Francis Collins: A Good and Faithful Servant


BioLogos congratulates Dr. Francis Collins for his incredible service at the National Institutes of Health! Francis has announced that he will be stepping down from his role as Director, an appointment he has held since 2009 through multiple administrations.

The accolades are pouring in from all directions, naming his incredible scientific accomplishments, from the Human Genome project to the COVID vaccines.

Many also mention his character and his Christian faith. He is known throughout Washington for the integrity, service, and humility that he brings to his work. He is also known for his warm friendship and guitar playing (see Francis Collins and theologian N.T. Wright sing “Genesis).

Since telling his story of coming to Christ in his 2006 book Language of God, he has become known for embodying the possibility of harmony between world-class science with Christ-centered faith. He went on to win the prestigious Templeton Prize for science and religion in 2020.

Francis Collins speaking at BioLogos Conference in 2019Ultimately, Francis’ greatest legacy will be the lives he has changed (as I said in my video tribute last year). His early scientific discoveries alone have had an incredible impact. Just last week, I had dinner with a man whose wife is taking medication for cystic fibrosis, medication based on Francis’ research. He said “because of Francis Collins, I will have decades more of marriage with my wife, and we are able to have children.” They are expecting twins in a few months, a boy and a girl.

In 2009, Francis Collins founded BioLogos to be a place to address the questions of the next generation on science and faith, particularly young people in a crisis of faith over science. Today, science is still one of the top reasons that young people leave the church, whether the issue is evolution, vaccines, or climate. But today, BioLogos is here. Over 2 million people a year visit the website, listen to our podcast, attend our events, and use our high school curriculum. Our Common Question “Should Christians get vaccinated?” is a top search result in Google and has been viewed by over 250,000 people.

Our Insights videos tell the story of Francis Collins and others who have struggled with science and faith; young people can see that they are not alone. One person recently wrote to us “I went through this exact faith crisis in college, and I’m walking through it with a couple of my friends now. Love what you guys do at BioLogos.”

 
Francis Collins tells the story of his conversion from atheism to faith as a young doctor.

Our Insights videos tell the story of Francis Collins and others who have struggled with science and faith; young people can see that they are not alone. One person recently wrote to us “I went through this exact faith crisis in college, and I’m walking through it with a couple of my friends now. Love what you guys do at BioLogos.”

Francis Collins’ story, and the work he launched at BioLogos, continue to inspire authentic faith for today.


Deborah Haarsma
About the Author

Deborah Haarsma

Deborah Haarsma is President of BioLogos. She is a frequent speaker on modern science and Christian faith at research universities, churches, and public venues like the National Press Club. Her work appears in several recent books, including Four Views on Creation, Evolution, and Design and Christ and the Created Order.  She wrote the book Origins with her husband and fellow physicist, Loren Haarsma, presenting the agreements and disagreements among Christians regarding the history of life and the universe.  She edited the anthology Delight in Creation: Scientists Share Their Work with the Church with Rev. Scott Hoezee. Previously, Haarsma served as professor and chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Calvin University.  She is an experienced research scientist, with several publications in the Astrophysical Journal and the Astronomical Journal on extragalactic astronomy and cosmology. She has studied large galaxies, galaxy clusters, the curvature of space, and the expansion of the universe using telescopes around the world and in orbit.  Haarsma completed her doctoral work in astrophysics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her undergraduate work in physics and music at Bethel University. She and Loren enjoy science fiction and classical music, and live in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
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