Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A saintly Doodle

Did you see today's Google Doodle?

It honors the 374th birthday (today) of Nicholas Steno - the "father of geology." I didn't know a whole lot about him, but I thought you might be interested in what I found.

Born in 1638 in Copenhagen, Denmark, Steno was a pioneering scientist in geology, paleontology and anatomy. His contributions to furthering a scientific understanding of the makeup of our planet and to the inner workings of biological organisms (including the human heart) is unparalleled. He was truly a pioneer in the field of science.

Oh, and he was a Catholic bishop, too.
Bl. Nicholas Steno

In fact, Steno - a convert to Catholicism from the Lutheran faith at the age of 29 - was beatified by the Catholic Church in 1988. His feast day on the Church calendar is December 5. In addition to his tireless efforts of scientific exploration, Bl. Steno was hailed as a living saint during his lifetime. He navigated the difficult terrain of Church and secular politics during his lifetime and did so with an endearing sincerity and as a shining example of Christian charity. His political enemies made fun of his piety, but he steadfastly persevered in living out the Faith in inspiring ways.

You've gotta love it when something routine like your favorite search engine leads you to learn more about your faith. Small graces. Thanks, Google, for honoring Bl. Nicholas Steno today!