hello

Greetings to each and everyone of you.


This section for English-speaking viewers –
and all those enjoying the culture –

has developed over the months and is now offering materials of all kinds:

texts, images, poems, videos, etc.

It will continue to provide you with rich contents week after week.

 

World Day for Safety and Health at Work – 28 April 2024

The impacts of climate change on occupational safety and health

Climate change is already having serious impacts on planetary health, human health and the world of work. As this problem intensifies, workers around the globe find themselves at an increased risk of exposure to hazards such as excessive heat, ultraviolet radiation, extreme weather events, air pollution, vector-borne diseases and agrochemicals. Numerous health conditions are linked to climate change, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, respiratory illnesses, and mental health disorders.

Promoting, respecting and realizing the fundamental principle and right at work of a safe and healthy working environment also means addressing dangerous climate change impacts in the workplace. Mainstreaming occupational safety and health (OSH) into climate policies and integrating climate concerns into OSH practices is crucial. Legislation may need re-evaluation or new regulations as climate hazards evolve.

Collaboration between governments and social partners is vital for climate mitigation and adaptation policies. The time to act is now!

On the occasion of the World Day for Safety and Health at Work 2024, the ILO has launched a new report titled « Ensuring safety and health at work in a changing climate, » which reveals alarming new data on the impact of climate change on workers’ safety and health.

 

Source: Text & Image: https://www.un.org/en/observances/work-safety-day

 

5th Sunday of Easter, Year B – 2024

Recently, I found a bookmark with a text that kept me pondering.
No author was mentioned, but the words led to a prolonged reflection.
It said: “Keep your eyes on the logic of God”.

I was asking myself: What can be considered ‘the logic of God’?
It is at that moment that I came across the gospel text for today, (John 15:1-8).
There, I read Jesus’ words saying:

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser…
Every branch that does bear fruit, he prunes to make it bear even more”.

We would think – with our human logic – that a branch bearing fruit will be left as it is.
It would be allowed to come to fruition and then the fruit would be collected.
But it seems that… God’s logic is different!

Jesus says something rather puzzling:
“Every branch that does bear fruit, the Father prunes to make it bear even more”.

This speaks of cutting out, of taking away, of letting go, of detachment, …
This is not according to our usual choices…
This does not go along the direction of our preferences…
Normally, we want to add, to increase, not to diminish or to lessen…

But then, we need to focus on the purpose of God’s doing:
“to make it bear even more”.

This is where the increase, the expansion, the growth, the fulfilment will come…
In God’s time, at God’s rhythm, in God’s way…
And our human logic has to get familiar with this…

A familiarization that may take time and adjustment.
But this may be part and parcel of the ‘more’…

And who knows what the ‘more’ may still hold in reserve for us!

 

Note: Another text is available on a different theme, in French, at: https://image-i-nations.com/5e-dimanche-de-paques-annee-b-2024/

 

Source: Image: https://insightsfromtom.com/tag/john-152/

World Day For Animals in Laboratories – 24 April

World Lab Animal Day is another name for World Day For Animals In Laboratories, observed every year on April 24 globally. The purpose of this day is to draw attention to the suffering and killing of animals that take place in laboratories all around the world.
Animals used in experiments include baboons, cats, cows, dogs, ferrets, fish, frogs, guinea pigs, hamsters, horses, llamas, mice, monkeys (such as marmosets and macaques), owls, pigs, quail, rabbits, rats and sheep.
Source: Text: Google   Image: AffairsCloud.com

For nearly a century, drug and chemical safety assessments have been based on laboratory testing involving rodents, rabbits, dogs, and other animals. Aside from the ethical issues they pose—inflicting both physical pain as well as psychological distress and suffering on large numbers of sentient creatures—animal tests are time- and resource-intensive, restrictive in the number of substances that can be tested, provide little understanding of how chemicals behave in the body, and in many cases do not correctly predict real-world human reactions. Similarly, health scientists are increasingly questioning the relevance of research aimed at “modelling” human diseases in the laboratory by artificially creating symptoms in other animal species.

It is estimated that more than 115 million animals worldwide are used in laboratory experiments every year. But because only a small proportion of countries collect and publish data concerning animal use for testing and research, the precise number is unknown. 

Within the European Union, more than 12 million animals are used each year, with France, Germany and the United Kingdom being the top three animal using countries.

What’s the alternative?

If lack of human relevance is the fatal flaw of “animal models,” then a switch to human-relevant research tools is the logical solution. The National Research Council in the United States has expressed its vision of “a not-so-distant future in which virtually all routine toxicity testing would be conducted in human cells or cell lines”, and science leaders around the world have echoed this view.

