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The Cowardice of Catholics
By Salam Abbo :: Friday, September 26, 2008 :: 66736 Views :: Living & Lifestyle, Opinion and Editorials

“For the Catholic there is no room for cowardice," says Frank Dado.  “Cowardice is the opposite of the moral virtue of fortitude.  Cowards are weak in difficult times and inconsistent in the pursuit of good.  They are unable to resist temptation and easily succumb to sin.  They fear death, trials, and persecutions.  It is from either pride or cowardice that sin takes hold and grows.  A Catholic coward will quickly become a Judas and sell-out his faith, his church, and his people.” 

Most Chaldeans are secure about their faith.  A legacy of courage in the throngs of tragic trials and persecution has proven Chaldeans do not break easy.  “Evil has tried to penetrate the church walls of Chaldeans since the early formation of the church.  The walls remain.  Our church leaders are assassinated, thinking the flock will scatter.  We do not,” says Dado defiantly.   “Evil has now changed its strategy.  It can not break Chaldeans, so it is trying to melt us.”

Dado refers to the slow burn Chaldeans endure in the West.  “Forced to flee Iraq, rather than convert from their faith, Chaldeans now have to contend with the steady fire of Western sin.”  Western society and culture continues to promote forbidden deeds as trendy, modern, progressive, or hip.  Dado says Chaldeans are afraid to take action against what they know is immoral and evil.  “Instead children call their parents boaters and misguidedly run into the arms of evil thinking it is cool or that they will be accepted.”

The pressure to remain silent or tolerate evil is real.  Schools and college campuses have long used humiliation and shame to force Catholics and other pious groups into silence.  This is why Dado considers them cowards.  He says the cowards have been frightened into obeying what they know to be wrong. 

They make excuses as to why they should not get involved.  Dado says they say things like it does not matter or it’s useless to object.  “Those that truly believe in their faith, defend their faith,” Dado says. 

“As Catholics we need to be firm and un-wavering in our beliefs. We believe what we believe because we know its true.  If is sad, but true that people with such strong convictions are looked upon with jealousy, envy, anger, and hatred.  Catholics are the target of discrimination and hateful attacks.  That is how you know evil is guiding the Catholic bashers and attackers.  If it were goodness guiding them, they would look upon those they belive to be misguided with compassion, empathy, and assistance.  Instead it is with mockery, anger, and hatred.  The fingerprints of evil.”  

A significant majority of American’s feels the media and entertainment industry is biased and unwilling to allow opposing views to the liberal culture that encourages deviant and bad behavior.  Research and many studies confirm the sentiments of what most Americans feel.  However, the same respondents feel that they are too busy, powerless, or cowardly to do anything to fight back.   

Dado reminds Chaldeans that the legacy of Chaldeans is to defend against evil. “In Iraq we lived meekly and protected one another.  In America we must be vigilant and unafraid to speak truth to evil.  The wise say, we do not remember the words and deeds of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.  Chaldeans and other Catholics should be frequently reminded it is of these occasions that our faith’s heroes or cowards are revealed.”

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.