Thursday, December 20, 2007

New Announcements of the Mar Yosip Parish Motwa for December 2007 and January 2008

Friday, December 21:
Santa visits the children at the church starting at 6:00 PM

Tuesday, December 25:
Christmas Party at StarLite with Our Singer Robert Betsayad and Live DJ Music - $20/person ($25/person at the door)

Wednesday, December 26:
Christmas Greetings at the Mar Yosip Church Hall at 6 p.m.

Sunday, January 6:
- Feast of Epiphany of Christ will be celebrated by our beloved Bishop, His Grace Mar Odisho Oraham.
- Consecration of the alter of Mar Yosip Parish will also take place, due to the renovations that have taken place inside the altar.
- Lunch will follow Quarbana Qadisha. For anyone who would like to help out in bringing food, please contact Mrs. Sorieh Benyamin at (408)927-7340.

Friday, November 02, 2007

His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV Catholics Patriarch’s letter 02/11/2007

His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV has sent a letter to all the church members regarding the recent court decision:

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Assyrian Church of the East in Australia Celebrates the Winning Court Case of the Western California

Combined parish members in Sydney, Australia celebrate the court case win for the Assyrian Church of the East in California. His Grace Bishop Mar Meelis Zaia addresses the faithful in Edessa Hall.

Here is the URL:

We are jubilant here in California and elsewhere by this victory for ACOE and Assyrian nation. Thank you to all the people that worked hard to make this possible. Jesus Christ has always protected this church, He is the rock behind our beloved Patriarch and this church.

[Video Courtesy of]

Monday, October 29, 2007

* Breaking News *

Assyrian Church of the East won the Summary Judgment and the former bishop, Ashur Soro has been ordered to return all the properties that belong to the Assyrian Church of the East back immediately.

To view the official Summary Adjudication, click on the URL below: Documents/Decision.pdf

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Golden Sacerdotal Jubilee - 31st Anniversary of Patriachal Consecration

Every year, the Holy Apostolic Catholic Assyrian Church of the East, throughout the world, celebrates the 17th of October as the anniversary of the consecration of His Holiness Catholicos-Patriarch Mar Dinkha IV to the surpreme office of the Universal Church. With hearts full of intense admiration and love for His Holiness, the faithful of Mar Yosip Parish, along with Mar Narsai Parish of Assyrian Church of the East in the bay area, joined in faith and fellowship to honor and celebrate this special day with His Holiness.

Around 700 people were gathered at DoubleTree Hotel in San Jose, on October 20th, 2007 for a special evening to beseech the Lord Jesus Christ to strengthen His Holiness Mar Dinkha in leading the Holy Church and praising the Lord for blessing the Assyrian Church of the East with a holy and righteous leader.

His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, has been tirelessly working toward the rebuilding of our church globally. His goal has been to regain the past glory which had made the Church of the East the most progressive Christian Apostolic Church for more than 13 centeries. He has been engaging in various dialogues with various world leaders in his attempt to simplify the lives of those Christians living abroad with their non-Christian neighbors, so they can live more peacefully with each other. Furthermore, his goal has been to increase the level of theological education among his clergy. It has been His Holiness's goal to appoint only thologians with doctrates as bishops.

The evening was thoroughly enjoyable and spiritually uplifting. The evening was blessed with Bible readings, choir songs, poems and speeches demonstrating their passion for the Mother Church and its Patriarch His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV. A slideshow of historical photographs was also shown, which brought back heartfelt memories to all.

Also, a tribute by Cor-bishop David Royal was provided in recognition of Rev. Deacon Nwiya Nwiya, for his 63 years of service as Deacon. A Plaque was further presented by His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV to Rev. Deacon Nwiya Nwiya.

We were fortunate to have His Grace Mar Sargis Yousip, along with His Grace Mar Odisho Orahim among us.

Assyrian Post is pleased to have the privilage of congratulating His Holiness Mar Dinkha on this blessed and memorable event. We pray the Holy Spirit to coninue guiding our Patriarch many more years as the Supreme Head at the helm of the Holy Church. We also would like to take the opportunity to thank our Patriarch for all his hard work, dedication and service for the Assyrian Church of the East.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

His Holiness Mar Dinkha's Arrival in California

His Holiness, Mar Dinkha IV, our Assyrian Church of the East Patriarch has arrived in the bay area on Friday, September 21st. Here is Kassie's Qurbana Schedule in California:

09/23/07 in San Jose (St. Timothy's Lutheran Church) at 1:30 p.m.
09/30/07 in Ceres (Mar Gewargis Parish) at 9:00 a.m.
10/07/07 in Modesto (Mar Zaia Parish) at 9:00 a.m.
10/14/07 in Turlock (Mar Addai Parish) at 10:00 a.m.
10/21/07 in San Francisco (Mar Narsai Parish) at 10:00 a.m.

On 09/30/07, a dinner banquet is held in Honor of the 31st Anniversary of H.H. Mar Dinkha IV's Consecration as Patriarch and Golden Sacerdotal Jubilee. This banquet dinner is held at 6:00 p.m. at Bet Nahrain Cultural Center (Ceres, CA), hosted by Mar Gewargis Parish, Mar Addai Parish, and Mar Zaia Parish.

On 10/20/07, a dinner banquet is organized at the Double Tree Hotel in San Jose, in honor of H.H. Mar Dinka IV's 50th Priesthood and 31st Patriarchal Consecration Anniversaries. This event is hosted by Mar Yosip and Mar Narsai Parishes.

We are so pleased in having His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV visit us, to bless and inspire us.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Mar Yosip Parish - Second Annual Tea Time

- Copyright © 2007 by Assyrian Post. All rights reserved.

On Sunday, August 26th, the annual Tea time took place in Villa Ragusa Banquet Hall (Campbell, CA). More than 400 ladies of all ages attended this gathering. The purpose of this gathering was to teach and encourage women of all ages the importance of implementing biblical hospitality within their homes, communities, and the marketplace (Romans 12:9-16). It was a celebration of our Assyrian women and their importance to our nation.

Throughout the afternoon, the conversation ebbed and flowed among all women. The ladies enjoyed plenty of tea sandwiches, cakes, cookies, and pastries while drinking their tea and celebrating their strengths. Together, all the ladies who attened this gathering, were able to generate a substantial amount of money to help the needy Assyrian children in the Middle East.

Master of Ceremony was Ashourbella Lazar, who gave an impeccable speech regarding the importance of our Assyrian women and mothers. Our Guest of Honor was the Very Rev. Cor-Bishop David Royel, the Parish Priest of Mar Yosip Parish, who addressed the Assyrian Christian Woman.

Our beloved Rev. Cor-Bishop David Royel, delivered a touching and powerful message:

"The Assyrian Woman has been given a two-fold gift from Our Heavenly Father and Creator. The first is that of being the Backbone of the Assyrian Christian home and family, and the second that of being an Assyrian Mother who raises up sons and daughters for Assyria our mother.

