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Pope Francis

Holy See adopts UN Convention against Corruption

September 23, 2016. Pope Francis has asked the Vatican to be exemplary in the fight against corruption and meet the set international standards in this regard. Therefore, the Secretary of State has announced that the Holy See will conform to the Merida Convention against Corruption. This requires countries to implement anti-corruption measures concerning its laws, institutions and practices. From now on, the Roman Curia and the Vatican City State will review its administrative procedures to align them to the standards set by the Convention. Through this compliance, the Vatican says it hopes to contribute to increased transparency and proper management of public affairs in the international community.
Pope Francis

Cardinal Parolin to preside at liturgy before peace signing between Colombia and FARC

September 20, 2016. Colombia's government has invited the Vatican Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin, to preside over a liturgy before the ceremony to unite representatives from the Colombian government and the FARC, in Cartagena de Indias. The liturgy will take place before the ceremony related to agreements of Havana between the Colombian government and the FARC. It will be next Monday, September 26, and dozens of heads of state are scheduled to attend. In the liturgy, Parolin will "ask God to enlighten each Colombian to work conscientiously and with complete freedom, so that in a responsible and informed way, they can participate in making decisions that concern the common good of the entire country, which is so dear to Pope Francis."
Pope Francis

Pope Francis pays tribute to Father Jacques Hamel

September 13, 2016. Pope Francis will celebrate Mass for Jacques Hamel, the priest murdered in France by two terrorists on July 26 in the church of Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray. It will be held on Wednesday, September 14 at 7 a.m inside the chapel of his residence in Casa Santa Marta. The bishop from Diocese of Rouen along with 80 pilgrims from the same diocese will be present.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis' calendar from September to November

SEPTEMBER Sunday 25, 26th Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10.30 a.m. in St. Peter’s Square, Holy Mass and Jubilee of Catechists. Friday 30 to Sunday 2 October: Apostolic trip to Georgia and Azerbaijan. OCTOBER Saturday 8: At 5.30 p.m. in St. Peter’s Square, Marian vigil. Sunday 9, 28th Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10.30 a.m. in St. Peter’s Square, Holy Mass and Marian Jubilee. Sunday 16: 29th Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10.15 in St. Peter’s Square, Holy Mass and canonisation of Blesseds Salomone Leclercq, José Sanchez del Rio, Manuel González García, Lodovico Pavoni, Alfonso Maria Fusco, José Gabriel del Rosario Brochero, and Elisabeth of the Holy Trinity. Monday 31 to Tuesday 1 November: Apostolic trip to Sweden to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. NOVEMBER Friday 4: At 11.30 in the Vatican Basilica, Holy Mass for the souls of cardinals and bishops who died during the year. Sunday 6, 32nd Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10 a.m. in the Vatican Basilica, Holy Mass and Jubilee of Prisoners. Sunday 13, 33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10 a.m. in the Vatican Basilica, Holy Mass and Jubilee of the Homeless. Sunday 20, Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe: At 10 a.m. in St. Peter’s Square, Holy Mass for the conclusion of the Jubilee of Mercy.
Pope Francis

Pope announces next World Day of Peace: “Non-Violence: A Style of Politics for Peace”

August 26, 2016. This is the theme Pope Francis has chosen for the next World Day of Peace, to be celebrated on January 1, 2017. Pope Francis has talked about the worrisome surge of violence that has taken over the world. On his trip to Poland in July he said the world is in a "piecemeal World War." That is why he wishes that this 50th World Day of Peace, the fourth of his pontificate, be a beacon of diplomacy and good will. The Pope wants to underline the prevalence of law in international affairs as a way to ensure a peaceful future. The World Day of Peace is a project started by Paul VI in 1968. It is celebrated the first day of every year, and it is usually an occasion where the pope makes important statements about the Social Doctrine of the Church.

Vatican Observatory program hosts an elite group of 25 students from around the world

2016-08-27

When you think of Astronomy, you think of the comets, stars and the vastness of space. The mechanics behind the science is fascinating. But what is even more interesting is the Vatican's 30 year involvement in an elite summer program that hosts a group of 25 university students from around the world with an interest in Astronomy.

COSSETTE
Student from Canada
"It's a really great program because you are not only learning about Science. You're are developing yourself as a scientist but you are also making new friends at the same time.”

MONIKA
Student from Poland
"We learn about water in the solar system and beyond also.”

Brother Guy Consolmagno is the Director of the Observatory and runs the summer program in Rome. The selection process is rigorous and the lucky university students that get chosen must prove various scholastic endeavors and skills. They must provide evidence of an educational and career interest in Astronomy and they must demonstrate a strong written and verbal command of the English language.

BR. GUY CONSOLMAGNO
Director, Vatican Observatory
"When a student is admitted, we ask them to provide whatever financial assistance to themselves they can, in terms of making an airplane ticket, helping out in the hotel rooms. There is no tuition to the school, there is no charge once they arrive here. The meals are free. And once they are admitted, if they come up against a financial hardship, we will cover the rest of it.” 

The students that are chosen also get to spend four intense weeks studying specializes topics. The Vatican Observatory Research Group (VORG) operates a Telescope at the Mount Graham International Observatory in Tucson, Arizona. The reason for the random Arizona location is not as random as it sounds. It's dark, dry climate and proximity to the equator make this location a perfect facility to house a telescope and study astronomy.

BR. GUY CONSOLMAGNO
Director, Vatican Observatory
"It's really only in Modern time that some people try to drive a wedge between science and religion. Usually for political purposes or economic purposes. It doesn't hold up. If you're a scientist, you believe that there are laws to be found that explain how things work.” If you're belief is in a supernatural God, if you refuse to believe in nature Gods, then you are open to the question: How does nature work?”

In the middle ages, Astronomy was one of the main courses that universities taught before learning about Theology and Philosophy. According to Br. Guy, if you believe in God than wanting to learn how God created the universe is another way of getting to know Him. In other words, studying creation can be seen as an act of worship. And for these students, the sky's the limit. 


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