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Community & Culture

The growth and decline of the Aramaic language
By Sabah Hajjar :: 21077 Views :: Community & Culture, Chaldean Justice League

The Associated Press writes that the Syrian government sent reinforcements Friday to the ancient, predominantly Christian village of Maaloula, where rebels have battled regime troops this week. Maaloula, a scenic village of about 3,300 perched high in the mountains, is one of the few places in the world where residents still speak a version of Aramaic, the language of biblical times believed to have been used by Jesus.

A look at the growth and decline of the Aramaic language through the centuries:

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Chaldean Architectural Influences Throughout Iraq
By Bedre Konja :: 18986 Views :: Community & Culture

For years, Western media has only depicted one kind of reality of Baghdad.  The images broadcast an unending sample of rubble and wreckage as the city's true and only condition.  It is easy to believe the images given the decades of war.   The world has been made to believe Baghdad is in a constant saturate of fractured, blown-apart, gouged-out landscape and buildings.

To see beyond the biased eyes of media one will find instead a historic city that perseveres and has clung to its wonderfully amalgamated heritage with tenacity.

Chaldean architects have played a major role in influencing the world with their enduring display of artistic architectural resourcefulness. Since the cradle of civilization began to form, the kingdoms of Chaldea, which ruled the Tigro-Euphrates valley, began to build.  The scarcity of timber and the lack of good building-stone except in the limestone tablelands and more distant mountains of upper Mesopotamia, the abundance of lay, and the flatness of the country, imposed upon the builders restrictions of conception, form, and material.  

Nonetheless, what emerged from such limited and harsh conditions was nothing short of remarkable.  The Chaldeans had attained a high civilization before 4000 B.C., and had for centuries maintained fixed institutions and practiced the arts and sciences.
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Chaldean Flame-Seared Asian Spicy Kebabs
By Ann Bahri :: 29125 Views :: Living & Lifestyle, Community & Culture
Since many Chaldeans have been forced to flee their land, it is not uncommon to find Chaldeans experimenting on new foods that are reminiscent of home with an accepting flavor of their new lands.  The new foods are often a mixture that includes traditional Chaldean meals or cooking styles adapted to their host countries.  

The term shish kebab comes from the word kebab, which originally meant fried not grilled meat. The Arabic word was derived from Aramaic kabbābā, which has its origins in Akkadian kabābu meaning "to burn, char".

Kebabs were a natural solution for Chaldean nomadic tribes. Unusual meats were marinated not only to tenderize, but also to get rid of some of the gamey flavor.  Skewers were easy to find in the wilderness as useful utensils for both revolving the meat and easy eating.  

In America, younger Chaldeans have learned to turn Mom’s traditional cooking into an assortment of new dishes.  Try this flame-seared Asian spicy kebab that has a sweet and spicy kick.
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On the Job: He's Living the American Dream
By Guest Reporter :: 26049 Views :: Community & Culture, Business & Finance
   Doug Williams of the santee.patch.com 

 

For Lee Wazzi, co-owner of Santee's Lake's Market Liquor & Deli, the journey from Iraq to the United States opened doors of peace and opportunity for which he will always be grateful.

  As he sits at a small desk in a back room at Lake’s Market Liquor & Deli, Lee Wazzi talks about his long life’s journey and counts himself a lucky man.

At age 42, he’s exactly where he wants to be.

A native of Iraq, Wazzi and his family and close friends dreamed of coming to America so they could live in peace, work hard and have a chance at success.

While many Americans don’t take time to count their blessings, Wazzi does every day. To him, the American dream isn’t just a theoretical concept. It’s his life.
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Chaldean Catholic Bishop Asks the West, Are We Making Good Use of Our Freedom?
By Guest Reporter :: 47108 Views :: Community & Culture, Chaldean Churches

The situation in Iran and the challenge issued by this courageous Chaldean Bishop should cause us to pause and think as we enter into these Holy Days. This Bishop is correct; a culture without God has no future. He also asks us the right question, what are we doing with our freedoms? Pope Benedict reminds us that "A missionary Church known for proclaiming her message to all peoples must necessarily work for the freedom of the faith. She desires to transmit the gift of the truth that exists for one and all."

 
Chaldean Catholic Bishop Ramzi Garmou
 Chaldean Catholic Bishop
Ramzi Garmou
 

CHESAPEAKE,VA  (Catholic Online) - I recently read a report from Aid to the Church in Need, a Catholic Charity under the guidance of the Holy Father  with a special mission to "help suffering and persecuted faithful worldwide. It was an  interview with the Chaldean Catholic Bishop of Tehran, Ramzi Garmou. He gave the charity a message for  Christians of the West, "Be aware of the value of the freedom that you enjoy."

Here is another excerpt from the report.It can be read in full here.

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"He then challenged Western Christians to "make good use of their freedom," asking, "How do you use it in your countries?" He emphasized that they must not become "the slaves of a culture that seeks to drive God out of people's hearts," but rather that they should use their freedom to "propagate respect for human life." A culture without God leads to "death" and has "no future," he said.

