image-i-nations trésor

World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought – 17 June 2024

The theme of the 2024 World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, 17 June, is “United for Land. Our Legacy. Our Future”, highlighting the future role of land stewardship in ensuring the stability and prosperity of billions of people around the world.

Desertification, land degradation, and drought are among the most pressing environmental challenges of our time, with up to 40 per cent of all land area worldwide already considered degraded.

Desertification and drought are being made worse by increasingly erratic and extreme weather patterns due to climate change, which puts tens of millions of people each year at risk of displacement.

To cope with an uncertain future, decision makers will need to adopt resilient water management techniques and technologies as part of a more sustainable approach to land stewardship.

  • 72% of all freshwater withdrawals are used by agriculture, 16% by industries, and 12% by municipalities. (UN-Water, 2023
  • Rising water stress is affecting food security and biodiversity. There are rapid changes in surface water in one fifth of river basins. (UN-Water, 2021
  • Water-harvesting and water conservation techniques could boost rainfed kilocalorie production by up to 24% and, if combined with irrigation expansion, by more than 40%. (FAO, 2020)

 

Source: Text & Image: https://www.unwater.org/news/world-day-combat-desertification-and-drought-17-june

The Alphabet of Life – Letter B

 B for Building

In life, we build many things.
We assemble frames.
We erect houses and buildings.
We manufacture structures of all kinds.
We make plans also.
We elaborate some arguments.

Yes, in life we build many things, but…
We also need to build our lives, our future…
 
It is here that the words of Jesus reach us and challenge us:

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.
The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house;
yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 
But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand.
The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash” (Matthew 7:24-27).
 
A solid and promising future, or…
A spectacular crash…
The choice remains ours.

 

Source: Image: Scripture Images

 

 

World Radio Day – 13 February 2024

Radio: A century informing, entertaining and educating

World Radio Day’s theme in 2024 shines a broad floodlight on Radio’s remarkable past, relevant present and promise of a dynamic future.

Looking Forward to Radio’s Next Century 

The opportunity provided by the 100-year-plus milestone of Radio begs to be trumpeted at full volume. The century is an occasion to proudly celebrate the medium’s extensive virtues and ongoing potency. It comes at an opportune time, as Radio – though statistically popular and enormously trusted by the public – faces increased challenges to audience and revenue numbers from digital platforms, pervasive social media, digital and generational divides, the headwinds of censorship and, for some media, stifling consolidation-induced debt as well as economic hardships exacerbated by a soft advertising market.  

UNESCO invites the worldwide Radio industry in all its many forms – commercial, public, non-profit – to join in this global celebration of the medium at this special and pivotal juncture in its century-spanning journey.

The 2024 observance highlights:

The indelible history of Radio and its powerful impact upon news, drama, music, sports … 

The ongoing utilitarian value of Radio as a relatively free and portable public safety net during emergencies and power outages brought on by natural and human-made disasters such as storms, earthquakes, floods, heat, wildfires, accidents and warfare. 

The continuing democratic value of Radio to serve as a grassroots catalyst for connectedness within underserved groups including immigrant, religious, minority and poverty-stricken populations; and as an instantaneous bellwether of public opinion expressed through the auspices of free speech in the public space. 

UNESCO recognizes and understands the tremendous variety of business models and technological architecture in Radio around the world as well as the independent nature of its companies and organizations, large and small, plus the idiosyncrasies of its on-air personalities. Thus, broadcasters are encouraged to bring their own culture, style and sensibilities to their individual celebrations leading up to and during the February 13 event. 

World Radio Day is also an opportunity for radio stations to connect on-air with fellow broadcasters around the world. UNESCO invites radio stations to take the initiative for such broadcasts.

It is a remarkable achievement for a major mass communications medium to continue its relevancy past 100 years and still be a force for freedom of expression, joy and knowledge. As we proudly tell its story, let’s welcome Radio’s future in the next century.

Source: Text & Image: https://www.unesco.org/en/days/world-radio/radio-next-century

Easter Sunday, Year A – 2023

A situation of… emptiness…
This is what this celebration underlines.
The apostles are left with hearts empty – empty of hope, with no purpose, no future… it seems.
And there is… the empty tomb – Jesus had been buried there, but he has disappeared.

A situation of openness!…
This is what this celebration reveals.
The tomb will remain empty, but the hearts of the apostles are no longer so.
Because Jesus present with them…

“opened their minds so they could understand the meaning of the Scriptures…” (Luke 24:45).

And this understanding brought…
       a new meaning of all that has been,
       the purpose of a new life,
and the hope of all that is to come!

It was so for them,
and it can be so for us – a presence through all that happens, and… for ever!
 

