NASA is setting its sights on the Moon in the 2020’s. The Artemis Program (Apollo’s twin sister) will send men and women into space to set up an outpost on the lunar surface and begin testing new equipment and technologies that could pave the way to Mars in the 2030’s
In the twelfth century, the man history would come to know as Saint Francis was born Giovanni di Pietro di Bernardone in Assisi, Italy.
His father had just returned home from a journey to France, and he immediately rechristened his new-born son “Francesco” after the country where his business had recently prospered. Francis was raised to be a cloth merchant like his father. He was educated, served in the military, and as a typical youth he lacked self-discipline and rebelled against his overbearing father.
In his 20’s, Francis searched for his own identity and often retreated into the forest to pray. He felt called by God to rebuild a crumbling church in the countryside near Assisi. When he stole cloth from his father to purchase stone and tools, he was taken to court to be reprimanded. Instead of agreeing to repay his father, Francis denounced his family and vowed to help the poor by living in poverty himself and preaching about Jesus.
Francis lived a humble, frugal existence yet he was filled with joy
Francis was drawn to the natural world and was said to have an overwhelming compassion for all living things. On his travels through the Italian countryside, he sought to help others and to follow in the footsteps of Jesus.
In 1209, Pope Innocent III allowed Francis and his followers to establish the Franciscan Order within the Roman Catholic Church.
After years of selflessly living in extreme poverty, Francis’ physical and mental health began to deteriorate. He died at age 45 and his remains are interred at the Basilica of Saint Francis in Assisi.
When a new Pope is elected, he immediately appears on the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica and is introduced to the world by his papal name. The name each Pope chooses is an indication of a historical figure he most admires or the role he envisions for himself in the Church.
Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected the 266th Pope on March 13, 2013. He is the first Pope Francis in history. Known for his humility and compassion, He is the only Pope in recent years to surrender the wealth and power of the Vatican in order to dedicate himself to lifting others out of spiritual poverty.
Fine lines, thinning hair, aching joints, fatigue … no matter how careful we are, we eventually start to notice the inevitable signs of aging.
Deep down, at a molecular level, our bodies are constantly waging a war against oxidative stress. Flowing through our bloodstream are “free radicals,” atoms of oxygen that are unstable due to having an uneven number of electrons. Free radicals form naturally when our cells use oxygen to change the food we eat into the energy we need, and they have a beneficial effect on our immune system.
The danger occurs when an increased number of these molecules result from environmental factors such as stress, drinking and smoking, or exposure to radiation. Researchers have found that these excess free-radicals strive to “pair up” their electrons, and in doing so they cause a domino-effect of damage to the functioning of other cells, including damage to the DNA in a cell’s nucleus that then gets replicated into new cells. This results in disease, certain types of cancer, and the signs of aging.
Our bodies are quick to respond when we’re eating the right and the wrong types of foods
Vitamins, minerals, and other chemical compounds found in plants, specifically in brightly colored fruits and vegetables, are “anti”- oxidants with the specialized ability to transfer an electron to a free-radical without themselves becoming destructive or causing damage.
Health experts aren’t sure how many antioxidants a person should consume in a day, and they seem to disagree about whether supplements are as effective as whole foods. Since there are numerous types of natural chemicals in a standard diet that do the work of antioxidants, it might be impossible not to get enough.
We should strive for 5-10 servings of fruits and vegetables each day, with a single serving being a ½ cup of juice, a baseball-sized piece of fruit, or 1 cup of fresh vegetables
Red wine has been singled out for containing high amounts of resveratrol, an antioxidant that could prevent heart disease and slow the aging process. But what about young people? Or adults who don’t drink alcohol?
Resveratrol is found in an array of other foods such as fresh grapes, blueberries, peanuts, and dark chocolate. And these foods, unlike red wine, also contain healthy doses of vitamins K, C, and B1, as well as potassium, iron, and copper.
If you’ve ever – just for fun – read your horoscope to find out what the universe has in store for you, don’t forget that the signs of the Zodiac are real constellations in the night sky. Astrology and Astronomy are very different things, but within the boundaries set by the International Astronomical Union, are the luminous stars, star clusters, galaxies and planetary nebulae that astrologers believe are connected to the month you were born.
Each of the stars in the practically limitless universe is “born” in much the same way; gaseous elements of hydrogen and other elements become heated and pressurized until thermonuclear fusion begins. If this occurs near the remnants of a supernova explosion, a star field is formed, giving rise to a cluster of new stars.
These types of stars form so close to each other that they become gravitationally bound. Two, three, or four stars could be in orbit around each other, at such a distance that they appear to us on earth as a single point of light. About half of the stars within the known universe are multiple star systems.
In contrast, other stars are light years away from each other and spend most of their lives in a stable “main sequence” phase, often accompanied by planets, moons, and icy comets. They steadily burn hydrogen within their core until it’s depleted, and then, depending on the star’s temperature and size, they slowly evolve into a giant or super-giant.