Source: Text & Image: https://www.hsi.org/news-resources/about/

World Book and Copyright Day – 23 April

By championing books and copyright, UNESCO stands up for creativity, diversity and equal access to knowledge, with the work across the board – from the Creative Cities of Literature network to promoting literacy and mobile learning and advancing Open Access to scientific knowledge and educational resources. With the active involvement of all stakeholders: authors, publishers, teachers, librarians, public and private institutions, humanitarian NGOs and the mass media, and all those who feel motivated to work together in this world celebration of books and authors, World Book and Copyright Day has become a platform to rally together millions of people all around the world.

Books, in all their forms, allow us to learn and to keep ourselves informed. They also entertain us and help us to understand the world, while offering a window into otherness.

For books to be able to unleash their full potential, it is essential that they reflect the linguistic diversity of our world. That is why, as part of the International Decade of Indigenous Languages (IDIL), launched in 2022, UNESCO is supporting the publication of books in both Indigenous and regional languages.

 

Source: Text & Image:  https://www.unesco.org/en/days/world-book-and-copyright#

4th Sunday of Easter, Year B – 2024

Nowadays, some people speak of our ways as those of a ‘throw away culture’.
It seems that people buy a lot of objects, and they soon throw them away.
They acquire many items and discard them readily.
Not much is precious to them, it looks as if nothing is of real value.

Sad to say, this mentality sometimes spreads to the way we relate to people.
We do not value who they are, and what they can contribute to society.
Short-term relationships are prevailing, and enduring commitment are not the norm.

This is what has led me to notice a section of today’s gospel text (John 10:11-18).
It speaks of the hired man who acts as a shepherd.
Seeing a wolf coming to attack the sheep, that man runs away, and Jesus explains the reason for this attitude:
“The man does not care for the sheep”. (Another translation says: “He has no concern for the sheep”).

Jesus repeats and insists, saying:
“I am the good shepherd… I lay down my life for my sheep”.

Someone ready to give his/her life for another, surely that person is precious to him/her.
The life of the other person is of great value.
It means so much that one is ready to sacrifice his/her own existence to save another.

This is how precious we are to God.
This is really amazing, so amazing that we find it difficult to believe…

Long ago, God had given this very message to his prophet Isaiah who was to say in God’s name:
“You are precious in my eyes…
You are honored and I love you” (Isaiah 43:40).

This is GOD speaking to each one of us!
We are precious to him, and he loves us –
a message spoken long ago but always valid, permanent and unconditional.

Why do we hesitate to accept this tremendous reality?

 

Note: Another text is available on a different theme, in French, at: 4è dimanche de Pâques, année B -2024

 

Source: Image: https://quotesgram.com/the-good-shepherd-jesus-quotes/

World Voice Day – 16 April

 World Voice Day (WVD) is a worldwide annual event that takes place on April 16 devoted to the celebration of the phenomenon of voice. The aim is to demonstrate the enormous importance of the voice in the daily lives of all people. Voice is a critical aspect of effective and healthy communication, and World Voice Day brings global awareness to the need for preventing voice problems, rehabilitating the deviant or sick voice, training the artistic voice, and researching the function and application of voice. A goal of World Voice Day is to encourage all those who use their voice for business or pleasure to learn to take care of their voice, and know how to seek help and training, and to support research on the voice.

Voice production is studied and applied in many disciplines such as medicine, speech-language pathology, music, physics, psychologyphonetics, art, and biology.

The World Voice Day was established on April 16 with the main goals of increasing public awareness of the importance of the voice and alertness to voice problems.

This celebration started in Brazil in 1999 as the Brazilian National Voice Day. It was the result of a mixed initiative of physicians, speech-language pathologists and singing teachers that belonged to the former association ‘Sociedade Brasileira de Laringologia e Voz – SBLV’ (Brazilian Society of Laryngology and Voice), under the presidency of Dr. Nedio Steffen. This Brazilian initiative was followed by other countries, such as Argentina and Portugal, and the Brazilian National Voice Day became the International Voice Day. In the United States, the American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery officially recognized this celebration in 2002 and in that year the event obtained the name ‘World Voice Day’.

 

Source: Text: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Voice_Day#        Image: 

World Art Day – 15 April

World Art Day, a celebration to promote the development, diffusion and enjoyment of art, was proclaimed at the 40th session of UNESCO’s General Conference in 2019.

Art nurtures creativity, innovation and cultural diversity for all peoples across the globe and plays an important role in sharing knowledge and encouraging curiosity and dialogue. These are qualities that art has always had, and will always have, if we continue to support environments where artists and artistic freedom are promoted and protected. In this way, furthering the development of art also furthers our means to achieve a free and peaceful world.

Each year, on 15 April, World Art Day celebrations help reinforce the links between artistic creations and society, encourage greater awareness of the diversity of artistic expressions and highlight the contribution of artists to sustainable development. It is also an occasion to shine a light on arts education in schools, as culture can pave the way for inclusive and equitable education.

