Friday, September 27, 2019

Saint September 28 : St. Wenceslaus a Duke and Martyr

(Also Vaclav, Vaceslav.) Duke, martyr, and patron of Bohemia, born probably 903; died at Alt-Bunzlau, 28 September, 935. His parents were Duke Wratislaw, a Christian, and Dragomir, a heathen. He received a good Christian education from his grandmother (St. Ludmilla) and at Budweis. After the death of Wratislaw, Dragomir, acting as regent, opposed Christianity, and Wenceslaus, being urged by the people, took the reins of government. He placed his duchy under the protection of Germany, introduced German priests, and favoured the Latin rite instead of the old Slavic, which had gone into disuse in many places for want of priests. Wenceslaus had taken the vow of virginity and was known for his virtues. The Emperor Otto I conferred on him the regal dignity and title. For religious and national motives, and at the instigation of Dragomir, Wenceslaus was murdered by his brother Boleslaw. The body, hacked to pieces, was buried at the place of murder, but three years later Boleslaw, having repented of his deed, ordered its translation to the Church of St. Vitus in Prague. The gathering of his relics is noted in the calendars on 27 June, their translation on 4 March; his feast is celebrated on 28 September. Text from The Catholic Encyclopedia

Pope Francis explains "Sport is a very special channel for the promotion of peace and unity." to Hockey Federation - Full Text

Clementine Hall
Friday, 27 September 2019

Dear Friends,
I am happy to greet and welcome the participants of the International Ice Hockey Federation Semi-Annual Congress. I would like to thank the President of the Federation, Mr. René Fasel, for his kind words of greeting.
Sport is a very special channel for the promotion of peace and unity. Sporting activities are meeting places where people of many different backgrounds come together. Hockey is a good example of how sport can express a sense of community. It is a team game in which each team member has an important role to play. Whenever you take part in the World Championships, you can see how people from many different countries enjoy coming together to experience the beauty of sport.
It is also important to keep in mind that sport has a role to play in our growth and integral development. That is why the Church values sport in itself, as an arena of human activity where the virtues of temperance, humility, courage and patience can be fostered, and encounters with beauty, goodness, truth and joy can be witnessed (cf. Giving the best of yourself, 1 June 2018, 1.3).
As you are the leaders of international ice hockey, it is consoling to know that your goal is not only to control the guidelines and rules of the sport, but also to make it inclusive and available to individuals on a global level. Ice hockey requires unique skills and strength. Players have to master the techniques involved in skating and maintaining their balance on ice, and they also have to keep up with the movement of the puck and be able to get up after a fall. Sports like these require hours of training. As you support the development of this sport worldwide, you are encouraging young and old, men and women, to bring out the best of themselves and to promote friendly relationships on and off the ice rink.
Additionally, I would also like to acknowledge the fact that your organization received approval for its updated statutes and bylaws in May this year, and that a new Ethics Board has been included. Today’s culture may sometimes steer sporting activities down the wrong path, but we must keep in mind that rules are there to serve a specific purpose and to avoid a descent into chaos. Athletes honor fair play when they not only obey the formal rules but also observe justice with respect to their opponents so that all competitors can freely engage in the game (cf. ibid., 3.2).
With all of this in mind, I encourage you and your Federation to go forth and continue your special mission to make this sport inclusive and to ensure a safe community for all who take part.
May the Lord bless you and always give you the joy of sport being played together. Thank you.
Full Text + Image Source:

Pope Francis speaks on New Technologies but cautions "Respect for principles and tradition must always be experienced in a form of creative fidelity..." Full Text

