Monday, May 27, 2024

Tag: No. 7

Lessons from the 51st Eucharistic Congress

A NEWS media reporter approached me for an interview on the fifth day of the International Eucharistic Congress (IEC) after the talk of Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle on the subject “The Eucharistic and the Dialogue with Cultures.” I was stunned by her first question, “What had the Church done, referring to the bishops and clergy, to alleviate poverty and degradation of moral values?” Noticing my silence and feeling of inadequacy to answer her question, she simply asked me to write an article instead. Despite my limited perception on the subject, I find the topic appropriate to share.

Filipinos make Church vibrant

CEBU CITY—RENOWNED Catholic speakers at the 51st International Eucharistic Congress lauded Filipinos’ religious fervor for keeping the 2,000-year-old Church vibrant.

Bishop Robert Barron, auxiliary bishop of Los Angeles, applauded the Philippine Church’s influence on the global Church.

“I do not know any Church in the world that is more vibrant than the Filipino Church. [It] is the Filipino community that makes the Church alive,” Barron said in his catechesis on the third day of the 51st IEC.

The 56-year-old bishop said the Filipino faithful had taken on the role of evangelizing the rest of the Catholic world.

Plant DNA database to be launched

A GROUNDBREAKING work on the deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) barcoding of local medicinal plants by a Thomasian professor is on its final stage and is set to be launched in the second quarter of the year.

Grecebio Alejandro, director of the Office of Graduate Research and a pioneer of plant molecular phylogenetics in the country, spearheaded the formation of a database that sought to identify local medicinal plants on a molecular level through DNA barcoding.

“DNA Barcoding for Authentication of Philippine Medical Plants” is a four-year project that began in 2012. It aims to utilize DNA barcoding among plants to create an online database and a medicinal guidebook for endemic flora.

Zika: A global health emergency

ANOTHER mosquito-borne virus is causing global panic.

The Zika virus, which spread in Brazil last August, is allegedly the reason some healthy babies were born with normal faces but no forehead—a condition called microcephaly.

Zika has since spread to 24 other countries, endangering especially mothers and their unborn children. This prompted the World Health Organization (WHO) to declare the virus a global health emergency last Feb. 1.

The Zika virus belongs to the family Flaviviradae and is commonly transmitted through the bite of the Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, mosquitoes found in tropical and sub-tropical countries like Brazil and the Philippines.

Saving Philippine biodiversity

IT MAY only be a matter of time before the Philippine tarsier, now officially listed as one of the world’s most endangered species, ceases to exist.

Ten other animal species had their last hurrah last year, data from the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, the world’s main authority on species conservation, showed.

Despite the fact that plants and animals vanishing over time is part of the natural evolutionary process, humanity may also be a cause of extinction.

Can ‘oily’ be a basic taste?

A NEW study on food science offers an explanation of exactly why lechon tastes good.

After the five basic tastes sweet, salty, sour, bitter and umami (malinamnam), scientists have discovered a part of the tongue that can detect the taste of oily food.

The new taste, called “oleogustus,” from the Latin root words “oleo” and “gustus” meaning “oil” and “taste,” respectively, was proposed by Richard Mattes, director of Purdue University’s Investigative Behavior Research Center, and his team last 2015, in their study “Oleogustus: The Unique Taste of Fat.”

Papal legate to Filipinos: ‘Re-Christianize West, send more missionaries’

CEBU CITY—THE REDEFINITION and destruction of the family is also the Church’s destruction, Papal Legate Cardinal Charles Maung Bo said during the concluding Mass of the 51st International Eucharistic Congress (IEC) last Jan. 31.

In his homily, Cardinal Bo said that while terrorism and poverty are major concerns, the faithful are called to protect the institution of family which is the backbone of the Catholic Church.

“The greatest danger to humanity today is the destruction of the family. Understanding of the family is contested and redefinition of parents have gained strong appeal in rich countries,” Cardinal Bo said at the IEC Statio Orbis Mass in Cebu City’s South Road Properties reclamation area.

51st International Eucharistic Congress an ‘eye opener’ amid conflict, religious persecution

CEBU CITY—THE 51ST International Eucharistic Congress (IEC) serves as an “eye opener” to realities concerning faith, religious persecution and the relevance of traditional liturgy and worship.

In a press conference last Jan. 25, the panel of speakers, led by Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma and Archbishop Piero Marini, president of the Vatican committee on eucharistic congresses, spoke about the Eucharist as a source of strength and unity among the faithful especially during times of harsh realities like armed conflicts, natural disasters and poverty.

Palma said the congress seeks to encourage people to not only trust in God but also act like the “Eucharistic people” expected of them.

Church needs ‘cultural intelligence’—Cardinal Tagle

CEBU CITY—UNDERSTANDING cultural differences is key to encouraging the youth and other sectors to participate more actively in matters of the Eucharist.

Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle last Jan. 28 stressed the importance of having “cultural intelligence” in reaching out to the youth and various communities.

“The culture of the youth is something that I think we elders should understand. They should be consulted, they should be able to talk to us without fear about their culture,” Tagle said during the fifth press conference of the 51st International Eucharistic Congress (IEC).

Former Dominican master denies supporting gay unions

CEBU CITY—THE FORMER master of the Order of Preachers has downplayed criticisms that he is contradicting the Church’s stance on same-sex marriage.

“[M]y position on the same-sex marriage is the Church’s. Like Pope Francis, we must be open to welcome anybody. But I never said I believe in gay marriage,” Fr. Timothy Radcliffe, O.P., consultant to Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, told the media at the sidelines of the 51st International Eucharistic Congress.

Radcliffe called on the Catholic community to be of help and not a hindrance to homosexuals.

“Everybody is on their journey. As Pope Francis said, ‘who am I to judge?’ I think all we do is help the people as they journey towards God,” Radcliffe said.