The Church of England will tomorrow officially apologise to Charles Darwin for misunderstanding his theory of evolution.

In a bizarre step, the Church will address its contrition directly to the Victorian scientist himself, even though he died 126 years ago.
Church officials compared the apology to the late Pope John Paul II’s decision to say sorry for the Vatican’s 1633 trial of Galileo, the astronomer who appalled prelates by declaring that the earth revolved around the sun.

The officials said that senior bishops wanted to atone for the vilification their predecessors heaped on Darwin in the 1860s, when he put forward his theory that man was descended from apes.

The Church is also anxious to counter the view that its teaching is incompatible with science. It wants to distance itself from fundamentalist Christians, who believe in the Biblical account of the creation of the world in seven days.

An article to be posted on the Church’s website will say: ‘Charles Darwin, 200 years from your birth [in 1809], the Church of England owes you an apology for misunderstanding you and, by getting our first reaction wrong, encouraging others to misunderstand you still.

‘But the struggle for your reputation is not over yet, and the problem is not just your religious opponents but those who falsely claim you in support of their own interests.’
The Church’s move will reignite the debate over creationism. In the United States, Republican Vice-Presidential candidate Sarah Palin argues that it should be taught in schools.

  1. bobbo says:

    When are they going to apologize to all those they diss for thinking there was no resurrection, or even Jesus?

    – – etc – –

  2. Improbus says:

    Has anyone ever found any real historical evidence for the actual person of Jesus? For all we know the first Christians could have been similar to Scientologists. I am sure L. Ron Hubbard wasn’t the first person to come up with the idea of starting his own religion for fun, profit and trim.

  3. bobbo says:

    #2–improb==I’m no expert. Last I heard, there is no concurrent proof of Jesus existing at all. The closest “proof” comes from 2-3rd hand accounts from people (Josephus and Tacitus) who were born 60 years after his death and merely filing reports of what they heard.

    wiki has several articles on it==I haven’t read them.

    Jesus is a lot like Aliens from Space. Why are they so inept if they actually wanted to make contact?

  4. QB says:


    The evidence is pretty slim to none. The famous Flavius Josephus document is generally discredited since the writing style changes during the passage about Jesus.

    Other than that, it’s the gospels. The four in the new testament were written long after his death by people who never would have met Jesus. If you read the dozens of competing gospels, then you get a very different views of Jesus and his teachings.

  5. Springheel Jack says:

    Outside of the bible, the earliest mention of Jesus was by the Jewish historian Josephus, who wrote about JC in the year 70 AD.

    That’s not a lot of press for the “Son of God.”

  6. just Ed says:

    He sure has got a lot of press since then.

  7. laineypie says:

    I think this is a great move for the church of england, i hope stupid assholes that believe in creationism take a step back and realize, hey maybe evolution IS a more plausible theory than some dude making everything in 7 days.

    i wish the vatican would do something like this, but surely the evil sith lord would never let that happen. and as to the jesus debate i agree, he was probably just an everyday guy who was exceptionally charismatic.

  8. Buzz says:

    Yo, Darwin,

    We’re sorry, oh, so sorry we dissed you for the past 140 years. So we want to make it up to you out of court.

    How about the equivalent of ten G’s a year (pounds sterling) with a 7% interest rate since, say, 1868?

    That makes the payment for your troubles, woah! Holy Mother of God! That’s nearly two billion pounds!

    Well, it was our Bad, so here’s your check. And let all discussion of punative damages be water under the dam.


  9. Jägermeister says:

    I wonder what made them rethink their stance

    Anyway, this means very little. The Church of England is just the comic sidekick on the religious arena. 2.7 million followers… yep, that’s ~0.1% of all Christians. Even Blair gave up on them… I guess they were not radical enough for him.

  10. MikeN says:

    I’d give more weight to this if they hadn’t made Prince Charles apologize for being unfaithful to Diana. If a church abandons its core teachings, then its other apologies carry no weight.

  11. Jägermeister says:

    #8 – Buzz – That’s nearly two billion pounds!

    £10,000 * 1.07^140 = ~£129,935,815.34 = ~£130 million pounds

  12. Jägermeister says:

    Oops… pounds on pounds…

  13. jem says:

    Perhaps more people should read “Thank God for Evolution” by Michael Dowd especially people like Sarah, etc…. See the website

  14. Peanut Butter and Jam says:

    Improbus Has anyone ever found any real historical evidence for the actual person of Jesus?

    There is an interesting book:

    The Pagan Christ by Tom Harpur

    That deals exactly with that. According to Tom Harpur (an Anglican priest) the further you get from Jesus’ death the more evidence appears, which suggests that there never was a historical person called Jesus Christ who was born in Nazareth. He is also shows many of the mythical ‘roots’ of Jesus (other religions with crucified gods and that sort of things). Worth a read if you are interested in such things.

  15. Springheel Jack says:

    Did monkeys evolve from Jesus?

  16. Jägermeister says:

    #15 – Springheel Jack

    It’s not far-fetched… 😉

  17. bobbo says:

    #13–jem==nice link—“but” the author describes a universe WITH god that looks and behaves just like a universe WITHOUT god. “Nested Realities” is just gibberish.

  18. admfubar says:

    wtf??? did hell freeze over? oh wait there is no hell… never mind..

  19. bac says:

    Jesus was not a god. He was just a host with a snake in his head. If you want proof, just go ask SG-1.

  20. Peanut Butter and Jam says:

    Jägermeister 2.7 million followers… yep, that’s ~0.1% of all Christians. Even Blair gave up on them… I guess they were not radical enough for him.

    Ahh…. I think you’ll find its closer to about 13 million in the UK and somewhere around 60 million world wide:

  21. Jägermeister says:

    #20 – Peanut Butter and Jam

    I stand corrected. I believe I mixed them up with the Anglican Church.

  22. Someone says:

    “It wants to distance itself from fundamentalist Christians, who believe in the Biblical account of the creation of the world in seven days.”

    SIX days you f__king heathen!

  23. Peanut Butter and Jam says:

    Church of England is the Anglican church in England, which is affiliated with the Episcopalian Church in the US, the Anglican Church of Canada, and other churches worldwide (in places where the British colonised or otherwise made their presence known). All the Anglican churches are over-seen by the Archbishop of Canterbury (who is also the head of the Church of England in England) in the same way the Patriarchs each over-see Orthodox churches in Russia, Greece or wherever and the Pope over-sees the churches affiliate with Rome.

    Still, I wouldn’t necessarily argue with the Church of England or the Anglican Communion being “the comic sidekick on the religious arena” … 😀

  24. Buzz says:


    Oops. I meant ten grand per year, not a one time triffle.


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