The Blessed Mother of our Lord, the Virgin Mary, is the model woman and discipline for every Assyrian woman. She alone fulfilled at every instant of her earthly life the divine will of God the Father. By this, she was made worthy to become the Mother of our Savior, the Son of God Jesus Christ. Through our obedience to God's Word and submission to His Will, she became 'Full of Grace' and 'Blessed among women'. Through her docility to the Lord's calling, she became the perfect disciple and the woman who reversed the curse given to Eve-giving birth to Life, rather than to death.

The Second gift given to the Assyrian woman is that of imparting the Assyrian identity to her children and to future generations. Instilling the awareness and love for the Assyrian language and the history of these glorious people, the Assyrian woman secures the existence of Assyrian for all posterity. The mighty 'Rod' of God and the Lord's 'Handiwork' which is Assyria will continue to live due to the self-sacrifice and diligence of the Assyrian woman and mother."

We would like to give special thanks and admiration to all beloved Mar Yosip Church Ladies, for all their hard work and effort in organizing this successful event. We pray that God blesses you and your families for your strong faith and support for our mother church, Assyrian Church of the East.

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Sunday, August 05, 2007

His Holiness Mar Dinkha's Visit to the Bay Area

We have been informed that our Patriarch, His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, will be visiting the Bay Area shortly. Actual date to be confirmed. We are delighted of this great news as the Bay Area's parishioners look to His Holiness for His blessings to fill our hearts with hope and joy as he has always done.

His Holiness Mar Dinkha Visit to Canada

His Holiness Mar Dinkha's visit to Hamilton, Ontario:

His Holiness visits Toronto, Ontario:

Copyright © 2007 by Assyrian Post. All rights reserved.

Our Patriarch, His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, visited Toronto's parish on Sunday August 5th and held a mass there. Over 2000 parishioners were present in this mass. There was also a dinner gathering held in His Honor inside the church hall, in which His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, gave his holy speech of love and hope. During the following week, His Holiness visited Hamilton, Ontario for a week and held a mass there on Sunday. Following the mass, in the evening, all gathered in a banquet hall in Hamilton to hear His Holiness's speech and have dinner with him. A large turnout and truly a blessing to hear the word of God from our Patriarch.

He further instructed us that the Holy Spirit teaches us to be willing to do good to all, even when injustice has been done to us. These are God's word: 'Therefore if your enemy hungers, feed him; if he thirsts, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head'. Don't allow yourself to be overpowered with evil. Take the offensive - overpower evil by good (Romans 12:20-21).

Also, His Holiness instructed us that as far as our responsibility goes, we should be living at peace with everyone and never taking vengeance into our own hands, but to stand back and let God punish if He will.

Later in the evening, he was also presented with an original oil painting by one of the church members who devoted the painting to His Holiness.

His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV truly exemplifies holiness. His words are encouraging, and full of words of God. We are so blessed to have him as our Patriarch of our Assyrian Church of the East.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Legal Update for Hearing Held on July 30, 2007

A hearing was held before Judge Kevin Murphy of the Santa Clara County Superior Court on the Church's request for a preliminary injunction to prevent the former Bishop Soro from using, the proceeds of a loan greater than $700,000, secured by the Church's property at 650 Minnesota Avenue.

This lot consisted of the parking lot adjacent to Mar Yosip Parish in San Jose. It was originally deeded to the "Assyrian Church of the East, a California Corporation" and not to the "Diocese of Western California". The former bishop proceeded to correct the title on the deed then recorded this deed, The deed states, "Holy Apostolic Catholic Assyrian Church of the East, Diocese of Western California, who acquired title as Assyrian Church of the East, a California Corporation, a corporation organized under the laws of the State of California, hereby grants to Holy Apostolic Catholic Assyrian Church of the East-Diocese of Western
California, a California Corporation"

Judge Murphy declined to issue a preliminary injunction, stating that "the Church has an adequate legal remedy in damages". The judge had basically indicated that the Church had shown a high probability of success on its legal claims. Hence, he rejected the issuance of a preliminary injunction.

The judge's decision to deny an injunction, is a temporary decision, not binding at trial or with regard to the Church's motion for summary adjudication. Therefore, Assyrian Church of the East believes that the denial of an injunction was fallacious, and it will be presenting a petition to the Court of Appeal to review that decision. In the meantime, further investigation will be perfromed concerning such transaction by the former bishop.

The Church strongly believes that this is a compelling case and that "it will prevail on the merits of all of its claims, including its claims for damages, control of the Diocese of Western California and St. George Parish corporations, and possession of real and personal property".

[Courtesy of]

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Latest Finding in Biblical Archeology

The British Museum's great Arched Room holds its collection of 130,000 Assyrian cuneiform tablets, dating back 5,000 years. The latest finding is by Dr. Michael Jursa, a visiting professor from Vienna, who made what has been called the most important find in Biblical archaeology for 100 years, a discovery that supports the view that the historical books of the Old Testament are based on fact.

Searching for Babylonian financial accounts among the tablets, Dr. Jursa, an Assyriologist came across the name "Nabu-sharrussu-ukin", described there in a hand 2,500 years old, as "the chief eunuch" of Nebuchadnezzar II, king of Babylon.

Dr. Jursa checked the Old Testament and in chapter 39 of the Book of Jeremiah, he found, spelled differently, the same name - Nebo-Sarsekim.

Nebo-Sarsekim, according to Jeremiah, was Nebuchadnezzar II's "chief officer" and was with him at the siege of Jerusalem in 587 BC, when the Babylonians overran the city.

"This is a fantastic discovery, a world-class find," said Dr. Finkel yesterday. "If Nebo-Sarsekim existed, which other lesser figures in the Old Testament existed? A throwaway detail in the Old Testament turns out to be accurate and true. I think that it means that the whole of the narrative [of Jeremiah] takes on a new kind of power."

Cuneiform is the oldest form of writing, which was commonly used in the Middle East between 3,200 BC and the second century AD. It was created by pressing a wedge-shaped instrument, usually a cut reed, into moist clay.

The full translation of the tablet reads: (Regarding) 1.5 minas (0.75 kg) of gold, the property of Nabu-sharrussu-ukin, the chief eunuch, which he sent via Arad-Banitu the eunuch to [the temple] Esangila: Arad-Banitu has delivered [it] to Esangila. In the presence of Bel-usat, son of Alpaya, the royal bodyguard, [and of] Nadin, son of Marduk-zer-ibni. Month XI, day 18, year 10 [of] Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The World's Richest Man is Assyrian

Carlos Slim Helú, an Assyrian from Lebanon and belongs to the maronitic church. He was born in Mexico January 28th 1940. He has poked Bill Gates from the crown as the richest man in the world. Slim's lead over Gates amounted to billions of dollars.

The 67-year-old started out in real estate and was already affluent enough when he graduated from university with an engineering degree to buy stakes in a stock brokerage and a bottling firm.

