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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.

 

International Day of Peace – 21 September

Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on 21 September. The General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, both within and among all nations and peoples.

The United Nations Member States adopted the 17 Sustainable Development Goals in 2015 because they understood that it would not be possible to build a peaceful world if steps were not taken to achieve economic and social development for all people everywhere, and ensure that their rights were protected.  The Sustainable Goals cover a broad range of issues, including poverty, hunger, health, education, climate change, gender equality, water, sanitation, energy, environment and social justice.

Sustainable Development Goal 16 “Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions” calls for promoting peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, providing access to justice for all and building effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.

A peaceful society is one where there is justice and equality for everyone. Peace will enable a sustainable environment to take shape and a sustainable environment will help promote peace.

2018 Theme: “The Right to Peace – The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70” 

The theme celebrates the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a milestone document in the history of human rights. Drafted by representatives with different legal and cultural backgrounds from all regions of the world, the Declaration was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris on 10 December 1948 as a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations.The Universal Declaration – the most translated document in the world, available in more than 500 languages – is as relevant today as it was on the day that it was adopted.

“It is time all nations and all people live up to the words of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which recognizes the inherent dignity and equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human race. This year marks the 70th anniversary of that landmark document.” — Secretary-General António Guterres

Source: Text & Image: UN

 

24th Sunday of Year B

When the word ‘GOD’ is pronounced, several images can come to the minds of different people.
Each person has, in some way, his or her own God.
Of course, everyone claims it is the ‘true’ God, yet he is perceived in many ways.

Is it a question of choosing the kind of God one believes in?
Does it come to selecting a favourite image of God and clinging to it?
Or is it not rather being touched by him in a personal way and being faithful to this revelation?

The first reading and the Psalm of this Sunday (24th Sunday of Year B) give us an insight into who God is,
what he wants to be for us personally.

“The Lord comes to my help.”   (Is.50:7,9)
“The Lord listens to my prayer,
he bends down to listen to me.
Our God is tenderhearted;
he saved me when I was brought to my knees.
The Lord has treated me kindly.
He has rescued me from death, my eyes from tears
and my feet from stumbling.” (Ps.116:1-8)
 
The prophet Isaiah and the author of this Psalm have passed on this revelation to us
for our own inspiration, today, and tomorrow, and… all the tomorrows to come!
 
Note: Another reflection is available on a different theme in French at: https://image-i-nations.com/24e-dimanche-de-lannee-b/

Source: Images: 123RF.com   crossandcrowntx.com

 

 

World Suicide Prevention Day – 10 September

History of World Suicide Prevention Day
It’s a tragic situation, with the death toll coming in at 42,773 people committing suicide each year in the United States alone, and for each one of those 25 people made the attempt. Over the world it’s even greater, an estimated 800,000 people commit suicide each year throughout the world, which is one every 40 seconds. What’s incredible is that just like the US statistic, it’s estimated that 25 times that attempt it, 4 million people over the world every year. There’s something of a ripple down effect that happens as well, those bereaved by the loss of a loved one to suicide are themselves more likely to commit suicide.

Thankfully there are organizations like the World Health Organization who fight to combat this epidemic. With the philosophy of ‘Connect, Communicate, Care’ they work to create a world in which suicide rates are reduced or even eliminated.

How to celebrate World Suicide Prevention Day
Celebrating World Suicide Prevention Day involves working to help fight suicide. One of the most effective techniques for this is following the ideals listed above. Connect with those who you discover may be in some form of emotional distress or considering suicide. Let them know they aren’t alone, and feel free to share bits of yourself in return, true connection requires a sharing, and those who are considering suicide are often adept at detecting false ones.

You also have to open the venues of Communication, to be able to truly let others feel like you’re a safe place they can come to and be taken seriously without judgement. Too often are those suffering from real debilitating depression and suicidal ideation met with comments like “You’re just making it up” or “You’re being melodramatic”, when in fact their struggles are very real. World Suicide Prevention Day encourages you to truly care about those around you, and to work to help end the epidemic before it claims someone you love.

Source: Text: DAYSoftheYEAR.com Image: inspiremalibu.com

 

International Literacy Day – 8 September

The United Nations’ (UN) International Literacy Day annually falls on September 8 to raise people’s awareness of and concern for literacy issues in the world.

International Literacy Day highlights the importance of literacy in areas such as health and education. International Literacy Day highlights the importance of literacy in areas such as health and education

Background
According to UNESCO, about 774 million adults lack the minimum literacy skills. One in five adults is still not literate and two-thirds of them are women. About 75 million children are out-of-school and many more attend irregularly or drop out. However, literacy is also a cause for celebration on the day because there are nearly four billion literate people in the world.

