Worship Blog: July 20: The Higgs in Church

Week Three of our July Series on Science and Religion takes us to the Higgs Boson—the particle recently discovered at CERN. Some of the questions we ponder together: What are the metrics we use to determine the progress we are making in our understanding of the universe? (Is there a “metric” people of faith can use to accurately measure their spiritual progress?)

Scriptures for the day:       Psalm 19       Genesis 11:1-9            John 6: 25-35

Our speaker this week is Sarah Demers Konezny. Sarah is an Associate Professor of Physics at Yale University where she has been on the faculty since 2009.  She received her bachelor’s degree from Harvard University in 1999 and her PhD atJuly 20 Sarah Pic the University of Rochester in 2005 for a thesis relating to the top quark on the CDF experiment at Fermilab.  Since 2006 she has been a member of the ATLAS Collaboration at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider in Geneva, Switzerland, where she uses tau leptons to search for new physics signatures and co-leads one of the Higgs Boson analysis groups.

Sarah will share a physicist’s perspective on the discovery of the Higgs Boson and where particle physics currently sits in the quest to understand the universe. She is with us as part of our ongoing conversation between Science and Religion in July. We are not certain there will be a manuscript available. We do hope to post her message on our web site at umcburlington.com.


Here is a very straight forward description of the Higgs Field and the Higgs Boson: What’s a Higgs Boson?

BBC Documentary: The Hunt for the Higgs

Mark Demers

Want to talk about sex, politics, spirituality? So do I. I grew up in a religious home in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Our country was reeling from assassinations and the devastation of the Viet Nam War. Looking for something beautiful, I got a degree in music, married the love of my life and had children. Looking for God, I then went to seminary. Looking for something that might transform the world, I became a local church pastor. Now, I’m always looking for people who want to talk about important things. I cherish conversations with emerging leaders, people who are antsy to try an idea they believe would change the world for the better. I’d would love to hear from you.