Primarily invested in telephone industry, and runs Mexico's largest cellular phone company (América Movil), as well as the virtual monopoly on landlines (Telmex). But Slim's greatest asset is diversification: his investment group Grupo Carso owns an ISP (Prodigy), an online bank, department stores, a cigarette company (Cigatam), and a restaurant chain with hundreds of locations.

Father: Yusef Salim Haddad (aka. Julián Slim Haddad Aglamaz)
Mother: Linda Helu
Wife: Soumaya (passed away)
Son: Carlos Slim Domit
Son: Marco Antonio
Son: Patrick

His father, Julián Slim Haddad Aglamaz originally comes from the town Jezzine, approximately forty km southeast of Beirut, Lebanon.

Just before Seyfo, the 1915-1918 Turkish genocide of Assyrians, Greeks and Armenians, Carlos Slim Helú's father escaped over the Atlantic. His escape away from persecution and genocides ended in Mexico.

Despite the fact that he's the wealthies man in the world, Slim reportedly shuns corporate jets and flashy offices.

Widowed in 1999, Slim has boosted his philanthropic presence and overseen his three sons' careers within his business empire.

One of his famous quotes is: "I've always said that the better off you are, the more responsibility you have for helping others. Just as I think it's important to run companies well, with a close eye to the bottom line, I think you have to use your entrepreneurial experience to make corporate philanthropy effective".
- Carlos Slim Helu

[Photo courtesy of]

ASSYRIAN CHURCH OF THE EAST - 21st National Youth Conference 2007

The Annual National Youth Conference of the Assyrian Church of the East took place in Chicago from July 3-8, 2007. Youth and clergy of many of the following parishes were in attendance:

1) Mar Gewargis Cathedral, Chicago;
2) St. Andrew’s Parish, Des Plaines;
3) St. Mary’s Parish, Detroit;
4) Mar Mari Parish, Yonkers;
5) St. Thomas Parish, New Britain;
6) St. Peter’s Parish, Phoenix;
7) Mar Narsai Parish, San Francisco;
8) Mar Yosip Parish, San Jose;
9) Mar Gewargis Parish, Ceres;
10)Mar Addai Parish, Turlock; and
11)St. Mary’s Parish, Los Angeles
12)Ss. Peter & Paul Parish, Sydney – Australia.

On July 4th, His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East had breakfast with all the attendees, followed by speeches given by the Very Rev. Cor-bishop Gewargis Toma with the title ‘Enter through the Narrow Gate.’

On July 5th, Rev. Patros Patros gave the speech entitled ‘The Meaning of the Church,’ followed by Rev. Genard Lazar, with the title ‘A Reality Check.’

On July 6th, Very Rev. Cor-bishop David Royel, presented his speech entitled ‘The Eucharist in our Daily Lives.’

The three conference talks presented on July 7th, were by Rev. George Bet Rasho who spoke on ‘Your Relationship with God,’ followed by a speech given by Mr. Ninos Haroon on 'The Capture of Jesus as Recorded in John’s Gospel' and Deacon Raumin Benjamin on the ‘Spiritual Energy Drink.’

On July 8th, the Holy Qurbana service was celebrated by His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV at Mar Gewargis Cathedral. On this day, the commemoration of St. Mar Yosip Khnanisho was observed according to the liturgical calendar of the Church of the East. During the Qurbana service, with over a 1000 faithful members, four young men were ordained by His Holiness to the rank of sub-deacon.

A picnic was followed after the service. The youths said their goodbyes to each other and anticipated the next year’s Conference which will be hosted by the St. Peter’s Parish, Phoenix, Arizona.

[courtesy of]

Sunday, July 01, 2007

His Holiness Mar Dinkha Visits Vatican

His Holiness, Mar Dinkha IV visited Vatican on Thursday, June 21, 2007. One of the reasons for this meeting was to undo some of the damages the former bishop had brought upon. The Assyrian Church of the East has always maintained Christian unity with all churches and would like to continue with this unity of serving one Father, “Jesus”, under its own church independance and leadership of our Holy father Mar Dinkha.

The other reason was about the major concern about the fate of Christians living in the Middle East, particularly in Iraq. The Pope stated: "Today, tragically, Christians in this region are suffering both materially and spiritually. Particularly in Iraq, the homeland of so many of the Assyrian faithful, Christian families and communities are feeling increasing pressure from insecurity, aggression and a sense of abandonment". The goal was to find effective ways to better assist the Christians living in Iraq.

The United Nations said in a report this year that of the 1.5 million Assyrian Christians living in Iraq before 2003, about half had fled the country and many of the rest were moving to "safe areas" in the north of Iraq.

Here you will find Pope's speech when he recieved His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV at the Vatican:

Your Holiness,

I am pleased to welcome you to the Vatican, together with the Bishops and the priests who have accompanied you on this visit. My warm greetings extend to all the members of the Holy Synod, the clergy and the faithful of the Assyrian Church of the East. I pray – in the words of the Apostle Saint Paul – that "the Lord himself, who is our source of joy, may give you peace at all times and in every way" (2 Th 3:16).

On several occasions Your Holiness met with my beloved predecessor Pope John Paul II. Most significant was your visit in November 1994, when you came to Rome, accompanied by members of your Holy Synod, to sign a Common Declaration concerning Christology. This Declaration included the decision to establish a Joint Commission for Theological Dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Assyrian Church of the East. The Joint Commission has undertaken an important study of the sacramental life in our respective traditions and forged an agreement on the Anaphora of the Apostles Addai and Mari. I am most grateful for the results of this dialogue, which hold out the promise of further progress on other disputed questions. Indeed, these achievements deserve to be better known and appreciated, since they make possible various forms of pastoral cooperation between our two communities.

The Assyrian Church of the East is rooted in ancient lands whose names are associated with the history of God’s saving plan for all mankind. At the time of the early Church, the Christians of these lands made a remarkable contribution to the spread of the Gospel, particularly through their missionary activity in the more remote areas of the East. Today, tragically, Christians in this region are suffering both materially and spiritually. Particularly in Iraq, the homeland of so many of the Assyrian faithful, Christian families and communities are feeling increasing pressure from insecurity, aggression and a sense of abandonment. Many of them see no other possibility than to leave the country and to seek a new future abroad. These difficulties are a source of great concern to me, and I wish to express my solidarity with the pastors and the faithful of the Christian communities who remain there, often at the price of heroic sacrifices. In these troubled areas the faithful, both Catholic and Assyrian, are called to work together. I hope and pray that they will find ever more effective ways to support and assist one another for the good of all.

As a result of successive waves of emigration, many Christians from the Eastern Churches are now living in the West. This new situation presents a variety of challenges to their Christian identity and their life as a community. At the same time, when Christians from the East and West live side by side, they have a precious opportunity to enrich one another and to understand more fully the catholicity of the Church, which, as a pilgrim in this world, lives, prays and bears witness to Christ in a variety of cultural, social and human contexts. With complete respect for each other’s doctrinal and disciplinary traditions, Catholic and Assyrian Christians are called to reject antagonistic attitudes and polemical statements, to grow in understanding of the Christian faith which they share and to bear witness as brothers and sisters to Jesus Christ "the power of God and the wisdom of God" (1 Cor 1:24).

