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Queen Elisabeth ll dies – 8 september 2022

Today, a great lady has died, dignified and dedicated to the service of her people, she has now left this world.

May she enjoy the happiness and peace we all long for.

 

Aujourd’hui, une grande dame est décédée, digne et dévouée au service de son people, elle a maintenant quitté ce monde.

Puisse-t-elle jouir du bonheur et de la paix que nous désirons tous et toutes.

Source: Image: The Royal Family

3rd Sunday of Advent, Year C – 2021

Waiting – there is much of this in our lives, no doubt about it.
We wait for all kinds of things to happen and for different people to come.
We anticipate some events with joy and trepidation.
And we find it difficult to wait with patience for the arrival of certain people so eager are we to see them.

In the gospel of this Sunday (Luke 3:10-18), we see people coming to John the Baptist to be baptized.
And of them, the text says:

“The people were waiting expectantly and were all wondering in their hearts
if John might possibly be the Messiah”.
 
This description reveals some joyful anticipation, some eagerness for the coming of the one they call: ‘The Messiah’.

What about us… are we waiting for someone, truly waiting, eagerly expecting this Someone?
Are we wondering in our hearts… when he will be coming, under which form he will appear?…
Do we ask ourselves whether we will recognize him?…

Every year, in this period of Advent, we are invited anew to wait for the Lord.
We no longer wonder or ask ourselves questions –
it seems that we know well the One we are waiting for, and we can put a date on his arrival: Christmas day.

But… does this ‘historical’ coming not hide a more frequent coming of God in our lives?
Of God ‘dressed’ in a different clothing than the Child Jesus…
Of God, no longer lying in a manger, but knocking at our door for help…
Of God asking for food, work, justice, dignity – all that a human being has a right to…

God does not claim these for himself – we usually give him glory and praise and thanks, do we not? 
But he asks for, no, he demands respect, justice, help, for everyone of his children.
HE, TOO, IS… WAITING…

And our period of waiting should be an answer to HIS…

 

Note: Another text is available on a different theme, in French at: https://image-i-nations.com/3e-dimanche-de-lavent-annee-c-2021/

And in a short video, also in French, Ghislaine Deslières offers us another reflection on this 3rd Sunday of Advent, Year C, at: https://youtu.be/bEtz8IfMSOA

 

Source: Images: biblepic.com    VideoHive  

World Day for Decent Work – 7 October

Workers from around the world will be holding activities to mark the 11th World Day for Decent Work on 7 October.

This year’s global theme, “Change the Rules”, highlights the deeply entrenched injustice of the global economic system alongside shrinking democratic space and deteriorating labour rights in many countries, documented in the ITUC Global Rights Index.

“The rules are stacked against working people, and that is why we have unprecedented and destructive levels of economic inequality and insecurity while a small number of global conglomerates like Amazon amass incalculable riches for a very few. There is enough wealth in the world to meet the challenges of our time – creating decent work for all, ensuring universal social protection, tackling climate change and all the other things that need to be done to ensure that people can live in dignity on a sustainable planet. But the rules need to change. And to achieve that, we need to build workers’ power. The World Day for Decent Work is an important milestone on the way to the ITUC World Congress in Copenhagen in December, where we will finalise an ambitious and comprehensive trade union agenda for change and economic renewal,” said ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow.

“Since the inaugural World Day for Decent Work in 2008, tens of millions of people have taken part in activities in more than 100 countries to celebrate the achievements of trade unions, to pay homage to those who have sacrificed so much on the front lines of struggles for democratic rights and freedoms, and to advance the cause of social and economic progress which benefits all instead of the privileged elite. This year again, unions and other progressive movements will mobilise around 7 October to show our determination to reclaim democratic space and overhaul the rules of the global economy through organising, campaigning and advocating for a better world.”

With the presidential election in Brazil taking place on 7 October, unions will be stepping up the demand for former President Lula to be released from prison. Lula was unjustly sentenced to a 12-year prison sentence and, while he was by far the most popular candidate, prevented from standing in the election.                                                                                                                                                                 

Source: Text: www.ituc-csi.org Image: giortazei.græ

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

 

International Albinism Awareness Day – 13 June

June 13 is International Albinism Awareness Day. It is a UN effort to stop the brutalities against people with albinism.

