Thursday, June 18, 2009

Book Review: The Heavens Proclaim

As part of The Catholic Company reviewer program, I had the privilege of being able to reviewThe Heavens Proclaim- Astronomy and the Vatican. I am delighted with my most recent escape into reading. With two young children in the house, when I spend my free time with my nose in a book, it is always my sincere hope that I walk away feeling that I have used my time wisely. I am happy to report that reading The Heavens Proclaim was time well spent. The book is a wonderful blend of astronomy, history, and beautiful photography.

An entire section of this book is filled with captivating pictures of the stars paired with scripture. It was a beautiful blend of science and religion that illustrates how well the two can complement one another. The photography is enough to inspire you to go lay under the stars and stare into the great beyond. If the book didn't touch on any of the science or history, the photography alone would have made an inspiring book.

This book is totally packed with information both historical and scientific. I have a tendency to lean towards the social sciences, so for obvious reasons, the portions of this book that delve into the rich history of the Church and her involvement in the area of science appealed to me the most. There is a section that discusses the history of the Church and it's relationship with astronomy through the ages. Other areas of the book touch on the Church and her more recent involvement in the study of Astronomy. I was surprised to see that the church has been on the cutting edge in this area of study in several areas.

The science portions of the book are very thorough when you consider that the book is only 231 pages long. The stars, planets, galaxies, asteroids and meteors are all touched on in varying degrees. The methods by which the stars are studied and classified are explained. So much was covered in the areas dealing with the scientific processes and research, that I cannot possibly do the information justice in this review.

It was interesting to see how the relationship between the Church and science has changed over time. It is a thread that runs throughout the entire book. Common misconceptions about the Church's relationship to science are noted. After reading this book, you'll certainly walk away with the message that the Church is not anti-science like some would have you believe. They have scientists out there who are respected in the academic community. The Church's involvement in astronomy is their way of building a bridge between faith and science.

This review was written as part of The Catholic Company Reviewer Program. Please visit The Catholic Company to get more information on The Heavens Proclaim- Astronomy and the Vatican.
As a reviewer for The Catholic Company Reviewer Program, I was given a free copy of The Heavens Proclaim in exchange for my honest review of the book.

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