New hopes and possibilities sometimes awaken new fears, and this is also true with regard to ecumenical relations. Certain recent developments in the Assyrian Church of the East have created some obstacles to the promising work of the Joint Commission. It is to be hoped that the fruitful labour which the Commission has accomplished over the years can continue, while never losing sight of the ultimate goal of our common journey towards the re-establishment of full communion.

Working for Christian unity is, in fact, a duty born of our fidelity to Christ, the Shepherd of the Church, who gave his life "to gather into one the dispersed children of God" (Jn 11:51-52). However long and laborious the path towards unity may seem, we are asked by the Lord to join our hands and hearts, so that together we can bear clearer witness to him and better serve our brothers and sisters, particularly in the troubled regions of the East, where many of our faithful look to us, their Pastors, with hope and expectation.

With these sentiments, I once more thank Your Holiness for your presence here today and for your commitment to continuing along the path of dialogue and unity. May the Lord abundantly bless your ministry and sustain you and the faithful whom you serve with his gifts of wisdom, joy and peace.

Our Beloved Cor-Bishop David Royel Receives PhD

A true shining star for our Assyrian Church of the East and our Assyrian Nation:

It is an honor to announce that Rev. Cor-Bishop David Royel, received his doctorate degree on June 8, 2007 in Rome. His thesis on the "Ritual Prayers of Lent of the Assyrian Church of the East", along with his many other academic and spiritual achievements and knowledge is a blessing to us all.

We congratulate Rev. Cor-Bishop David Royel for setting a high precedent for others to follow, as His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV has always emphasized the importance of receiving a strong education.

[Photo courtesy of]

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Our People Struggling Under War

No doubt as War reaches its full maturity with both factional Islamic sides fighting it off, our impoverished people are the ones to suffer the most. Many thanks to CNN, for featuring such story, and may the world listen and yield pressure on the UN to draft a resolution for a safe haven for our people. Will the the UN do its job!?

The full article is here............

STAMONU, Turkey (CNN) -- The phone calls were chilling. The voice on the end always delivering the same message: Don't work with the foreigners.
Gorges Toma, an Iraqi electrician who worked with Western contractors, did what he was told and stopped working. But it did little to help save his brother whose charred body was found in his car. "Right after I stopped [working], they killed my brother," Toma says.

He sold his car and anything else of value and moved his family of nine to Turkey, where they remain more than two and a half years later. (Watch family eat on floor in cramped quarters )
The Toma family is among the growing refugee population to have fled Iraq since the war began in March 2003.

According to a report released this week by the U.N.'s refugee agency, there were 1.4 million Iraqi refugees at the end of 2006, most of them in Syria and Jordan. Another 1.8 million Iraqis were displaced inside their own country, according to the report by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. ( Iraq drives up refugee count )

In Turkey, there are an estimated 10,000 Iraqi refugees. The Toma family, from Mosul, Iraq, are now living in Kastamonu, a picturesque northern Turkish city nestled in foothills near an ancient castle.

They expected to only be here for a few months. But months turned into years of waiting.
"We just want to get out of here. We have no money, nothing. God is kind, we just want to get out," says the family matriarch, 77-year-old Isin Yelda.

"They killed my son," she says, weeping as she clutches a childhood photo of her son who drove water trucks for the U.S. military.

When the Tomas left Iraq on December 10, 2004, they spent three months in Istanbul, Turkey, where they say they felt welcomed by just about everyone. But the Turkish government places refugees like the Toma family, who are waiting to be resettled, in 21 locations outside of the country's major cities.

And so they ended up here, in this small Muslim city of 60,000 without a church. The Tomas are Christians.

'We are barely getting by'

Assimilating to life in Kastamonu has proven extremely difficult. So difficult, that the family's oldest daughter, Sura, 25, chose to return to Iraq to a convent.

"I miss my sister," 11-year-old Raghad says, breaking down in tears in their cramped two-room home.

Her mother, also sobbing, tries to comfort her.

Gorges Toma explains that it was just too hard for his oldest daughter to stay -- not able to speak the language, not feeling accepted, and being confined.

"She prefers the hell that is Iraq than Turkey. That was the psychological impact of this place on her," he says.

Leaving the town without permission is illegal. Every day, with no exception, all members of the Toma family over the age of 18 must report to local authorities. So each day, they head to the police station to sign next to their names.

Under Turkish law, they also cannot legally work.

"We are barely getting by," says Toma.

The family is able to make ends meet with the help of relatives and others chipping in.
"How am I going to pay off this debt?" the father asks.

"We're able to get odd jobs once in a while, but sometimes we work, and then they don't even pay us."

They all say they never imagined that after leaving Iraq, life would continue to be just as hard, but for different reasons.

"I have to get out [of Turkey]," says 27-year-old Salwan Toma. "I have no desire to go back to Iraq, but here, it's almost like a prison. I want stability, a house, car. I want to get married, to have a life."

He spends most of his time at an Internet cafe chatting online with friends. He just found out that a friend of his was killed in Mosul in a drive-by shooting at a church.
Family accepted into U.S.

The life they call a nightmare might be coming to an end. The family has been notified that they will be resettled in the United States, and they are just waiting to complete the final steps. But they remain anxious until they get that final phone call.

"I don't really have dreams anymore," says Gorges Toma's wife, Selwa.

"America -- it will be better than here."

If they do make it to America, they will be one of the few Iraq refugees. According to the U.S.
State Department, 701 Iraqi refugees have been allowed into the United States since April 2003. The U.S. government has pledged to let in 7,000 Iraqis this year.
The UNHCR says of the ten thousand Iraqis in Turkey, 556 cases have been accepted to go to the United States.

"Whatever is in America," Toma says, "it will be a thousand times better than what we had in Iraq or Turkey because there are work opportunities. There is no discrimination, no hatred."

Raghad Toma, 11, and her family fled Iraq in 2004 after her father received death threats and her uncle was killed.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Court Case Update

A hearing was held on May 18, 20o7 for an amended motion for a Preliminary Injunction/Temporary Restraining Order against the former bishop Ashur Bawai Soro before the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois . The Assyrian Church of the East is seeking relief from the defendant for making use of the name of the Assyrian Church of the East and its derivatives, especially in regards to the solicitation of funds for the former bishop's personal legal campaign. The opposing party has 14 days to respond to the Church’s amended complaint, therefore, another hearing is scheduled to take place on June 1, 2007. Then, the Church will have another 14 days to respond before a Case Management Conference is set up.


Sunday, May 20, 2007

H.H. Mar Dinkha's Letter to the President of the United States of America

His Holiness Mar Dinkha's letter, dated May 9th, 2007 is regarding the current situation of the Christians in Iraq. In this letter His Holiness is pleading for serious protection of the Christians of Iraq.

