John Glenn, American astronaut, on his trips to space: 'To look at creation and not believe in God is impossible'

John Glenn, the American astronaut who passed away on Thursday at the age of 95, was a fervent believer in God who said that his trip to space has strengthened his faith.

Glenn was the first American man to orbit the Earth, and he became the world's oldest astronaut in 1998 when he took one last trip to space at the age of 77.

(Reuters/Mike Munden)Featured in the image is astronaut John Glenn

"To look up out at this kind of creation and not believe in God is to me impossible. It just strengthens my faith." He told reporters at a news conference in 1998.

Glenn, a devout Presbyterian, once said that he prayed daily while he was in orbit. When he was in the U.S. Congress, he attended the National Presbyterian Church.

The astronaut did not see any conflict between science and faith, and he advocated for evolution to be taught in public schools.

"I don't see that I'm any less religious by the fact that I can appreciate the fact that science just records that we change with evolution and time, and that's a fact. It doesn't mean it's less wondrous and it doesn't mean that there can't be some power greater than any of us that has been behind and is behind whatever is going on," he said.

Glenn, who was also a U.S. Marine and combat pilot, served as a U.S. senator representing Ohio for over two decades. He will lie in Ohio's capitol building preceding a celebration in honor of his military and government service as well as his voyages to space. His remains will be interred at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington D.C.

There were other astronauts, like Glenn, whose faith had been strengthened after a trip to space.

The crew of Apollo 8 read from the book of Genesis on the first flight around the moon. On the first moon landing, one of Buzz Aldrin's first acts was to serve himself communion. Apollo astronaut Jim Irwin became an evangelist before he died in 1991.

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