The UN General Assembly proclaimed a 10-year period beginning on January 1, 2003, as the United Nations Literacy Decade. The assembly also welcomed the International Plan of Action for the Decade and decided for UNESCO to take a coordinating role in activities at an international level within the decade’s framework. On International Literacy Day each year, UNESCO reminds the international community of the status of literacy and adult learning globally. This day was first celebrated on September 8, 1966.

Source: Text: timeanddate.com Images: Wikipedia

 

23rd Sunday of Year B

 

A COMMUNICATION department might easily choose
such an illustration to advertise a coming workshop.


And, waiting for the lecturer, a scene such as this one
may be… well, the norm!

Nowadays, for many people, communication refers mostly to the ‘tools’ of communication but it is a simplified definition indeed.

The gospel text of this Sunday (23rd Sunday of Year B – Mk.7:31-37) helps us to reflect on COMMUNICATION in a different way.
The text presents us with the scene of Jesus healing a man who is deaf and who has a speech impediment.
His situation is one of being deprived of the ability to hear and the power to speak properly –
a sad condition indeed.

I like to imagine the condition of this man once he has been cured by Jesus…
It seems to me that he would delight in listening, he would pay attention to the sounds and voices.
And, slowly learning to speak, he would probably utter words with care while anticipating the outcome of what he is going to day.

Delight, attention, care, anticipation… are these not important ingredients of a good communication?

  • Delighting in what we can hear…
  • Paying attention to those who speak to us…
  • Being careful in what we say so as not to hurt…
  • Foreseeing what may result from the words spoken…

The gesture of Jesus is one healing and of liberation –
liberation for the give and take of sharing among people.
In this parable, perhaps there is more than meets the eye!

Note: Another reflection is available on a different theme in French at: https://image-i-nations.com/23e-dimanche-de-lannee-b/

Source: Images: gograph.com   idealo.de

 

International Day of Charity – 5 September

The International Day of Charity was conceived as a Hungarian civil society initiative supported by the Hungarian Parliament and Government in 2011, to enhance visibility, organize special events, and in this way to increase solidarity, social responsibility and public support for charity.

September 5 was chosen in order to commemorate the anniversary of the passing away of Mother Teresa of Calcutta,[2] who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 « for work undertaken in the struggle to overcome poverty and distress, which also constitute a threat to peace. »

Source: Text: Wikipedia

In the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development adopted in September 2015, the United Nations recognizes that eradicating poverty in all its forms and dimensions, including extreme poverty, is the greatest global challenge and an indispensable requirement for sustainable development.

The Agenda also calls for a spirit of strengthened global solidarity, focused in particular on the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable. It also acknowledges the role of the diverse private sector, ranging from micro-enterprises to cooperatives to multinationals, and that of civil society organizations and philanthropic organizations in the implementation of the new Agenda.

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set forth in the Agenda can be grouped into six critical areas: people, planet, prosperity, peace, and partnership. They have the potential to transform our lives and our planet by providing the framework needed for philanthropic institutions to enable all people to contribute to the betterment of our world.

Source: Text: UN Image: nationaltoday.com

 

22nd Sunday of Year B

« It is a question of perspective… »
These words are sometimes spoken by someone who does not agree with a statement from somebody else.
That person does not want to express disapproval outright.
He, or she, does not want to manifest too bluntly a difference of opinion, or taste.
But, the person wants to distance him/herself from the affirmation heard.

It could be a temptation to react in this way to the texts of the gospel.
Jesus’ example invites us to a completely different attitude.
In the scene of this Sunday (22nd Sunday of Year B – Mc.7:1-8.14-15.21-23),
we see him responding with force to the Pharisees and scribes who challenge the attitude of his apostles.

What we see happening is, yes, a change of perspective, but much more than that.
Jesus leads them to change their focus from the following of traditions for traditions’ sake
to a genuine faithfulness to God’s message.
He calls his audience to move from appearances to the heart.
It is quite a change indeed!

Nowadays more than ever our society focuses on appearances.
‘Image-making’ has become an art and success in business, politics, entertainment, depends very much on this.
The gospel does NOT!

We are faced with the on-going challenge to move

  • from the outward expressions to the inner reality,
  • from what is manifest to what is hidden,
  • from what is superficial to what lies in the depths of ourselves and others –
    • the place where God is present and where our true self is being shaped by his Spirit…

“Listen and understand. What goes into someone’s mouth does not defile them,
but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles them…
The things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them.”