For the Original Letter, the following link is provided:

May 9, 2007

The President of the United States of America
The Honorable Mr. George W. Bush
The White House1600 Pennsylvania AvenueWashington, DC
The Honorable Mr. George W. Bush,

In the name of God, may I begin with my sincere greetings to you and to the other members of your government.

As the Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East, I feel that it is my obligation to inform you of the currently bleak situation of the Christians of Iraq.

I acknowledge that this is a difficult phase for all Iraqi people and I pray that this struggle will ultimately result in a fair and successful democratic system. However, in this process, Iraq will suffer a significant loss if added protection is not given to the tiny Christian minority of Iraq.

Iraqi Christians are not members of any insurgency groups; they are not violent; they live in peace and brotherhood with others; they are loyal and honest. Their desire is to coexist peacefully with their Muslim brothers, be it Sunnies or Shiites.

Throughout the ages, Christians have defended the soil and integrity of the country and they have played a key role in building the civilization of Iraq.

Today, a small Christian minority is subjected to the most terrifying, intimidating and threatening circumstances; our church receives alarming daily reports of such atrocities brought upon Christians by some Islamic extremist groups. Such reports are countless, but for the purpose of this plea I provide you with general overview, presuming with confidence that you will have been briefed with details of such atrocities.

Christian families, in all regions that they reside, including Dora, Baghdad and Mosul are being forced to leave Iraq or convert to Islam or pay the Jizya (a protection tax imposed on non-Muslims), otherwise they face death or deportation from their homes.

Furthermore, pamphlets are distributed in all such regions; threaten the killing of Christians if they do not abandon their homes and towns, at times, within 24 hours. Some are abducted and murdered without reason; properties are confiscated and families are thrown into displacement.

Additionally, the Christian minority are victim to religious intimidation and atrocities. Churches are being bombed and destroyed; priests have been found decapitated. Christians are, by the issuing of a Fatwa, forbidden to wear crosses; crosses of churches are being destroyed; Christian women are being persecuted, at times in form of a rape and beheading, for not wearing the Hijab.

For Iraq and its Christian minority, this is a humanitarian crisis. Christians have little or no protection of such abuses by Islamic extremist factions; the inevitable result of which is the mass exodus of our community from Iraq. Never before in the history of Iraq has such a refugee crisis arisen against the Christian minority of Iraq. If this critical situation is not effectively addressed, then the unfortunate consequences will be the elimination of Christianity from Iraq and the destruction of a cradle of civilization, in recent years famous for its mosaic of cultural, civil and religious variety and coexistence.

I trust that you will consider the seriousness of my pleas; and I pray that you will assume a more active and responsible role in implementing mechanisms and programs which will provide added and essential protection and security for Christians, such that all Iraqis, can live together in harmony and peace; and so that Christians are not driven into force migration from their homes and country, thereby creating a phenomenal refugee problem for your government and the international community.

May God enhance your leadership with wisdom and good judgment.

Yours Faithfully,
Khanania Mar Dinkha IV
Catholicos PatriarchAssyrian Church of the East

This letter was also addressed to the following members:

H.H Pope Benedict XVI
The Roman Catholic Church

The Honorable General Secretary Ban Ki-moon
The United Nations Organization

Dr. Javier Solana
The European Union

Dr. Konrad Fraser
The Secretary General
The World Counsels of Churches

The Most Rev'd Rowan Williams
The Archbishop of Canterbury

The Honorable President Putin
The President of Russia

The Honorable Mr. Tony Blair
The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

The Honorable Mr. Dominique de VILLEPIN
The Prime Minister of the Republic of France

The Honorable Mr. Stephan Harper
The Prime Minister of Canada

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Kalou Soulaga 2007 in the Bay Area

This year's Kalou Soulaga was a massive success. It was held by Mar Yosip Parish in San Jose in the beautiful Vasona Lake County Park. Over 500 Assyrians attended this event. There were games organized for adults and children with live music, entertainment and great food. It was amazing to see our fellow Assyrians enjoying their relaxing time with their family and friends and all strongly linked together through our Holy church.

God bless our Holy Assyrian Churh of the East for always bringing us together. Many thanks to all those who helped in this successful event.

Sunday, May 13, 2007


The Feast of the Ascension of our Savior Jesus Christ is celebrated each year on the fortieth day after the Great and Holy Feast of Easter. The Feast itself commemorates when, on the fortieth day after His Resurrection, Jesus led His disciples to the Mount of Olives, and after blessing them and asking them to wait for the fulfillment of the promise of the Holy Spirit, He ascended into heaven.

The story of the Ascension of our Lord, celebrated as one of the Twelve Great Feasts of the Church, is found in the book of the Acts of the Apostles 1:3-11. It is also mentioned in the Gospels of Mark (16:19) and Luke (24:50-53). The moment of the Ascension is told in one sentence: "He was lifted up before their eyes in a cloud which took Him from their sight" (Acts 1:9).

Christ made His last appearance on earth, forty days after His Resurrection from the dead. The Acts of the Apostles states that the disciples were in Jerusalem. Jesus appeared before them and commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the "Promise of the Father". He stated, "You shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now" (Acts 1:5).

After Jesus gave these instructions, He led the disciples to the Mount of Olives. Here, He commissioned them to be His witnesses "in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth" (Acts 1:8). It is also at this time that the disciples were directed by Christ to "go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit" (Matthew 28:19). Jesus also told them that He would be with them always, "even to the end of the world" (Matthew 28:20).

As the disciples watched, Jesus lifted up His hands, blessed them, and then was taken up out of their sight (Luke 24:51; Acts 1:9). Two angels appeared to them and asked them why they were gazing into heaven. Then one of the angels said, "This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as you have seen Him going into heaven" (Acts 1:11).

Scripture readings for the Feast are the following: At Vespers: Isaiah 2:2-3, 62:10-63:9; Zechariah 14:1,4,8-11. At the Orthros (Matins) Mark 16:9-20; At the Divine Liturgy: Acts 1:1-12; Luke 24:36-53.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, the Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East has granted us with an Easter message:

I have translated his message from Assyrian to English and it can be viewed below.

