Vatican concerns that science is for everyone, not just atheists
When someone who uses science and rationality as the backbone of his cause is found to be far more out of touch with science and rationalism than his allegedly irrational and superstitious opposition, one simply knows that individual is in trouble.
This is the dilemma that crusading Atheist Richard Dawkins finds himself in recently, as the Catholic Church, of all places, has cast some serious doubt on some of the conclusions Dawkins has reached and the obvious absence of the scientific method therein.
Richard Dawkins has been known to insist that the theory of evolution decisively proves that "God almost certainly does not exist".
At a five-day conference commemorating the 150th anniversary of On the Origin of the Species, Vatican theologians discussed the theory of evolution with biologists, molecular geneticists, paleontologists and philosophers. They noted that while Christians still accept God as the divine creative force behind they universe, the Catholic Church "does not stand in the way of scientific realities".
Pontifical Council for Culture head Monsignor Gianfranco Ravasi noted that there is no a priori incompatibility between the Bible and evolutionary theory.
Of course, Darwinian evolution and the creation account in Genesis may not be entirely compatible... if you take the word of the Bible literally. Such views are more generally described as fundamentalism.
Oddly enough, Cardinal William Levada offered his criticism of "those who have a fundamentalist interpretation of the Bible which they want to see taught to their children in the schools alongside evolution or instead of it."
Yet interestingly enough Richard Dawkins has to insist on a fundamentalist interpretation of the creation story as related in Genesis in order to argue that the theory of evolution decisively disproves the existence of God. If one acquiesces to the more widely-held view that the Bible is written predominantly in allegory and metaphor, Dawkins' claim becomes much harder to justify.
If Dawkins' claim that evolution proves "god almost certainly doesn't exist" relies so heavily on a fundamentalist interpretation of the Bible, it becomes very difficult to regard Dawkins himself as anything other than a fundamentalist.
Dawkins and his ilk have far too long been allowed to canonize science and hold it up to be the scripture which disproves religious scripture.
But if those who are allegedly most predisposed toward the fundamentalism that would validate such an argument instead reject fundamentalism, this is an argument without any kind of a future.
The best way to de-canonize science was for religious authority to accept it. Now that this has been done individuals like Richard Dawkins are going to need to find themselves a new scripture for atheism.