No. of suicides in Japan reaches 22,000 in Jan-Aug

29 09 2009

TOKYO —

The number of people who committed suicide in Japan from January through August came to 22,362, an increase of 971 or 4.5% from a year earlier, a National Police Agency report showed Monday. If the current pace continues the annual figure could match the record of 34,427 marked in 2003. Of the total during the eight-month period, 16,008 were men and 6,354 women, according to the preliminary survey.

article

Reducing the number of suicides requires bringing people hope and, of course, since Im Catholic that hope is based in Jesus who, for one example,  in confession absolves us of our sins and by doing so gives us renewed hope.    Pope Benedict speaks of hope many times  and on many occasions.  His latest was several days ago during a homily in the Czech Republic.

Dear friends, regarding the character of today’s liturgical assembly, I gladly supported the decision, mentioned by your Bishop, to base the Scripture readings for Mass on the theme of hope: I supported it in consideration of the people of this beloved land as well as Europe and the whole of humanity, thirsting as it does for something on which to base a firm future. In my second Encyclical, Spe Salvi, I emphasized that the only “certain” and “reliable” hope (cf. no. 1) is founded on God.

History has demonstrated the absurdities to which man descends when he excludes God from the horizon of his choices and actions, and how hard it is to build a society inspired by the values of goodness, justice and fraternity, because the human being is free and his freedom remains fragile. Freedom has constantly to be won over for the cause of good, and the arduous search for the “right way to order human affairs” is a task that belongs to all generations (cf. ibid., 24-25). That, dear friends, is why our first reason for being here is to listen, to listen to a word that will show us the way that leads to hope; indeed, we are listening to the only word that can give us firm hope, because it is God’s word.

I strongly encourage everyone to read the rest of the homily click here





Pope Given Catholic Encyclopedia in Japanese

27 09 2009

It took thirty years to make and is around 6000 pages long.  Here are two short articles each with different info on the endeavour.

article 1

article 2





Second Worldwide Rosary for Unborn October 16-18

22 09 2009

The second annual Worldwide Rosary for Unborn Babies is scheduled to take place from Friday Oct. 16 to Sunday Oct. 18.

Participants in the event will pray at least one Rosary on any of these days for the intention of an end to the killing of the unborn.

St. Michael the Archangel Organization is also seeking volunteers to publicize the Worldwide Rosary and to translate information into other languages.

The group’s website is here

above article from here





Blue LEDs for Suicide Prevention

20 09 2009

JR to install ‘soothing’ blue LEDS on Yamanote Line platforms to prevent suicides

As a measure to prevent suicides at train platforms, East Japan Railway Co. (JR East) has announced it will install “emotionally soothing” blue light-emitting diodes (LEDs) on all platforms on its Yamanote Line by the end of October.

Although seven Yamanote Line stations, including Tokyo, Yurakucho and Osaki, already have blue LEDs on their platforms, JR East will install the lights at 58 spots at all 29 stations on the line by the end of next month at a cost of 20 million yen.

However, whether blue LEDs are actually effective in preventing suicides hasn’t been scientifically proven, but some say they are expected to “help relieve mental stress and soothe the mind.”

full article

I`m in favor working to prevent suicides but this measure costs 20 million yen and has not been scientifically proven and there`s one more problem.  What if the suicidal person is color blind and can’t see blue?  Tough luck for them I guess.  I think ads with a free phone number to call that connects the caller to a help line would be far more useful.





Swine Flu Measures Update

16 09 2009

Back in May when the Swine Flu scare started many churches in Japan, under orders from their diocese, took certain steps that they thought would help prevent the spread of the flu, or at least make people feel like some action was being taken. Steps such as no more holy water in the fonts, and to not receive the Eucharist on the tongue. Much to my dismay these measures are STILL in effect even though recent news says the flu is not expected to mutate, and is no worse the the ordinary seasonal flu. I do have my own bottle of holy water now though.





Apologies

13 09 2009

Sorry `bout the long absence it has been a pretty busy time but from this post on I will be back to my regularly scheduled blogging.