Review: Jonathan Park: Ep. 31 – The Midnight Prowler

For more Jonathan Park reviews, click here.

Plot Summary:

The Parks and Brenans realize the need for a Creation Response Team — a group dedicated to revealing the truth of the Creator to the world. The group completes their training at the Grand Canyon, only to use their new found skills against an intruder who steals some import fossils. (Taken from here.)

Topics include:

  • Nautiloids
  • Redwall Limestone
  • Coral Heads
  • Grand Canyon

The Study Guide for Episode 31 is here: jp_vol3_study_guide_epi31

Background Information

The Jonathan Park CDs are produced by Vision Forum Ministries.  Through these CDs, VF hope to ‘provide children and adults with scientific evidence that is in harmony with the Word of God’.  [Which raises the questions, ‘What does “in harmony” mean?’ and ‘What do they do with scientific evidence that is not in harmony with the Word of God?’]

Tagline: This is our Father’s world, God created it; we can explore it, so live the adventure!

NOTE: The producers of this series neglect to reference their information in any form.  No references is ever given either on the CD or in the Study Guide for ANY information presented in the series.  Even the voice actors of the series are not given any credit anywhere.  We only know that the series is a production of Vision Forum Ministries.

Topics in this episode



The Story:

The Park and Brenan families are whitewater rafting down the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon on a Creation Response Team training session.  They hope to find evidence for the Flood, namely, nautiloids and coral heads.  They stop at Nautiloid Canyon.

Meanwhile, back at the camp, Miles Morgan tells officers  – who are there to warn them about a bear – that they are running a training camp for a Response Team.

The specific kind of nautiloids the team is looking for is orthocone nautiloids.  (1:00-3:00)

The Facts:

Nautiloid Canyon is found on Mile 34.8 on the Colorado River and yes, there are Grand Canyon Rafting Vacations!

More information about orthocones can be found here. It is important to note that according to mainstream science, orthocones existed from the Late Cambrian to the Late Triassic.  In other words, they existed roughly between 500 – 200 million years ago.

Miles’ answer to the officers is not completely honest.  Why doesn’t he tell them that it is a Creation Response Team?  Why withhold that bit of pertinent information?

[Click here to return to list of Topics.]


Redwall Limestone

The Story:

There is a layer in the Grand Canyon called the Redwall Limestone, a vast layer that stretches from northern Arizona to Utah.  A six-foot-thick section of it is called the Whitmore Nautiloid Bed, which is where we find the fossils. Evolutionists believe that this was deposited over a long period of time, but there is convincing evidence to suggest (even to non-Creationists) that this layer was deposited very rapidly.

The nautiloids have all been fossilised.  With the soft part gone, their shells turned into minerals.  They must be covered quickly in mud and water to be fossilised.  If the conditions are right, the materials surrounding the shell will begin to replace the cells that make up the nautiloid. This is strong evidence for a catastrophic burial instead of a slow, gradual process. If these nautiloids were buried slowly they would show signs of deterioration.  The fossils at the Redwall Limestone are so well-fossilised, they must have been buried quickly.

Dr Park says that ‘they’ (who? scientists?) estimate there must be about a billion nautiloids all throughout the Redwall Limestone layer.

Another interesting thing about the nautiloids is the non-random distribution: all the nautiloids  are facing the same way.  This suggests activity from strong water currents.  It looks as though an underwater avalanche called the Sediment Gravity Flow came through and smashed into a giant school of nautiloids.

Also, there are nautiloids of different ages (some young, some old) so they didn’t all die naturally, but from one huge event.

Dr Park then tells the team to gather some data and ‘excavate a few of these things’ to take back with them. (3:00-6:38)

The Facts:

Layers of the Grand Canyon

Layers of the Grand Canyon

The Redwall Limestone is only one of many layers found in the Grand Canyon. It is on average 335 million years old. (See Figure)

Here is the relevant information from wikipedia:

Redwall is composed of thick-bedded, dark brown to bluish gray limestone and dolomite with white chert nodules mixed in.[31] It was laid down in a retreating shallow tropical sea near the equator during 40 million years of the early to middle Mississippian.[36] Many fossilized crinoids, brachiopods, bryozoans, horn corals, nautiloids, and sponges, along with other marine organisms such as large and complex trilobites have been found in the Redwall.[31] In late Mississippian time, the Grand Canyon region was slowly uplifted and the Redwall was partly eroded away. A Karst topography consisting of caves, sinkholes, and subterrainian river channels resulted but were later filled with more limestone.[8] The exposed surface of Redwall gets its characteristic color from rainwater dripping from the iron-rich redbeds of the Supai and Hermit shale that lie above.[31]

I was unable to find extensive information about Whitmore Nautiloid Bed.

I was also unable to verify the claim that all the nautiloids are facing the same way.  How many shells were observed and from how many localities and how big of an area?

Even if this layer was formed by strong water current, it does not mean that it was a global event.  It is up to the young-Earth Creationists to prove that it was a global event AND to prove that it happened only c. 4500 years ago.

