Creationism row

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As a Christian and a teacher I have an understanding of the situation reported (“Creationist row: school joint head teachers removed”, 13 September).

All educational personnel have to have police clearance and if they have continued for eight years the chances are their work has been found satisfactory.

Heads are not normally concerned with the belief system of their teachers, but there is an unwritten rule that neither teachers nor assistants send anything home to parents without the consent of the head. On the other hand, the topics discussed, the correctness of creationism and the sinfulness of homosexuality, actually conform to mainstream Christian belief.

It is in other areas that the group differs.

Yes, the heads must have been naïve not questioning the steady stream of Americans when there is an ample supply of capable local educators.

Margaret E Salmond

Dunbar Street


John Munro (Letters, 13 September) highlights the arguments over evolution and creationism. The rationale for such an argument escapes me since both sides appear to accept that there was a creation point (most recently described as “Big Bang”).

There are countless creation stories, each one restricted by the knowledge and understanding of the people at the time the story was formulated.

In the future our “Big Bang” story might well be viewed on a par with some of the other creation stories.

It appears to me that following on from creation we have evolved. Those on the so-called creationist side would argue that God has played an important part in evolution, whereas the so-called evolutionists discount God.

If God does exist, as I believe he does, then it seems perfectly sensible for him to use evolution as the general building strategy for his kingdom here on earth and simply intervene at key points in the evolution 

Sandy Gemmill

Warriston Road


John Munro states that “arguments over evolution and creationism usually ignore the fact that, while there is only one evolution theory, there are hundreds of very different creation ones”.

What Mr Munro fails to see, however, is that creation narratives address the origin of life, while evolution addresses the development of life. In this respect comparing creationism with evolution is like comparing apples with oranges.

I agree that a comparative study of creation narratives is worthwhile, so that “the interpreter must… go back wholly in spirit to those remote centuries of the East and with the aid of history, archaeology, ethnology, and other sciences accurately determine what modes of writing, so to speak, the authors of that ancient period would be likely to use, and in fact did use” (Divino Afflante Spiritu).

However, a similar critical approach should be applied to the study of evolution, which is not just one type but falls into many categories, each with their own mechanisms.

There has always been considerable debate amongst scientists concerning these mechanisms and as a Christian and a scientist these discussions fascinate me, but I also accept that all of these discussions have so far failed to answer the question of how life began.

Ian Maxfield

Lodge Park