The Local: “Creationists Taking on Evolution in Germany”
Posted by Mats on 22/04/2009
In February we noted a Der Spiegel article on European creationists (which followed a Guardian article that covered British creationists). Now English-language German paper The Local focuses on Bible believers in that country.
The article begins with Herald Janssen, an “articulate and obviously well-read” creationist who emphasizes the size of Noah’s Ark. “It was as big as an oil-tanker. If you could see it, you’d start to think, ‘Wow, it might have fit all the animals in there.’” Janssen serves on the board of a Swiss nonprofit that wants to build a Bible-themed fun park called “Genesis Land” in Germany.
Reporter David Wroe adds, “Creationism—the belief that Genesis and other books of the Bible explain life on Earth—is gaining strength in Germany.” He cites a recent University of Dortmund survey that showed that around a fifth of future teachers and a similar proportion of those who had studied basic biology doubted evolution, along with one in eleven who were studying for a higher degree in biology. Meanwhile, private Christian schools are growing more popular, half of which are represented by the creation-promoting Association of Evangelical Schools. Even evolutionist Dittmar Graf says he is “really sure that the percentage of Germans who doubt evolution is going up and up.”
(Disappointingly, Wroe later cites a U.S. Gallup poll that showed only 13 percent of Americans “believe in natural selection.” As we have tried to make clear, natural selection and evolution are two very different concepts that are actually at odds—see Is Natural Selection the Same Thing as Evolution? The Creation Museum even received international news attention last month for opening a new exhibit to illustrate that point.)
In related news, NPR program Talk of the Nation also featured a segment this week on religion around the world, specifically focusing on how globalization has sparked a “global faith revival.” The authors of the new book God is Back even speculate that China will be the world’s largest Christian nation by 2050. To read more, see “In Global Revival of Religion, ‘God Is Back’” on NPR’s website.