Donald J. Patterson

Faith and Computer Science

My view of the relationship between my faith and my professional work

Here is a short essay on my view about how my faith impacts the study of computer science.  This is something that I think is important, but is also something that is in flux in my life.

“I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure.”

In the movie Chariots of Fire, the character representing Olympic runner Eric Liddel misses a prayer meeting while pursuing his running career and is rebuked by his sister for not attending a church service. When challenged, Liddel responds with the above quote and in the process reflects a view that worship and kingdom-building are not just done in the context of church but can also be done in the mundane. This is my basic belief as well: that the work of teaching computer science, building computational systems and studying their use, can be a pursuit that is fundamentally honoring to God. ( full text )

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