A change of perspective indeed!

Note: Another reflection is available in French on a different theme at: https://image-i-nations.com/22e-dimanche-de-lannee-b/

Source: Image: twitter.com

World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation – 1st September

Pope Francis has asked Catholics and others throughout the world to pray this day and until the Feast of St Francis on 4th October for the care of creation, in line with his recent encyclical Laudato Si.

According to a letter from the Pope announcing the annual World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, this time “offers to individual believers and to the community a precious opportunity to renew our personal participation in this vocation as custodians of creation, raising to God our thanks for the marvellous works that He has entrusted to our care, invoking his help for the protection of creation and his mercy for the sins committed against the world in which we live.” (Letter from the Vatican, 6th August 2015)

The Orthodox Church also honours 1st September as a Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, and Pope Francis notes his hope that this should become an annual occurrence so that it “will be a valuable opportunity to bear witness to our growing communion with our orthodox brothers. We live in a time where all Christians are faced with identical and important challenges and we must give common replies to these in order to appear more credible and effective.  Therefore it is my hope that this Day can involve, in some way, other Churches and ecclesial Communities and be celebrated in union with the initiatives that the World Council of Churches is promoting on this issue.” (ibid)

Source : Text : World Methodist Council  Image: nyfaithformation.org

 

 

International Overdose Awareness Day – 31 August

International Overdose Awareness Day is a global campaign that works towards preventing overdose, reducing the stigma associated with it, and providing support to families and loved ones of overdose victims. The unofficial awareness day is observed every year on August 31.

The day was established in 2001 by Australians Sally J. Finn and Peter Streker as a way to commemorate those who have lost their lives to overdose, and to support the loved ones whose lives have been affected by drug abuse.

Since 2012, the responsibility of organizing International Overdose Awareness Day has been taken over by the Penington Institute, an Australian non-profit health organization. Despite its Australian roots, the day is now observed all over the world.

Recognizing Symptoms of Overdose
Medical professionals define overdose as the accidental or intentional use of a drug or a substance such as alcohol or a narcotic beyond the recommended dosage. An overdose can have serious consequences, with effects ranging from mild disorientation to seizures, brain injury, and death.

Part of International Overdose Awareness Day’s agenda is to spread information about how to detect signs of substance abuse and overdose, and what to do when encountering a person who may be having an adverse reaction to a drug. Disorientation, agitation, difficulty in breathing, and vomiting can be signs of overdose and should not be ignored.

A Global Problem
Overdose is an increasing global problem. A 2014 report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) estimates that about 183,000 people succumb to overdose around the world every year. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an American public health organization, drug overdose is the leading cause of accidental deaths in the United States.

A vast majority of overdose deaths occur due to opioid abuse. Opioids are a class of drugs that reduce the intensity of pain by interacting with proteins called opioids found in the human brain, spinal cord, and other organs. Opiates include illegal substances like heroin, as well as legally prescribed medication such as oxycodone, codeine, and morphine.

Source: Text: timeanddate.com Image: Latino Public Radio

International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances – 30 August

Enforced disappearance has frequently been used as a strategy to spread terror within the society. The feeling of insecurity generated by this practice is not limited to the close relatives of the disappeared, but also affects their communities and society as a whole.

Enforced disappearance has become a global problem and is not restricted to a specific region of the world. Once largely the product of military dictatorships, enforced disappearances can nowadays be perpetrated in complex situations of internal conflict, especially as a means of political repression of opponents. Of particular concern are:

the ongoing harassment of human rights defenders, relatives of victims, witnesses and legal counsel dealing with cases of enforced disappearance; the use by States of counter-terrorist activities as an excuse for breaching their obligations;
and the still widespread impunity for enforced disappearance.

Special attention must also be paid to specific groups of especially vulnerable people, like children and people with disabilities.

On 21 December 2010, by its resolution 65/209 the UN General Assembly expressed its deep concern about the increase in enforced or involuntary disappearances in various regions of the world, including arrest, detention and abduction, when these are part of or amount to enforced disappearances, and by the growing number of reports concerning harassment, ill-treatment and intimidation of witnesses of disappearances or relatives of persons who have disappeared.

By the same resolution the Assembly welcomed the adoption of the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, and decided to declare 30 August the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances, to be observed beginning in 2011.

Missing Persons
Since 1999 in Kosovo more than 6,000 people have been registered as missing. The UN Mission in Kosovo, UNMIK, together with OHCHR has supported the creating of a missing persons’ resource centre.

Source: Text: UN Image: OHCHR