Staff meet with and speak to groups when their research time allows. They make presentations to elementary school students, amateur astronomy groups, college physics classes and even at commencements.
The staff of the Vatican Observatory spend a great deal of their time on research projects with colleagues around the world. Also during each year they travel internationally attending conferences and delivering presentations to over 5,000 people in gatherings that include their esteemed colleagues or local parish groups and school children.
VOSS: Vatican Observatory Sumer Schools
Since 1986, the Vatican Observatory has hosted biennial Summer Schools at Castel Gandolfo to give young scientists from around the world an opportunity to learn with the world's leading experts in astronomy. Alumni from the schools continue to lead in many areas of astronomical research. In fact, Fr. Jose’ Funes, Director of the Vatican Observatory, is an example of where an alumnus finds himself today.
The Catholic Astronomer blog allows members of the Sacred Space Giving program to share information and discuss astronomy with a group of professionals who believe that Faith and Science do not conflict. In the photo below Brother Guy shows astronomer and blog contributor, Dr. Brenda Frye, and her husband part of the meteorite collection at the Drake Building during the Annual Awards Dinner.
High School Astronomy Studies Program
One of our newest educational outreach programs stems directly from the remote observing capability of the VATT. This program is offering to educational institutions, even at the high school level, and the public, through amateur astronomy clubs, the ability to connect with Vatican Observatory scientists and their colleagues through the internet allowing them to “eavesdrop” on their remote observational sessions while the scientists are using the VATT. They will also be able to communicate with the researchers and follow over time their current research projects and eventually, in some cases, program their own projects, though this will probably only be possible at the graduate level once the telescope is fully automated.
Our Telescope: VATT: Vatican Advanced Technology Telescope
With the continued financial support of our benefactors the VOF will be better able to achieve our goal of maintaining a modern, competitive telescope and discussing science within a theological and philosophical context, questioning scientific theories and how they relate to us as humans, stimulating thought as to how we came to be and why we are here.