Ask a young Catholic why they are walking away from the Church and one of the main reasons is usually a perceived conflict between science and Christianity. The student edition of Particles of Faith: A Catholic Guide to Navigating Science aims to help Catholic high school students find real answers to real questions about the interaction of science and faith.
What is the origin of life?
Does the Big Bang prove God?
Can a Christian accept the theory of evolution?
Teacher and scientist Dr. Stacy A. Trasancos—who converted to Catholicism while confronting similar concerns about science and faith—addresses these and many other probing questions in the student edition of Particles of Faith, a book designed for use in a high school theology or science course. At the end of the book, students will be able to not only answer key questions about the faith but also to explain those answers to others.
The Particles of Faith Teacher Resource Guide can be found online in the Classroom Resource section of the Ave Maria Press website and helps teachers adapt the book’s material as a separate unit in regularly-scheduled courses such as morality, social justice, life science, or in in chemistry and physics courses. Lesson plans in the Particles of Faith Teacher Resource Guide include quizzes and tests. Trasancos also has produced videos with related content in conjunction with Bishop Robert Barron and Word on Fire Catholic Ministries.
She employs encyclicals such as Pope Francis’s Laudato Sí, the deep reflections of theologians such as St. Thomas Aquinas, and the exacting work of Catholic scientists such as Fr. Georges Lemaître—who proposed the game-changing Big Bang theory—to show how science and faith are interwoven lights meant to guide students on the path to truth. Trasancos also explains how the Catholic faith and science work together to reveal the truth of Christ through the beauty of his creation. She leads with the understanding that science awakens the wonders of the foundational statement of the faith: that God is Creator of all, seen and unseen.
About the Author:
Stacy Trasancos has a Ph.D. in chemistry from Penn State University and worked as a senior research chemist for DuPont before converting to Catholicism. She left her career to stay home with her highly complex composite systems who call her Mommy. In those years, she earned a M.A. in dogmatic theology while keeping a large family together and published five books on the integration of science and theology. In 2018, Dr. Trasancos became the Executive Director of Bishop Strickland’s St. Philip Institute in Tyler, Texas but, once again, returned home in 2022 to work with her husband, Jose. Together they operate Children of God for Life, an organization that fights to end the use of aborted children in research. Dr. Trasancos teaches online science and theology courses for Seton Hall University and Holy Apostles College and Seminary, is a Fellow of the Word on Fire Institute, and frequently appears on Catholic radio, podcasts, and television. After the publication of her book, Particles of Faith, John Farrell at Forbes wrote, “Trasancos represents a very rare bird, the scientist who did not cease to be a geek even after she got religion.”