Clementine Hall
Friday, 27 September 2019

Your Eminences,
Dear Brothers and Sisters
I welcome all of you who are participating in the meeting on the theme of “The Common Good in the Digital Age”, sponsored by the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development and the Pontifical Council for Culture. I thank Cardinal Turkson and Cardinal Ravasi for this initiative. The remarkable developments in the field of technology, in particular those dealing with artificial intelligence, raise increasingly significant implications in all areas of human activity. For this reason, open and concrete discussions on this theme are needed now more than ever.
In my Encyclical Letter on care for our common home, I pointed to a fundamental parallelism. The indisputable benefit that humanity will be able to draw from technological progress (cf. Laudato Si’, 102) depends on the degree to which the new possibilities at our disposal are employed in an ethical manner (cf. ibid., 105). This correlation requires an adequate development of responsibility and of values alongside the vast technological progress underway.
Otherwise, a dominant paradigm – the “technocratic paradigm” (cf. ibid., 111) – that promises uncontrolled and unlimited progress will be imposed and perhaps will even eliminate other factors of development, with great danger for the whole of humanity. By your work, you have sought to prevent this and to make concrete the culture of encounter and interdisciplinary dialogue.
Many of you are important experts in various fields of applied science: technology, economics, robotics, sociology, communications and cyber-security, as well as philosophy, ethics and moral theology. In these areas, you give voice not only to a wide range of competencies but also to different sensibilities and diverse approaches in the face of the problems that arise in the fields of your expertise, from phenomena such as artificial intelligence. I am grateful that you wished to meet each other in an inclusive and fruitful dialogue that helps everyone to learn from one another and does not allow anyone to close themselves off in prearranged methodologies.
The principal objective you have set yourselves is considerably ambitious: to arrive at criteria and fundamental ethical parameters capable of providing guidance in ethical problems that occur with the widespread use of technology. I realize how difficult it must be for you, who represent at the same time the globalization and specialization of knowledge, to define certain essential principles in a language that is acceptable and can be shared among all. Yet do not lose heart in seeking to attain such a goal, focusing also on the ethical value of ongoing transformations connected to the principles established by the Sustainable Development Goals defined by the United Nations. Indeed, the key areas you are exploring will have an immediate and real impact on the lives of millions of people.
The conviction we share is that humanity faces unprecedented and completely new challenges. New problems require new solutions. Respect for principles and tradition must always be experienced in a form of creative fidelity, not rigid imitation or obsolete reductionism. I consider it commendable, therefore, that you have not been afraid to state both theoretical and practical moral principles, at times even with real precision, so that the ethical challenges examined may be addressed precisely in the context of the common good. The common good is a good to which all people aspire, and there is no ethical system worthy of the name that does not see such a good as one of its essential points of reference.
The problems you have been called upon to analyze concern all humanity and require solutions that can be extended to all of humanity.
A good example would be robots in the workplace. On the one hand, they could put an end to certain arduous, risky and repetitive types of work – that emerged, for instance, at the start of the industrial revolution in the nineteenth century – which often cause suffering, boredom and exhaustion. On the other hand, robots could become a purely hyper-efficient tool, used only to increase profits and returns, and could deprive thousands of people of work, putting their dignity at risk.
Another example would be the advantages and risks associated with the use of artificial intelligence seen in debates on major social issues. On the one hand, it is possible to allow greater access to reliable information and thus guarantee the affirmation of correct analyses. On the other hand, it is possible, as never before, to circulate tendentious opinions and false data that could poison public debates and even manipulate the opinions of millions of people, to the point of endangering the very institutions that guarantee peaceful civil coexistence. For this reason, technological development, which we have all witnessed, requires that we reclaim and reinterpret the ethical terms that others have handed down to us.
If technological advancement became the cause of increasingly evident inequalities, it would not be true and real progress. If mankind’s so-called technological progress were to become an enemy of the common good, this would lead to an unfortunate regression to a form of barbarism dictated by the law of the strongest. Dear friends, I thank you, therefore, because by your work you are engaged in efforts to promote civilization, whose goal includes the attenuation of economic, educational, technological, social and cultural inequalities.
You have laid a strong ethical foundation for the task of defending the dignity of every human person, convinced that the common good cannot be separated from the specific good of each individual. Your work will continue until no one remains the victim of a system, however advanced and efficient, that fails to value the intrinsic dignity and contribution of each person.
A better world is possible thanks to technological progress, if this is accompanied by an ethic inspired by a vision of the common good, an ethic of freedom, responsibility and fraternity, capable of fostering the full development of people in relation to others and to the whole of creation.