In this holy day which has filled the hearts of Christians of the great globe with joy as Christ is risen from the dead, where he says : "I have come with light to the world, so all who believe in me do not stay in the darkness" Eugena 46:12 He also says : "I was Nour world. do not follow me from walking in the darkness, but have the light of life "Eugena 12:8 All creatures are renewed through Christ who is the head of the beginning of the new life. The Resurrection of Christ gave us new life, as well as joy and hope for humanity. When Christ was risen from the dead, a great salvation was achieved for all nations. Christ is the peace and safety of the peaks of human beings, which puts us in good stead to celebrate peacefully His resurrection. Lord says to his students : "I leave you peace. my peace I give you. " Eugena 27:14 Christ the King, has granted us a divine peace, namely, to be detached from every creature and sin, and to belong entirely to God. When Christ arose from the dead, He left in the tomb the linen cloths, which are the symbol of our sins and imperfections. He came forth triumphant from the sepulchre. In Him there is freedom, light, strength, beauty, life. His Divine Life is the model of ours, and He has merited for us the grace of living for God as He did. Through the Sacraments our souls are clad with Sanctifying Grace, the principle of Divine life. This life presupposes separation from all mortal and venial sin, so that the soul, being free, may act solely under the inspiration of grace and for God alone through faith and love. Then it is that Christ's life blossoms forth in our soul, as St. Paul says, "It is now no longer I that live, but Christ liveth in me" (Gal. 2:20). This, then, is the spirit of Easter, the Paschal grace: detachment from all that is human, earthly, created; the full gift of ourselves to God, through Christ. In this holiday, which is our pride of all the holidays, the Joy of Christ is given to the church, so we say to all of you sons of our holy Assyrian church and all our brothers and sisters of the Chaldean and Syriac Church and all Christians :

God Jesus Christ bless you. "I declare to you, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God" (1 Corinthians 50:15) Jesus Appears to His Disciples "on the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, 'Peace be with you!' After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord. (John 19-21). We are also happy because, Christ was risen from the dead and is sitting on the right of the Father in Heaven. "Christ says : 'What is the bread of God? God's bread is the One that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world." Then Jesus was asked "Sir, give us this bread always." . Then Jesus said, "I am the bread that gives life. The person that comes to me will never be hungry. The person that believes in me will never be thirsty." (John 6:35 )

Christians and believers sincerely hope it is necessary to put our faith in the hands of Jesus, who will help you build your spiritual house on a solid foundation. "Build Your House on the Rock. Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it." (Mattew 7:24-27)

