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The Vatican Observatory. Faith and Science


As a supporter of an internationally recognized scientific research institute staffed by religious of the Society of Jesus, and an incorporated non-profit foundation dedicated to the support of the only scientific institution supported by the Holy See, the Vatican Observatory Foundation is in a unique position to demonstrate the Catholic Church’s support of science. We propose to upgrade and amplify our existing online communication resources into a system that can deliver a variety of resources on Faith and Astronomy, including both new content and already existing material, in a format that can be used by Catholic educators and be accessed directly by educated Catholics. This work is in accord with our purpose, to support the Vatican Observatory in the mission given to it by Pope Leo XIII in 1891, “that everyone might see clearly that the Church and her Pastors are not opposed to true and solid science… but that they embrace it, encourage it, and promote it.” 

The Vatican Observatory (Specola Vaticana) is a scientific research institute whose purpose is to demonstrate the active presence of the Holy See in the world of astronomical research, traditionally subject of interest within the Catholic Church. It is one of the oldest astronomical institutes in the world. The members also conduct interdisciplinary activities through lectures, essays and books on the relationship between science and religion. 

Board of Directors

The site, edited by the Vatican Observatory Foundation, is supported by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation. 

Vatican Observatory Foundation: Guy Consolomagno, S.J. (Director); Rev. Gabriele Gionti, S.J. (Vice-Director of the Vatican Observatory for Castel Gandolfo), Rev. Pavel Gabor, S.J. (Vice Director), Rev. Richard P. Boyle, S.J. (Astronomer), Rev. David A. Brown, S.J. (Area of Research), Rev. Christopher J. Corbally, S.J. (President National Committee Astronomy, Vatican City State, IAU), Rev. Richard A. D’Souza, S.J. (Astronomer), Rev. Matteo Galaverni (Associate Astronomer), Rev. Robert Janusz, S.J. (Philosopher and Physicist), Rev. Jean-Baptiste Kikwaya Eluo, S.J. (Astronomer), Rev. Giuseppe Koch, S.J. (Librarian), Br. Robert J. Macke, S.J. (Astronomer), Rev. Alessandro Omizzolo (Astronomer). 

Specola Vaticana

V-00120 Vatican City State - ITALY

Tel.:+39 06 69 88 5266

Services and Resources

The site presents several sections on different topics: History of Church and Science; Galileo; Science, Theology and Philosophy; Church and Science Today; Cosmology; Science, Religion and Society; Life in the Universe.
Each section offers resources available online (documents, videos, articles, interviews). Many articles refer to the Vatican Observatory Foundation's blog. Some sections offer materials selected from recommended sites (including
The "Educational Resources" section is under construction and will contain useful materials for educators and teachers.

Religious Confession

The institution is promoted by the Holy See and entrusted to the Jesuits.

Content quality review




Assessed on: March 2022