Dear friends, I thank you for this meeting. I accompany you with my blessing. God bless you all. And I ask you please to pray for me. Thank you.
Full Text + Image Source:

#BreakingNews Earthquake hits Indonesia and leaves 24 Dead - 15, 000 displaced with extensive damage - Watch video

Earthquake in Ambon leaves 24 dead
by Mathias Hariyadi
The 6.5 quake occurred at 9.15 pm yesterday, forcing residents to flee to higher ground. The Central Maluku regency recorded the highest number of deaths (14). Six people died in Ambon, four in West Seram regency. At least 235 aftershocks have been recorded.

Jakarta (AsiaNews) – The tragic death toll from the 6.5 earthquake on the Richter scale that struck Ambon, the port city and capital of the province of Maluku, has reached by 24.

Set earlier at 6.8, the strong shock was recorded at 9.53 local time (7.53 Jakarta time), driving residents to higher ground to avoid any possible tsunami danger.

A few hours after the tremor, local authorities issued a statement excluding the possibility of any tidal wave.

Agus Wibowo, spokesman for Indonesia’s National Agency for Disaster and Mitigation (BNPB), this morning said that Central Maluku regency had the highest number of casualties (14). Six people died in Ambon, four in West Seram regency.

One hundred people were injured, mainly in the village of Liang, and are currently recovering in various hospitals in Ambon.

Meanwhile, 15,000 people are still on higher ground, as the earthquake caused extensive damage to residential areas.

More than 170 buildings were damaged. A small crack can be seen on the Merah Putih bridge, which crosses the Bay of Ambon.

Indonesia’s Meteorology and Climatology Agency (BMKG) has recorded so far at least 235 aftershocks. Full Text Source: AsiaNewsIT - Image Source: Google Images

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Friday, September 27, 2019 - #Eucharist

Memorial of Saint Vincent de Paul, Priest
Lectionary: 453

Reading 1HG 2:1-9

In the second year of King Darius,
on the twenty-first day of the seventh month,
the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai:
Tell this to the governor of Judah,
Zerubbabel, son of Shealtiel,
and to the high priest Joshua, son of Jehozadak,
and to the remnant of the people:

Who is left among you
that saw this house in its former glory?
And how do you see it now?
Does it not seem like nothing in your eyes?
But now take courage, Zerubbabel, says the LORD,
and take courage, Joshua, high priest, son of Jehozadak,
And take courage, all you people of the land,
says the LORD, and work!
For I am with you, says the LORD of hosts.
This is the pact that I made with you
when you came out of Egypt,
And my spirit continues in your midst;
do not fear!
For thus says the LORD of hosts:
One moment yet, a little while,
and I will shake the heavens and the earth,
the sea and the dry land.
I will shake all the nations,
and the treasures of all the nations will come in,
And I will fill this house with glory,
says the LORD of hosts.
Mine is the silver and mine the gold,
says the LORD of hosts.
Greater will be the future glory of this house
than the former, says the LORD of hosts;
And in this place I will give you peace,
says the LORD of hosts!

Responsorial PsalmPS 43:1, 2, 3, 4

R.(5) Hope in God; I will praise him, my savior and my God.
Do me justice, O God, and fight my fight
against a faithless people;
from the deceitful and impious man rescue me.
R. Hope in God; I will praise him, my savior and my God.
For you, O God, are my strength.
Why do you keep me so far away?
Why must I go about in mourning,
with the enemy oppressing me?
R. Hope in God; I will praise him, my savior and my God.
Send forth your light and your fidelity;
they shall lead me on
And bring me to your holy mountain,
to your dwelling place.
R. Hope in God; I will praise him, my savior and my God.
Then will I go in to the altar of God,
the God of my gladness and joy;
Then will I give you thanks upon the harp,
O God, my God!
R. Hope in God; I will praise him, my savior and my God.

AlleluiaMK 10:45

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The Son of Man came to serve
and to give his life as a ransom for many.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelLK 9:18-22

Once when Jesus was praying in solitude,
and the disciples were with him,
he asked them, "Who do the crowds say that I am?"
They said in reply, "John the Baptist; others, Elijah;
still others, 'One of the ancient prophets has arisen.'"
Then he said to them, "But who do you say that I am?"
Peter said in reply, "The Christ of God."
He rebuked them and directed them not to tell this to anyone.

He said, "The Son of Man must suffer greatly
and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes,
and be killed and on the third day be raised."
Image Source: Google Images