Genetic Condition
Albinism is a genetic condition resulting in little or no pigmentation in the skin, hair, and eyes. In several cultures around the world, and particularly in many African countries, people with albinism live in constant fear of murder. Others experience severe discrimination and bullying.

Murders and Mutilations
Hundreds of albinos have been brutally murdered and mutilated in African countries in the past decades. Local superstitions claim their body parts can bring luck and prosperity. Another widespread rumor is that albinos are evil spirits.

The country with the highest percentage of albinos is believed to be Tanzania. In 2013, an independent documentary called “In the Shadow of the Sun” was released. The film by director Harry Freeland tells the story of Josephat Torner from Tanzania, who has albinism. Together, they spent years traveling around Tanzania to spread information about the widely misunderstood disorder.

The documentary, along with several other films, have been powerful tools in the fight against persecution of people with albinism, which is sometimes abbreviated PWA.

The Right to Dignity
International Albinism Awareness Day was adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 18, 2014. The resolution “encourages UN Member States to continue their efforts to protect and preserve the rights of persons with albinism to life, dignity and security, as well as their right not to be subject to torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, and to continue their efforts to ensure equal access for persons with albinism to employment, education, justice and the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health.”

Source: Text: timeanddate.com Image: www.albinism.org

 

 

International Volunteer Day – 5 December

International Volunteer Day (IVD) mandated by the UN General Assembly, is held each year on 5 December. It is viewed as a unique chance for volunteers and organizations to celebrate their efforts, to share their values, and to promote their work among their communities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), United Nations agencies, government authorities and the private sector.

Apart from mobilising thousands of volunteers every year, the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme contributes to peace and development by advocating for the recognition of volunteers and working with partners to integrate volunteerism into development programming.

2017 Theme: Volunteers Act First. Here. Everywhere. 

IVD 2017’s theme #VolunteersActFirst. Here. Everywhere. recognizes the contributions of volunteers as first responders in times of crisis. Volunteers are present, all around us, answering calls in times of need, helping save lives today, and supporting those who want to continue living their lives with dignity tomorrow.

Risking their lives every day to care for people affected by conflict, violence and humanitarian crises, volunteers brave many dangers to help others, driven by the desire to make a difference in the face of human suffering. This year, IVD promotes the contributions of such volunteers at the local, national and international level.

Source: Text & Image: UN

 

 

International Day of Peace – 27 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 theme for 2017 is “Together for Peace: Respect, Safety and Dignity for All.”

The theme honours the spirit of TOGETHER, a global initiative that promotes respect, safety and dignity for everyone forced to flee their homes in search of a better life. TOGETHER unites the organizations of the United Nations System, the 193 Member States of the United Nations, the private sector, civil society, academic institutions and individual citizens in a global partnership in support of diversity, non-discrimination and acceptance of refugees and migrants. It was initiated during the United Nations Summit for Refugees and Migrants on 19 September 2016.

“In times of insecurity, communities that look different become convenient scapegoats,” said United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres. “We must resist cynical efforts to divide communities and portray neighbours as ‘the other’. Discrimination diminishes us all. It prevents people — and societies — from achieving their full potential.” He added, “Together, let us stand up against bigotry and for human rights. Together, let us build bridges. Together, let us transform fear into hope.”

This year, the International Day of Peace will focus on engaging and mobilizing people throughout the world to show support for refugees and migrants. Its messages will be shared with communities hosting refugees and migrants as well as people concerned that refugees and migrants may bring physical and economic insecurity to their lives.

The Day will highlight solidarity with refugees and migrants and showcase the shared benefits of migration to economies and nations, while also acknowledging legitimate concerns of host communities. Ultimately, it will be about bringing people together and reminding them of their common humanity.

Source: Text & Image: UN

International Day of Indigenous Peoples – 9 August

There are an estimated 370 million indigenous people in the world, living across 90 countries. They make up less than 5 per cent of the world’s population, but account for 15 per cent of the poorest. They speak an overwhelming majority of the world’s estimated 7,000 languages and represent 5,000 different cultures.

