Holy Spirit Province Saint-Esprit
Franciscans of CanadaFranciscains du Canada

Ordo Fratrum Minorum

Made richer

Made richer


An amateur astronomer and long-time member of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Fr. Lucian Kemble is credited with discovering and describing a chain of stars that was named Kemble’s Cascade in his honour. In a time when science and faith is often perceived as being at odds with one another, Fr. Lucian had no such struggle.

In an audio recording of an interview, the interviewer poses this question to Fr. Lucian:

Tell me a bit about the relationship between your interest in astronomy and your faith.

Fr. Lucian replies:

This is a question that often intrigues people. I know people who say, “Gee, if you’re interested in science, then how can you believe […] the Bible? Or if you’re a theologian, how can you believe in science?”

They see it as a contradiction, I see it as complementary.

I have no conflict at all. One bolsters the other.

My theology is made richer by learning the real cosmos in which we live […] and vice versa; my interest in astronomy just overwhelms me sometimes with the beauty and the order and the precision and the absolute awesome wonder of the universe.

So my prayer life is just as much at the telescope as it is in the chapel.


Fr. Lucian Kemble at his telescope in Saskatchewan, 1994.