It is illegal to dig up, relocate, and/or remove fossils from Grand Canyon National Park!

[Click here to return to list of Topics.]


Coral Heads

The Story:

There is a little animal called a polyp that lives in the ocean.  These polyps have a little hole that takes in food and gets rid of waste.  The hole is surrounded by tentacles.  Around it grows a hard shell made from calcium carbonate.  This is the animal we call coral.  Coral reefs are made up of large numbers of these animals that group themselves together into colonies called coral heads.  In each of these colonies there are hundreds and thousands of these polyps that are linked together by a connective tissue.

Why do find them in the Canyon?  Good question!  Obviously, they didn’t grow there because there isn’t a coral reef there. That tells us that they were picked up and deposited there from somewhere else.

One usually finds the heavy coral at the bottom and the nautiloids closer to the surface.  Yet, they are deposited together in the Redwall limestone. It looks like fast flowing currents picked up the nautiloids and the corals and deposited them together.  This fits in with the Bible account.

Dr Park then suggests collecting some data and removing some coral heads to put in their museum!


The Facts:

It is illegal to dig up, relocate, and/or remove fossils from Grand Canyon National Park!

Yes, there are horn corals found in the Grand Canyon.  According to mainstream scientists, the Redwall Limestone layer was laid down in a retreating shallow tropical sea near the equator about 350 million years ago.  A shallow tropical sea would be ideal for corals to grow.

The topmost layer at Grand Canyon is the Kaibab Limestone, which, according to mainstream science, is 250 million years old. Dinosaurs did not come onto the scene for another 20 million years, ie, about 230 million years ago.  IF the Redwall Limestone layer was deposited during the Flood as young-Earth Creationists claim, why are there mainly marine fossils?  Why are there NO dinosaur fossils at all in Grand Canyon?

[Click here to return to list of Topics.]


Grand Canyon

The Story:

Q: How could the Flood both deposit and cut through layers at the same time?

A: When the layers were first deposited, they were very soft. If the canyon had been carved while they were still soft like that, the rock faces would still have been pliable as the waters swept materials away – the layers would have slid down as the water cut the material away.  There are abrupt edges on the exposed layers.  They were hard enough that they stood up in a vertical face.  It seems to indicate a period of time between the flood and when the canyon was carved.

There is good evidence to suggest that there might have been several lake basins that formed from water collected in natural dams.  Some scientists estimate that these lakes held enough water to fill Lake Michigan.  They believe that eventually these dams broke and carved out Grand Canyon very rapidly.  Many Creation geologists do not believe that the Grand Canyon was cut during the flood. (19:00-20:27)

The Facts:

The statement that Grand Canyon was carved out by the retreating waters of the Flood was made by Steve Austin of the Institute for Creation Research.  Here is the response to his claim.  (This was addressed in Ep. 28: The Eye of the Storm, Part 2.)

For Further Reading, I strongly recommend the following:

Grand Canyon Rock Layers

The Grand Canyon and Creation Science

[Click here to return to list of Topics.]



The Creation Response Team’s training camp at Grand Canyon was nothing more than a Young-Earth Creation indoctrination session.  The word ‘evidence’ was used over and over again when talking about the formation of the Grand Canyon by a worldwide flood, when in actual fact, the evidence was presented in a way to fit a young-Earth interpretation .  Anything which pointed to an old earth was either omitted, or not mentioned in full.

A portion of the program was dedicated to showing the various roles and tasks for the Creation Response Team.  Jim delegated the Team members’ various roles and then said that Martha and Angela have the most important roles of all, but he didn’t exactly say what their roles were!  We are led to conclude that the women are to minister to their husbands and families.  Later, there was a discussion on the roles that God has given to men and women.  Men are to be the providers, protectors and spiritual leaders – no Bible references was given for this! – and women are to organise their homes, love and nurture their children, and be supporters of their husbands (based on a reading of Titus 2:4-5).  The girls were assured that living an adventurous life is acceptable, but that once they started a family, God would make caring for their family their first priority.

The script in this episode was much more stilted and predictable than usual, which is okay for children, but older listeners may find it cheesy and tiresome. Much more problematic, however, is the apparent lack of research that has gone into the writing. A simple search would have brought up the fact that taking fossils from the Grand Canyon is illegal.  This lack of attention to a minor but relevant detail is dismaying and is more proof of the producers’ bias for promoting a young-Earth Creation worldview at the expense of moral, scholastic and scientific integrity.

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About yewnique

I am a Malaysian-born woman who is married to an Australian and now live in Melbourne, Australia. I am a mother to four children. I home school. I like reading, writing, and cooking -- not necessarily in that order. I care about grammar and spelling, but am nonchalant about the Oxford Comma. I try to follow Christ's teachings.

Posted on Sunday, December 5th, 2010, in Jonathan Park, Jonathan Park Reviews, Vision Forum and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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