Now that we are more than half finished with the Year of Saint Paul, a year dedicated to celebrating the 2000th anniversary of the Apostle to the Gentile’s birth by getting to know Saint Paul through intellectual, spiritual and cultural events, let us now turn our gaze onto a rather significant figure of our western intellectual history, Galileo. 2009 has been named the International Year of Astronomy to observe the fact that Galileo made some significant studies of our galaxy. The International Year of Astronomy (IYA) proposes to observe the 400th anniversary of Galileo’s first astronomical use of the telescope.
The goals of the IYA 2009 are to:
Increase scientific awareness;
Promote widespread access to new knowledge and observing experiences;
Support and improve formal and informal science education;
Provide a modern image of science and scientists;
Facilitate new networks and strengthen existing ones;
Facilitate the preservation and protection of the world’s cultural and natural heritage of dark skies in places such as urban oases, national parks and astronomical sites.
Some interesting things
The Vatican Observatory
Galileo 2009 sponsored by Euresis, an Association for the Promotion of Scientific Endeavor
100 Hours of Astonomy 2-5 April 2009
The January 6th, 2009 homily of Pope Benedict mentioning the IYA 2009
Reflections by Brother Guy Consolmagno, S.J., on the Pope’s salute to those participating in the IYA 2009
A. C. Crombie, Augustine to Galileo: The History of Science A.D. 400-1650 (an online book)