 

Note: Another text is available on a different theme, in French at: https://image-i-nations.com/dimanche-de-paques-annee-a-2023/

 

 

Source: Image: www.churchofjesuschrist.org

 

World Pulses Day – 10 February

Pulses are the edible seeds of leguminous plants cultivated for both food and feed.

Beans (Phaseolus and Vigna), chickpeas and peas are the most well-known and commonly consumed types of pulses, but there are several varieties more from around the world, all with great benefits on food security, nutrition, health, climate change, and biodiversity.

Why a World Pulses Day?

Building on the success of the International Year of Pulses (IYP) in 2016 implemented by FAO and recognizing the potential of pulses to further achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) designated 10 February as World Pulses Day (WPD).

This celebration presents a unique opportunity to raise public awareness about pulses and the fundamental role they play in the transformation to MORE efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agrifood systems for better production, better nutrition, a better environment, and a better life, leaving no one behind.

With the help of governments, the private sector, Members and partner organizations, the public and youth, FAO works to facilitate the observance of this international day and support the production and consumption of pulses as part of sustainable food systems and healthy diets.

 

Source: Text & Image: https://www.fao.org/world-pulses-day

International Day for Biological Diversity – 22 May 2022

May 22 is celebrated as International Day for Biological Diversity to increase understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues. The day also marks the entry into force of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

The United Nations General Assembly took this decision in December 2000. The day is celebrated every year with different themes to create awareness about the importance of biodiversity. This year’s theme is “We’re part of the solution”.

What is the International Day for Biological Diversity?

The International Day for Biological Diversity is an annual event that celebrates the importance of biodiversity. It is held on May 22nd each year.

The day was first established by the United Nations in 1993. The goal of the day is to raise awareness about the importance of biodiversity and the need to protect it.

Biodiversity is essential for the survival of all life on Earth. It helps to provide food, water, and other resources that we need to live. Biodiversity also helps to regulate the Earth’s climate and provides a home for millions of species of plants and animals.

The International Day for Biological Diversity is a chance to learn about the importance of biodiversity and what we can do to protect it.

The Different Types of Biological Diversity

There are many different types of biological diversity. Some of the most important types are:

1. Genetic diversity. This is the diversity of genes within a species. It is important because it helps a species to adapt to changing conditions.

2. Species diversity. This is the diversity of different species in an ecosystem. It is important because it helps to maintain the balance of an ecosystem.

3. Ecosystem diversity. This is the diversity of different ecosystems on Earth. It is important because it helps to maintain the planet’s overall biodiversity.

4. Landscape diversity. This is the diversity of different landscapes on Earth. It is important because it helps to provide habitats for different species of plants and animals.

5. Human cultural diversity. This is the diversity of cultures within humanity. It is important because it helps us to understand and appreciate the variety of ways that people live around the world.

International Day for Biological Diversity 2022: Theme

Building a shared future for all life

The Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is pleased to announce the Biodiversity Day 2022 slogan: “Building a shared future for all life”.

The slogan was chosen to continue building momentum and support for the post-2020 global biodiversity framework to be adopted at the upcoming UN Biodiversity Conference (COP15).

 

Source: Text & Image: https://newsd.in/international-day-for-biological-diversity-2022

International Day of Sport for Development and Peace – 6 April 2022

“Sport has the power to align our passion, energy and enthusiasm around a collective cause. And that is precisely when hope can be nurtured and trust can be regained. It is in our collective interest to harness the tremendous power of sport to help build a better and more sustainable future for all. »
– UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina J. Mohammed

Securing a Sustainable and Peaceful Future for All: The Contribution of Sport

The International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP), which takes place annually on 6 April, presents an opportunity to recognize the positive role sport and physical activity play in communities and in people’s lives across the globe.

Sport has the power to change the world; it is a fundamental right and a powerful tool to strengthen social ties and promote sustainable development and peace, as well as solidarity and respect for all.

In recognition of sport’s broad influence, the global theme of IDSDP 2022 is, “Securing a Sustainable and Peaceful Future for All: The Contribution of Sport,” which creates an opportunity for the Day’s celebrations to promote the use of sport as a tool to advance human rights and sustainable development. Under this theme, UN Headquarters in New York will recognize the role of sport in addressing the climate crisis and will highlight actions to lower greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate against climate change.

Sport is in a unique position to display leadership, to take responsibility for its carbon footprint, engage in a climate neutral journey, incentivize action beyond the sporting sector, and play a major role in amplifying awareness among its billions of spectators, facilitators and participants at all levels. With the need for urgent action growing more dire every day, the relationship between sport and climate must be better understood and ways of developing policies and taking concrete action to help reverse the impact of climate change through sport must be communicated to as wide an audience as possible.

