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Entries for October 2007

Chaldean Patriarch Appointed to Serve as Cardinal to Holy See
By Evon Elias :: 68685 Views :: Religion & Spirituality, Community & Culture

It is a blessed gift: to receive the strong calling of becoming a priest. The duties that follow, the hardships that may emerge, and the affection that must be kept for each of God’s children are only general areas on which the priest must focus. But there comes a time in the lives of certain priests where they are ordained to a higher standing, calling and importance. They are given the opportunity to do something more with the world, to really help make a difference.

Patriarch Emmanuel III Delly, head of the Chaldean Catholic Church, embarked upon his vocation the day he was born, on October 6, 1927. From there the days passed and as soon as December 21, 1952 came along, he was ordained a Priest. Throughout the ten years that followed, among his already many responsibilities and obligations, in the month of December 1962, he had taken on the titles of Titular and Auxiliary Bishop and confirmed on December 26, 1962 as such, but on April 19, 1963, the devoted follower of Christ really took on his role as Bishop, when ordained at the young age of 35.

The beautiful elevation of his faith and rank continued on when just a short time ago, on December 3, 2003, the day Patriarch Emmanuel III Delly instigated a new chapter in Chaldean history and officially took on the title known by the world as, “Patriarch Emmanuel III Delly: Patriarch of Babylon for Chaldeans.”
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Returning The Christian Halloween Holiday
By Rita Abro :: 48726 Views :: Religion & Spirituality


Halloween has grown into a major secular holiday in American culture. For some Chaldeans and their children the holiday still remains a bit confusing and for Americans who don’t value devotion to the saints, the Eve has become "hollow" instead of "hallow." The purpose behind it has been lost—like celebrating New Year’s Eve without a New Year’s Day. Take away the saints and our beliefs about the dignity and destiny of human beings, and the only thing left is pre-Christian superstition regarding the dead.

Among many Christians, there has been concern that things have gotten out of hand. After all, doesn’t Halloween glorify evil? Is it right to send our children out as devils and vampires, or is it better to emphasize the saints, whose nearly forgotten feast day is the reason for Halloween?

Hallow is the same word for "holy" that we find in the Lord’s Prayer, and e’en is a contraction of "evening." The word Halloween itself is a shortened form of "All Hallows Eve," the day before All Saints Day.   In this Update we’ll consider how Chaldean Catholics can "redeem" Halloween. This holiday, properly understood and celebrated with all of its fun trappings, can be a way for us to deepen our understanding of our faith. The key to this understanding is close at hand for Chaldeans in our love of the communion of saints.
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St. Joseph, MI USA

St. Joseph Chaldean Catholic Church
2442 E. Big Beaver Rd.
Troy, MI 48083
Tel: (248) 528-3676
Fax: (248) 524-1957

Congregation Organizer:
Rev. Michael J. Bazzi

Church Constructing Pastor:
Rev. Sarhad Y. Jammo

Current Pastor:
Msgr. Zouhair Toma

Parochial Vicar:
Rev. Ayad Hanna

 Current Pastor: Msgr. Zouhair Toma

Msgr. Zouhair Toma (Kejbou) was born in Telkaif, Iraq in 1947.  He was ordained a priest in Baghdad, Iraq in 1968, and accepted his first assignment to serve the community of Baquba.  The Monsignor’s leadership skills and organizational talents along with his mastery of theology were immediately evident.  He later assisted Sts. Peter and Paul in Al-Salehia, and St. George in New Baghdad.

In August, 1978 Monsignor Toma was called to serve the growing community of persecuted Chaldeans finding refuge in Australia.   Being the fist Chaldean priest to arrive in Australia he quickly established a parish for the Chaldeans in Sydney to serve their social and spiritual needs.  The parish was named after St. Thomas the Apostle and built a rectory. 

In 1989, for his incredible work he was granted the title of Monsignor, Chaldean Patriarchal Vicar for Australia and New Zealand.  Continuing his passionate work to serve the Chaldean community the Monsignor moved the Parish Center to a more accessible location and built a large church campus featuring a modern community center, residence quarters, and administrative offices in 1995. 

In 2003, Monsignor Toma added a magnificent church to replace the previous one in order to serve the fast growing community and also opened two other centers.  The first was Our Lady Guardian of Plants in Melbourne, and the second was Mar Addai the Apostle in Auckland, New Zealand.  Mar Addai in New Zealand included two very large churches along with rectories and community centers.  Overseeing the Patriarchal Vicariate for 28 years, he managed to inspire six more priests to help minister to the fast growing Chaldean community. 

In August 2006, Monsignor chose to assist the St. Thomas the Apostle Diocese in the U.S. as more Catholic churches were being built in America and address the growing need.  On October 2006, Monsignor was incardinated and appointed Pastor of St. Joseph Parish in Troy.