If not for the elders, not moving away from our church, because it away from the Church of Christ, but away from Christ. يتوجب ان نحصن انفسنا بالصوم والصلاة والسلوك الصالح والتقي في وجه قوى الشيطان الذي هو عدو العدل.Must Nhsan ourselves Balsom, prayer and good behavior and met strong in the face of the devil is the enemy of justice. يقول الرسول: "أَمَا تَعْلَمُونَ أَنَّكُمْ هَيْكَلُ اللهِ، وَرُوحُ اللهِ يَسْكُنُ فِيكُمْ؟" 1 كورنثوس 16:3The prophet says : "As you know the structure of God, the spirit of God lives in you?" 1 Corinthians 16:3 استلوا بايديكم سيف الروح الذي هو كلام الله.Astloa hands Seif spirit, which is God's words. "كَيْ لاَ نَكُونَ فِي مَا بَعْدُ أَطْفَالاً مُضْطَرِبِينَ وَمَحْمُولِينَ بِكُلِّ رِيحِ تَعْلِيمٍ، بِحِيلَةِ النَّاسِ، بِمَكْرٍ إِلَى مَكِيدَةِ الضَّلاَلِ. بَلْ صَادِقِينَ فِي الْمَحَبَّةِ، نَنْمُو فِي كُلِّ شَيْءٍ إِلَى ذَاكَ الَّذِي هُوَ الرَّأْسُ: الْمَسِيحُ" افسس 14:4"In order not to be in the post-children Madturbin and laptops all Wind education, clumsy people, disingenuously framed to error. But true to love, grow in everything to the one who is the head of Christ : "Ephesians 14:4 لانماء جسد الكنيسة فان الايمان مع المحبة والاحترام والاستماع الى بعض هي امور لازمة.For the development of the body of the church, the faith with love and respect and listen to some of the things to the crisis. وكلما كنا مرتبطين بالمسيح فاننا سنعطي ثمارا صالحة وهنيئة وسنعيش مسرورين في هذا العالم.Whenever we associated Christ, we will produce valid and comfortable and happy to live in this world. يقول المسيح: "أَنَا الْكَرْمَةُ وَأَنْتُمُ الأَغْصَانُ. الَّذِي يَثْبُتُ فِيَّ وَأَنَا فِيهِ هذَا يَأْتِي بِثَمَرٍ كَثِيرٍ، لأَنَّكُمْ بِدُونِي لاَ تَقْدِرُونَ أَنْ تَفْعَلُوا شَيْئًا."Christ says : "I grapevines and you browse. That proves I am in this comes Pthmer many, because you Bdone You can not to do something. " يوخنا 5:15Eugena 5:15 ويقول ايضا: "أَنَا هُوَ الطَّرِيقُ وَالْحَقُّ وَالْحَيَاةُ. لَيْسَ أَحَدٌ يَأْتِي إِلَى الآبِ إِلاَّ بِي."He also says : "I was the right path and life. No one comes to the father except me. " يوخنا 6:14Eugena 6:14 لذا، كاخوة في المسيح كونوا صادقين مع بعض، ولا تكون محبتكم خادعة، بل كونوا كارهين للشرور وتابعين للصالحات.Thus, as brothers in Christ Be honest with some, and be Mahbtkm misleading, but formed averse to the evil, affiliated to grow up to be good. ما تعتقدونه جيدا لكم اطلبوه ايضا لاخوتكم في المسيح.What Tattakaddounh well you Atalboh also brothers in Christ. كونوا متواضعين ورحومين، ولا تعتقدون في افنسكم انكم اكثر حكمة من الاخرين، "لاَ تُجَازُوا أَحَدًا عَنْ شَرّ بِشَرّ. مُعْتَنِينَ بِأُمُورٍ حَسَنَةٍ قُدَّامَ جَمِيعِ النَّاسِ. إِنْ كَانَ مُمْكِنًا فَحَسَبَ طَاقَتِكُمْ سَالِمُوا جَمِيعَ النَّاسِ. لاَ تَنْتَقِمُوا لأَنْفُسِكُمْ أَيُّهَا الأَحِبَّاءُ، بَلْ أَعْطُوا مَكَانًا لِلْغَضَبِ. لاَ يَغْلِبَنَّكَ الشَّرُّ بَلِ اغْلِبِ الشَّرَّ بِالْخَيْرِ."Rest and Rhomin mediocre, and you believe in Avenskm you more wisdom than others, "not exceeded one from the evil of human beings. Magnin good things shin all people. That was only possible for you Salmwa all people. Not Tntekamoa for yourselves dear loved ones, but they gave us a place of anger. Iglbenk not evil, but most evil with good. " رومية 16:12-21Roumieh 16:12-21 هذه الوصايا من الكتاب المقدس هي فضائل علينا بسماعها وتطبيقها، كنسيا واجتماعيا وقوميا.These commandments of the Bible we are virtues hearing and application bishop, socially and nationally. اذا اراد احد ان يكون موقرا في المجتمع الكنسي والقومي، فان عليه ان يدرك ان عليه ايضا توقير صاحبه.If one wanted to be distinguished in the community and the national church, it should also realize that it's sacrilege. لا احد يعتقدن ذاته انه اعلى من زملاءه ويتفاخر ويكون انانيا، ولا يعتقدن احدا ان كل ما يقوله من راي او اقتراح هو صائب.No one believed that the same higher than boasting about his colleagues, and be selfish, and believe that each one of what opinion or suggestion is right. بل عليه ان يتشاور مع من يعمل معهم، ولا يرتكب اخطاء ويلحق الاذى والخسارة بالمجتمع الكنسي والقومي.But he must consult with those working with them, and commit mistakes and hurt and loss and national church community. لان اراء وقرارات شخص لمفرده تكون اكثر عرضة للاخطاء، في حين ان اعضاء مجمع معين يرتكبون اخطاء اقل.Because the views and decisions of a single person to be more susceptible to errors, while the Academy members who commit certain mistakes less. الكنيسة والامة ليستا ملك اي شخص، لذا لا يحق لشخص لمفرده ان يكون متسلطا برايه.Church and the nation are not owned by any person, therefore, not entitled to the individual person to be hegemonic wars opinion. لنتعلم من ربنا يسوع المسيح من بعد عماذه حين خرج للكرازة اختار لنفسه اثني عشر رسولا ليكونوا دوما معه، وهذا مثال صالح اثبت فيه المسيح ان الانسان هو محتاج للعون.To learn from the God of Jesus Christ after Amath while left of the haughty chose for himself twelve messenger to be always with him, and this a good example of Christ proved that man is in need of help. ان ابن الكنيسة الذي له رتبة ومسؤولية في مجال ودرب الكنيسة يجب ان يكون مؤمنا وصادقا ومطيعا، قال المسيح لتلاميذه: " إِنْ أَرَادَ أَحَدٌ أَنْ يَأْتِيَ وَرَائِي فَلْيُنْكِرْ نَفْسَهُ وَيَحْمِلْ صَلِيبَهُ وَيَتْبَعْنِي."The son of the Church, which has the rank and responsibility in the area of the path of the church and must be insured and truthful and obedient, Christ said to his students : "One wants to come back Flenker himself and bear the Cross and follow me." متي 24:16When 24:16 انكار النفس تعني التحمل، التضحية، التواضع والتسامح، لذا علينا ان نكون محبين وموقرين ومطيعين بعضنا لبعض.Self-denial means endurance, sacrifice, humility, tolerance, we have to be loving and distinguished and vulnerabilities of each other. كنيسة المشرق الاشورية الرسولية الجامعة المقدسة لها قوانين سنهاديقية التي حددت واجبات كل عضو في الكنيسة.Orient Apostolic Assyrian Church of the Holy League with laws Senhadiqih identified the duties of each member of the church. من المهم ان يكون ابناء كنيستنا مطيعين، وحريصين على الالتزام بقوانين ومقررات المجمع السنهاديقي من اجل نهوض وتقدم الكنيسة.It is important that the people of our church tensions, and anxious to comply with the laws and decisions of the compound Alsenhadiqi for progress and the advancement of the church. على كاهن كل رعية مسؤولية هذه الانشطة:The priest each congregation responsibility of these activities : 1- صفوف التعليم المسيحي للاطفال، وعلى الكاهن ان يقوم بتعليم المعلمات والمعلمين الذين يقومون بالتعليم.1-Christian education classes for children, and the priest that the education of teachers and teachers who education. 2- فرقة الانشاد الكنسية.Task 2-Choral Church. 3- لجنة الشبيبة الكنسية.3-Church Youth Commission. 4- يتم تحديد يوم واحد في الاسبوع من اجل التعليم المسيحي لجميع ابناء الرعية، فمن الضروري ان يشارك ابناء الرعية في دورات التعليم المسيحي ليعززوا بنيان ايمانهم المسيحي.4-be determined one day a week for Christian education for all sons of the parish, it is essential that the people involved in parish education courses to enhance the texture of the Christian faith Christian. يقول الرسول: " إِذًا الإِيمَانُ هو من السماع، والسماع هو من كلمة الله" رو 17:10The prophet says : "If faith is of hearing and hearing the word of God is" Rowe 17:10 لذا عليكم الاستماع الى كلمة الله وتعلمها كي لا ينهار بنيان ايمانكم بالرياح والاعاصير وكلمات غير المؤمنين.So you listen to the word of God and learning so that it does not collapse texture faith through all the winds and storms, and the words of non-believers. بناتنا وابناءنا بالروح،Daughters and sons spirit, نطلب اليكم كمسيحيين مؤمنين في كل بلد تعيشون فيه ان تكونوا مواطنين مخلصين لسلطاتكم وملتزمين بحفظ قوانين البلد الذي تعيشون فيه لتكونوا بذلك اكثر محبة وتوقيرا لدى مسولي البلد.We ask you as Christians believing in each of you that you are faithful to your citizens and committed to the conservation laws of the country in which you may live where you are so affectionate and more courtesy to the Msole country. كونوا مع جيرانكم بمحبة وسلام، احترموهم لتكونوا محترمين، لان الرب يسوع المسيح يوصينا: "احب جارك مثل نفسك" لوقا 28:10Be with your love, and peace, to you Ahtermohm respectable, because the Lord Jesus Christ appraisers : "love your neighbor as yourself" Luke 28:10 حيثما عشتم لا تنسوا انكم بنات وابناء كنيسة المشرق الاشورية الرسولية الجامعة المقدسة، كونوا بقرب كنيستكم وناشطين فيها وملتزمين بالطقوس والاسرار والتقليد الرسولي والقوانين السنهاديقية للكنيسة التي يعتمدها ويقرها المجمع السنهاديقي الحالي، لان كنيستنا هي والدتنا الروحية التي علينا بمحبتها وتوقيرها.Where do not forget that you preserve the daughters and sons of the Church of Orient University Holy Apostolic Assyrian, formed near Knestkm and activists and committed ritual and tradition and the secrets laws Alsenhadiqih See and the Church adopted and approved by the academy Alsenhadiqi this, because our church is a spiritual Aldtna that we Bmahbtha and Toukirha. كأمة، لا تكونوا متشككين بمن تكونون، لان اباءنا ومنذ الفي عام حفظوا الاسم واللغة الادبية لامتنا الاشورية مع ايمانهم المسيحي، لذا يتوجب ان يكون لكم غيرة واعتزاز بتاريخكم كأمة اشورية، ان الابنية القديمة والاثار المتبقية والالواح المنقورة في بين النهرين تشهد على تاريخ اباءنا.As a nation, do not be skeptical, including you, as our fathers and since the year two thousand were at the name and literary language of our nation with the Assyrian Christian faith, therefore, must be to you and the other Btarejkm pride as a nation zone, the old buildings and the remaining panels Almenkorh in Mesopotamia witness to the history of our forefathers. ان لنا هبتان ممنوحتان لنا من الله: ايماننا المسيحي لكنيسة المشرق الاشورية، وانتماءنا القومي الاشوري.That we Hptan Mmnoahtan us from our faith in God : Christian Assyrian Church of the Orient, and our belonging to the National Assyrian. في الختام،In conclusion, نقول ثانية لجميعكم: ليكن عيدكم مباركا، واننا نصلي الى الله الآب ليحفظكم في امن وسلام، واننا نأمل ان تحتفوا بعيد قيامة سيدنا يسوع المسيح بفرح وسلام اينما تعيشون يا ابناء كنيستنا المقدسة وامتنا الاشورية، ومع جميع اخوتنا مسيحيي العالم، ونصلي بخاصة من اجل الامن والسلام في الوطن العراق وكل المعمورة عامة.We say again to all of you : the holiday was a blessed, and we pray to God to protect the security, peace, and we hope that he Thatvua far our Lord, Jesus Christ with joy and peace of you wherever you sons of our church and our holy Assyrian, and with all our fellow Christians the world, and especially pray for peace and security at home and Iraq globe general. لتكن نعمة ورحمة ربنا يسوع المسيح مع جميعكم الى الابد الأبدين .Let the blessing of God and the mercy of Jesus Christ with all of you forever eternity.