 

Source: Text & Image: https://www.unesco.org/en/days/world-art

3rd Sunday of Easter, Year B – 2024

There are gospel texts which we find difficult to understand, others we see as very demanding.
But there are some which, somehow, are encouraging.
On many occasions, the attitude of the apostles can make us feel that we are not so far from them!

They had lived for some three years with Jesus.
They had heard him teach people about many things.
They had seen him perform miracles, even raising some dead people to life.
And yet, yet… so often they did not understand him, nor recognize what he was about.

In today’s gospel text, as Jesus appears to them, his disciples think they see… a ghost ! (Luke 24:35-48).
Of course, they knew he had been tortured and had died a cruel death on a cross.
They thought – rightly so – that he had really died.
How could he be there alive before them?

He has to repeat that he is truly their Master.
He has to give them some proofs – the kind of proofs that they will understand:
he shows them his hands and feet that have been pierced,
he asks them food to eat, and he eats in front of them.

But he has to do more.
The evangelist Luke tells us:

“He opened their minds so they could understand…” 

Understand what his whole life was about.
Understand what his suffering and death were for.
Understand how they had to share with others what they had seen as witnesses do.

Perhaps we need the same kind of understanding…
The Risen Christ can open our own minds… if we ask him to do so…

 

Note: Another text is available on a different theme, in French, at: https://image-i-nations.com/3e-dimanche-de-paques-annee-b-2024/

Source: Image: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

2nd Sunday of Easter, Year B – 2024


We have four different versions of the gospel.
Matthew and Mark, Luke and John, have each written an account of Jesus’ life.
They have recorded for us the words and actions of Jesus.
We can read about his preaching, his travelling through Palestine, his healing people.

The evangelists have not written in the form of what we call nowadays ‘a biography’.
Their purpose was not to relate all the details of Jesus’ life.
Coming close to the end of his text, John reveals to us his aim in writing:

“Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples,
which are not recorded in this book.
But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God,
and that by believing you may have life in his name” (John 20:30-31).

Believing, not in a set of propositions – even if they are true.
Believing, not in a series of facts – even if they can be proved.
Believing, not in a list of events – even if they have really happened.

But believing ins SOMEONE – “Jesus as the Son of God”.

Believing in him… Trusting him… Relying on him…

John assures us that believing in this Man-God, Jesus, we will have life.
This is the very reason why Jesus came to live among us – he said it openly:

“I have come so that they (the people – all of us) may have life and have it to the full” (John 10:10).

Life now… Life later… Life for ever…
A life that exceeds all we could dream of, or hope for…

“God whose power works in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine…” (Ephesians 3:20).

 

Note: Another text is available on a different theme, in French, at: https://image-i-nations.com/2e-dimanche-de-paques-annee-b-2024/

 

Source: Images: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

Easter Sunday, The Resurrection of the Lord, Year B – 2024

 Seeing… Understanding… Believing…
The gradual process of perception…
The slowly evolving recognition…
The graced-filled experience of FAITH!

The text offered to our reflection on this Easter Sunday (John 20:1-9)
is an interesting one – interesting and inspiring!
Interesting in that it is linked to the reality of human experience.
Inspiring in how it reveals what goes beyond human experience.

John and Peter are at the tomb where Jesus has been laid.
Both of them observe a detail, something that might have escaped the notice of someone else.

We are told that having reached the place first, John (referred to as ‘the other disciple’):
“bent over and looked in at the strips of linen lying there”.

Of Peter, it is said that:
“He saw the strips of linen lying there,
as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head.
The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen”.

Emptiness… Absence… and… FAITH!

The tomb is empty, no corpse is lying there as was expected.
Jesus is… obviously absent… away…
What the two apostles see are only objects, signs pointing to a reality which they have to interpret.
They do and… they believe!

The text mentions:
“Till this moment, they had failed to understand the teaching of scripture,
that he (Jesus) must rise from the dead”.

Our own faith is also slowly evolving, our perception is gradual, as that of Peter and John was.
We, too, need signs to believe…
They will not be those of pieces of linen and cloth that have been used for Jesus’ body.

The signs given to us will be of a different nature, but no less meaningful and… convincing…
– the help received when most unexpected…
– the information needed that is discovered at the right moment…
– the solution of a problem found where it was not meant to be…
– the prevention of an accident that we deem ‘quite a miracle’…
– the resolution of a conflict that was beyond expectation…
– the healing of a relationship when all seemed lost…
and so many more astonishing happenings that prompt our doubt to yield to genuine faith!

The Risen Lord, who seemed absent, reveals his presence in those areas of emptiness that were NOT empty after all!

 

Note: Another text is available on a different theme, in French, at: https://image-i-nations.com/dimanche-de-paques-resurrection-du-seigneur-annee-b-2024/

Source: Image: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints