, Connie Barlow, for a monthlong visit that included an address to the United Nations Values Caucus, Rev. Dowd will give a presentation at the church titled "Evolution and the Global Integrity Crisis."

In a press release, Rev. Dowd said "Facts are God's native tongue... God is still communicating truth today through both religious insights and scientific discoveries. The words 'God' and 'evolution' are pointing to the same divine creative process."

The preacher and his wife have been traveling around the country in their van, speaking at churches, colleges and community gatherings.

Raised Catholic, Rev. Dowd became a born-again Christian following a mountaintop experience on a solo backpacking trip while serving in the U.S. Army in Berlin. He later earned a master of divinity degree from Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary and pastored churches in Massachusetts, Michigan and Ohio.

When he met his wife, an atheist science writer, they saw the possibility of the marriage of science and religion, which "can provide the real moral guidance needed to live in deep integrity," he said. "This is surely what Jesus meant when he said 'I am the way.' He was inviting us to live the way he lived, in integrity, which involves loving our enemies, feeding the hungry and being one with the Father, or the universe, if you prefer."

At the 10:45 a.m. service tomorrow, Ms. Barlow will give a presentation on "Death Through Deep-Time Eyes," a discussion of death as an integral part of the interdependent web that is celebrated as one of the seven principles of Unitarian Universalism.