Friday, March 30, 2007

8th Annual Assyrian Flag Raising 2007 (San Jose, CA)

Saturday March 31st, 2007
70 West Hedding Street (Downtown San Jose)

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Latest Court Case News

The attorneys of the Holy Synod of the Assyrian Church of the East appeared in the Santa Clara County Superior Court on February 6, 2007 in the Case Management Conference. A Trial Setting Conference was set for April 24, 2007, to determine a court trial date. The actual court date exceeds 90 days from the Trial Setting Conference date of April 24.

The attorneys of the Assyrian Church of the East are preparing a Motion for Summary Judgment, "where the Church (through her attorneys) will move that Judge Huber adjudicate this case before it reaches trial, based on the merits of the vast amount of documentary evidence favoring the Church’s position". There will also be an attempt to depose the former bishop soon. We have found out that subpoenas have already been sent out to persons of interest. The former bishop has been trying to delay the matters and stall the setting of a trial date. In any case, our church’s attorneys are ready to proceed.

"It is requested that the faithful sons and daughters of the Assyrian Church of the East pray for their Holy Church during these trying times when the Church of the East is being persecuted and brought to suffer with the crucified Lord".


Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Baouta’d Ninevaye or the Rogation of the Ninevites

Baouta’d Ninevaye or the Rogation of the Ninevites ܒܥܘܬܐ ܕܢܝܢܘܐ which means 'Nineveh's Wish' commemorates the repentance of the people of Nineveh at the preaching of Jonah, the Prophet.

God instruct Jonah to go to Nineveh and condemn Assyrians for their “wickedness”, and to preach faith in His unity and virtuous conduct. But the people jeered at him and paid no heed to his call. Jonah was so disgusted with the attitude of his people that he decided to leave his town and take to the sea.

When his ship was in deep waters, it was rocked by storm and Jonah was thrown overboard and swallowed by a big fish. As he lay in the belly of the fish, Jonah wondered why he was being punished when God had chosen him to be His messenger; where had he gone wrong? He then realized that he should not have acted in anger, because God wished that he be patient and more persuasive.

He prayed for forgiveness and for another opportunity to prove himself. Thus did his Lord choose him and make him of the company of the righteous. [68:50]

After three days in the belly of the fish, God listened to his prayers and miraculously took him out of the belly of the fish and cast him, albeit in a sickly condition, upon a deserted shore. Having recovered in the shadow of a gourd-tree, he went to Ninveh, where he pursued his mission, this time with greater persuasion and forbearance and despite all the jeers of the people, continuing with his work to bring them to the right path.

God told Jonah: Had your Lord so wished, all people everywhere would have been believers. But that is not His way, hence do not force anyone to take to Our path unless they do so willingly. No one can believe except by the will of God; only those who are skeptics do not understand His message. [10:99-100]

The Ninevites repent and declared a public fast. God then relented and did not inflict on them the punishment he had threatened. This shows God's universal love and mercy which extend to all human beings.

For Assyrians the Rogation of Ninevite has a nationalistic and a spiritual significance: In this way Assyrians were always reminded of Nineveh throughout the history until the ruins of Nineveh were discovered in early half of the 19th Century. Assyrians were also reminded of their importance in the history of the Church and spiritual development of Judeo-Christian tradition, for the Ninevites symbolized the longing of all humans for a universal God. The God who is so gracious and compassionate, the God who watches over His people and protects them from their evil ways.

During the three days of Baouta (fasting) people abstain from all food and water in their plea for forgiveness. Traditionally, at the end of the fasting period those that have fasted would partake of three handfuls of parched barley, mixed with a like amount of salt, and then sleep. Assyrians have different recipe's for such salty mixture or "pookhon" as it's called.

Baouta d’Ninevaye or the Rogation of Ninevites is an important Assyrian tradition which must be noted for its historic and spiritual significance.

Monday, January 29, 2007

It's Our Honor

H.M. Queen Elizabeth II, The Queen of United Kingdom and Head of the Anglican Church of the England recognises Australians who have provided direct support or service of a close personal nature through honors and awards within her own personal gift.

It is an honor to make the following announcement:

On January 26, 2007, His Grace Mar Meelis Zaia, Bishop of the Diocese of Australia and New Zealand of the Holy Apostolic Catholic Assyrian Church of the East and General-Secretary of the Holy Synod was included in the honor roll and was made a Member of the Order of Australia. Australian honors recognise and celebrate ordinary Australians who show courage, self-sacrifice, dedication, love and service to their community and humanity. Their stories help shape the country’s enduring qualities in the present and the future.

For more information, please refer to the following link:

Congradulations H.G. Mar Meelis for such major award and accomplishment. You are one of the living treasures of our Assyrian Church of the East. We are so proud of you not only for being our Assyrian Church of the East Bishop, but also as our model Assyrian citizen. God bless you.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Assyrian Flag

  • Golden Circle at the center represents the sun (Shamash), which gives life to all things on earth.
  • The four pointed star surrounding the sun symbolizes the land; and its light blue color represents happiness and tranquility.
  • The wavy stripes extending from the center to the four corners of the flag symbolize the three major rivers flowing through the land of Assyria.
  • The dark blue stand for the Assyrian word 'Prat' meaning "Peruta" (abundance).
  • The red stripes stand for courage, glory and pride.
  • The white lines in between stand for tranquility and peace.
  • Above the blue star is a representation of the image of God Ashur, the ancient Assyrian supreme deity. The emblem of Ashur features the deity standing in a circle with two eagle wings spanning and over stretching its length on two sides. Ashur has drawn a bow and his arrow is ready to fly. His image represents an Assyrian guardian who is looking after the the country, the flag, and the nation it represents.
  • On top of the flagstaff is the standard of King Sargon I, who established the first Assyrian empire, signifying the might and great civilization achieved.