Época, a major Brazilian newsweekly, recently devoted four pages to the subject of teaching creationism in the state of Rio de Janeiro, at the insistence of Governor Roshina Garotinho. According to the report, “One of the main focuses of teaching creationism in Brazil is the private network of Seventh-day Adventist schools and universities.”
Creationism has surfaced as an issue in the state of Rio de Janeiro because that state’s government has, since 2002, offered religion classes in the public schools, in which creationism is often presented. That was begun by then-Governor Anthony Garothino, husband of the current chief executive.
“The journalists, seeking impartiality, dedicated time to listen to the authorities connected with the institution mentioned as a reference by Governor Rosinha,” commented the rector of the Brazil Adventist University (BAU), Professor André Marcos Pasini.
The magazine pointed out that five years ago BAU set up the Nucleus of Origin Studies to orient some 4,000 students. It also stated that within the graduate curriculum there is a course entitled “Science of Origins,” taught by six professors from various areas. Professors and students were interviewed confirming the Creationist theory for the origin of the planet.
Journalists also interviewed Professor Ruy Vieira, president of the Brazilian Creationist Society, which has 1,000 members. Vieira, a Seventh-day Adventist, affirmed that, “Our objective is to [promote] this idea throughout the country.” The society translates and publishes books on this topic for all age levels.