Today, our world faces generational challenges, from poverty and hunger, to climate change to the COVID-19 pandemic. More than ever, we need to overcome our differences and unite as one team working together to tackle these obstacles and create a safer, more peaceful, and more sustainable future for all.

 

Source: Text: www.un.org/en/observances/sport-day   Image: Unesco

 

 

1st Sunday of Advent, Year C – 2021

There is no doubt about it: this 1st Sunday of Advent invites us to look to the future.
A promise is essentially doing this and it is a promise that we are given in the 1st reading (Jr.33:14-16).
The text of the prophet Jeremiah gives us God’s words in a clear language:

“The days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will fulfil the gracious promise I made…
In those days, I will make a righteous Branch sprout from David’s line;
he will do what is just and right in the land.”
 
We often speak of God’s grace, yes, our God is a gracious God.
He delights in showering on us his blessings of all kinds.
The promise he makes is that the Gracious One – the Righteous One – will do what is good for us.

Another translation of the text uses the words “honesty and integrity”
And the one who is coming to us in God’s name – God himself – is called:
“The Lord-our-integrity.”
 
We all want to receive good things from God, but how can we be sure that his blessings will be ours?
I would venture to say that the best way is to… ad-just ourselves to God’s ways –
that is to become just ourselves –

just in our ways of thinking
just in our ways of judging situations
just in our choices and decisions
just in the plans we make and the options we choose
just in our relations with people…

In other words: behaving with honesty and integrity.

This could be the first step in this Advent period as we set on the path to welcome anew God’s coming to us.

 

Note: Another text is available on a different theme, in French at: https://image-i-nations.com/1er-dimanche-de-lavent-annee-c-2021/

And in a short video, also in French, Ghislaine Deslières offers us another reflection on this 1st Sunday of Advent at: https://youtu.be/lpkMLsxne3s

 

Source: Image: slideplayer.com

21st Sunday of Year B – 2021

Reading the gospel is not an exercise that always provides… comfort.
It certainly does at times, but at other times it can be rather upsetting.

It happens that Jesus questions us, and even confronts us, in a way that can be disturbing.
 This is what we see in today’s gospel text (Jn.6:60-69).
Jesus has been speaking of giving people his body as food.
People grumble about this and they say:

“This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?”

To this, Jesus replies:
“Does this offend you?
 
Another translation uses a stronger expression saying:
Does this scandalize you?”
 
Does it happen that God’s words offend us?
Does it happen that God’s ways, scandalize us?

Perhaps this means that… God is God and that…
we need to recognize him as such.
Long ago, he told us through his prophet Isaiah (Is.55:8):

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.
 

Something we are in constant need to remember and…
something we need to adjust ourselves to… from day to day.

But through the words of another of his messengers, Jeremiah, (Jer.29:11)
God assures us:

“I know the plans I have for you,”
declares the Lord,
“plans to prosper you and not to harm you,
plans to give you hope and a future.

A hopeful future, this is what is offered to us!
And this plan gives a new perspective to God’s ways which may… offend us!

 

Note: Another reflection is available on a different theme in French at: https://image-i-nations.com/21e-dimanche-de-lannee-b-2021/

 

Source: Images: pixabay.com

5th Sunday of Lent, Year A – 2020

 

W A I T I N G !

I know very few people who like to… WAIT.
In general people do not like delays, postponements, adjournments.
Of course, this can mean a pause, a rest, but this is not what we want.
We are a generation where not only business but busy-ness is the order of the day!

But, if we think about it, a promise involves precisely this: waiting…
Being promised something means that we have to wait for it.
The realization of the promise will come later, it is to come true… in the future.
We will get what has been promised after a certain time, a period possibly unknown, unspecified.

And, this is true of… God’s promises!
We just do not see yet that they can come true… that they WILL come true…
We have to believe that they will.

Writing these words, I come back to the gospel of this Sunday (Jn.11:1-45).
 
“The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 
and whoever lives by believing in me will never die.”
“If you believe, you will see the glory of God.”
 
WILL live, WILL see, WILL never die – it is all to take place in the future,
it has definitely the form of a promise.

But the the wonderful thing is that the promises of God are… reality-in-the-making!
They are blessings-being-REALised!
 
As he was about to raise Lazarus, Jesus told his Father:
“I knew that you always hear me.”
 
FAITH should enable us to say the same… even while waiting…

Note: Another reflection is available in French on a somewhat different theme at: https://image-i-nations.com/5e-dimanche-du-careme-annee-a-2020/

 

Source: Images: Unsplash