Indigenous peoples are inheritors and practitioners of unique cultures and ways of relating to people and the environment. They have retained social, cultural, economic and political characteristics that are distinct from those of the dominant societies in which they live. Despite their cultural differences, indigenous peoples from around the world share common problems related to the protection of their rights as distinct peoples.

Indigenous peoples have sought recognition of their identities, way of life and their right to traditional lands, territories and natural resources for years, yet throughout history their rights have always been violated. Indigenous peoples today, are arguably among the most disadvantaged and vulnerable groups of people in the world. The international community now recognizes that special measures are required to protect their rights and maintain their distinct cultures and way of life.

2017 Theme: 10th Anniversary of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Ten years ago, on 13 September 2007, the General Assembly adopted the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, a major milestone with respect to the cooperation and solidarity between indigenous peoples and Member States.

The Declaration is the most comprehensive international instrument on the rights of indigenous peoples. It embodies global consensus on the rights of indigenous peoples and establishes a universal framework of minimum standards for their survival, dignity and well-being. It elaborates on existing human rights standards and fundamental freedoms, as they apply to the specific situation of indigenous peoples.

Over the last decade, the implementation of the Declaration has achieved some major successes in at the national, regional and international levels. Despite the achievements, there continues to be a gap between the formal recognition of indigenous peoples and the implementation of policies on the ground.

Source: Text: UN  Image: www.ufcs.ca

 

International Day in Support of Victims of Torture – 26 June

Torture seeks to annihilate the victim’s personality and denies the inherent dignity of the human being. Despite the absolute prohibition of torture under international law, torture persist in all regions of the world. Concerns about protecting national security and borders are increasingly used to allow torture and other forms of cruel, degrading and inhuman treatment. Its pervasive consequences often go beyond the isolated act on an individual; and can be transmitted through generations and lead to cycles of violence.

The United Nations has condemned torture from the outset as one of the vilest acts perpetrated by human beings on their fellow human beings.

Torture is a crime under international law. According to all relevant instruments, it is absolutely prohibited and cannot be justified under any circumstances. This prohibition forms part of customary international law, which means that it is binding on every member of the international community, regardless of whether a State has ratified international treaties in which torture is expressly prohibited. The systematic or widespread practice of torture constitutes a crime against humanity.

On 12 December 1997, by resolution 52/149, the UN General Assembly proclaimed 26 June the United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, with a view to the total eradication of torture and the effective functioning of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

26 June is an opportunity to call on all stakeholders including UN Member States, civil society and individuals everywhere to unite in support of the hundreds of thousands of people around the world who have been victims of torture and those who are still tortured today.

Recovering from torture requires prompt and specialized programmes. The work of rehabilitation centres and organisations around the world has demonstrated that victims can make the transition from horror to healing.

Source: Text: UN  Image: spots.thinkglobalschool.com

 

International Albinism Awareness Day – 13 June

On the 13th of June 2017 is International Albinism Awareness Day. It had been proclaimed by the United Nations (UN) to spread information about albinism and to avoid mobbing and discrimination of albinos. The International Albinism Awareness Day aims to increase the global attention to human rights. Albinism is a pigmentary abnormality which leads to an extremely light hair skin and eye color.

Especially among dark skinned civilizations the risk of discrimination and social exclusion is very high whilst among light-skinned people the risk is rather low. In some cultures the so called “albino” are considered as hoodoos. International Albinism Awareness Day aims to clear people’s minds of such prejudices and inform the public about this hereditary disease. The UN-day has been initiated in 2014 but is firstly being realized in 2015.

Source: Text: www.cute-calendar.com

The Right to Dignity
International Albinism Awareness Day was adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 18, 2014. The resolution “encourages UN Member States to continue their efforts to protect and preserve the rights of persons with albinism to life, dignity and security, as well as their right not to be subject to torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, and to continue their efforts to ensure equal access for persons with albinism to employment, education, justice and the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health.”

Source: Text: Timeanddate.com  Image: International Albinism Day