The rector’s greeting

Between faith and science

05 May 2023

“Inside every real scientist is something of the scribe, the priest, the prophet and the mystic. True faith and true knowledge are born allies, pillars for one another”, said Monsignor Géza Kuminetz, Rector Magnificus of the Pázmány Péter Catholic University, to Pope Francis at the beginning of his meeting with the academic and cultural world.

The university, he explained, “despite being nearly 400 years old, is celebrating, this academic year, the 30th anniversary of its foundation after the fall of communism”. This is also why the Pope’s visit, affirmed the rector, “is a special honour for our university as it is for the other ecclesiastical and lay academic institutions present here today”, and for “the representatives of culture, of education and of university research work”.

The Holy Father’s personal presence, he noted, is the “sign of the important role science plays not only in church life, but also in social life”. Thus, he continued, “in our Catholic universities we seek to gather the ideal seeds of God the creator and saviour, hidden in creation and in revelation, and to categorize them according to the holistic conception of the truth which characterizes the Catholic ideal of science. This has common sense as its starting point, then the positive sciences, philosophy, theology and mysticism. Its fulfilment is God’s beatific vision”.

“With the help of science we don’t just want to understand; we also want to do the right thing, that is, to build a humane and solidary civilization, a sustainable culture and environment”, concluded the rector. And it is “with a humble heart that we can climb not only the mountain of the Lord but also the mountain of science”.