"Christians in Iran only represent a small minority, yet "their vitality does not depend on their numbers but on the quality of their faith and their living witness." In their "day-to-day dialogue" with the Muslims, the Christians in Iran "give authentic witness to the values of the Gospels," he continued.

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Why Chaldean Businesses Fail
By Paul Gori :: 26060 Views :: Community & Culture, Business & Finance
One of the least understood aspects of entrepreneurship is why small businesses fail, and there’s a simple reason for the confusion: Most of the evidence comes from the entrepreneurs themselves.

We interviewed a number of Chaldean small business entrepreneurs about what they believe is the cause of business failures. 

Some of the Chaldeans we interviewed had business failures themselves; others shared what challenges close friends and family members faced that caused their business to fail.  

The interviewed included a questionnaire, discussion, and follow-up questions in order to gain a better understanding of the challenges.  We sampled 138 Chaldean businesses in California, 43 in Chicago, and 206 in Michigan.  We grouped the common causes in the list below, which does not have any specific order.
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Chaldeans Rally Community to Vote for Santorum
By Huda Metti :: 28018 Views :: Community & Culture, Government & Society

Rick Santorum greets the crowd at the St. William Dad Club 23rd Annual Lenter Fish Fry at St. William Catholic Parish in Walled Lake on Friday, February 24, 2012

Michigan, USA – U.S. Presidential candidates see Michigan as a game changer as they try to persuade voters for their support.  “Mitt Romney, a former teen resident of Michigan, thought he all but had Michigan in his wallet.  Quite an elitist and entitled mentality if you ask me,” says Calvin Denha.  “Romney is in the pocket of politicians and really not for the people,” Denha adds.
 
Chaldeans are overwhelmingly turning towards Rick Santorum as their favored candidate.  Chaldean community leaders and Chaldeans politically knowledgeable favor Santorum’s consistency, ability to work with both parties, and experience in government.  Chaldean conservatives love Santorum for his values and integrity.  Chaldean independents and entrepreneurs appreciate Santorum’s understanding of small business challenges and government overreach.  The minority of Chaldean liberals even like Santorum for his fairness, statesmanship, and willingness to listen.

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Card Playing Chaldeans Question American Freedoms
By Paul Gori :: 33932 Views :: Community & Culture, Government & Society, Chaldean Justice League

California, USA – “Chaldeans fortunate enough to make it to the land of milk and honey are getting a genuine swig of sour milk and crusty honey,” says Joseph Badoun.  California, El Cajon officials have been in debate on how to deal with Chaldean senior citizens gathering to play cards.  “This whole ordeal is a joke.  These are men in their final years, many of who are church elders, and community fathers playing cards in a community center.”

Badoun may laugh-off the ordeal, but to Chaldean seniors the issue has been unsettling and stressful.  El Cajon officials have launched aggressive crackdowns targeting Chaldeans and there gathering places.   Calls to the Mayor’s office initially went unanswered as to the reason or motive behind the crackdowns. 

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9 Keys for Better Chaldean Communication
By Rita Abro :: 27473 Views :: Health & Fitness, Community & Culture

Chaldeans are known for their savvy skills in business and negotiations.  Given communication is a fundamental skill in business and negotiations; you might be tempted to logically conclude Chaldeans must be great communicators. 

Let’s just say Chaldeans communicate differently than most in the West are accustomed to in business and negotiations.  Commonly Chaldeans in communications will be more outspoken, quick, transparent, bold, candid, and gesticulate freely in the discussion. 

This can be intimidating, frustrating, and difficult for non-Chaldeans who are taught a more linear, quiet, subtle, and masked way of sharing ones thoughts and feelings.  

A few weeks ago, I was asked to join two close friends for lunch, John, a Chaldean and Russell, a non-Chaldean (Names have been changed to protect the innocent). Throughout the lunch, I couldn't help but feel there was some sort of communication breakdown.  John would cut Russell off even though he was still talking. John kept offering unwanted advice and opinions, even though Russell was not asking for help. It became quite frustrating just 15 minutes into the conversation.  After 30 minutes, Russell stopped sharing and nodded away to everything John said.

After the lunch, I reflected over the situation.

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I-75 Wreck in Hazel Park Claims Two Chaldean Lives
By Rita Abro :: 19089 Views :: Community & Culture

By ROBIN SCHWARTZ
WJBK | myFOXDetroit.com

HAZEL PARK, Mich. (WJBK) - A totaled Lincoln flipped over along I-75 just north of Eight Mile in Hazel Park.  21-year-old Feras Salem and 26-year-old Madonna Jarbo, both from Sterling Heights, were killed at the scene.

I-75 Wreck in Hazel Park Claims Two Lives: MyFoxDETROIT.com

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Chaldeans Find Refuge in East Tennessee
By Rita Abro :: 48366 Views :: Community & Culture, Chaldean Churches

A group of religious refugees are finding a home in East Tennessee. Chaldean Catholics, native to Iraq, are fleeing their home country to avoid persecution.

Many Chaldeans are tortured, even murdered over their religious beliefs. There are an estimated 150,000 Chaldeans in the United States, including over 100 in East Tennessee. On Saturday, Bishop Ibrahim Ibrahim of the St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Chaldean Diocese, which covers the Eastern US, said mass at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Knoxville to help teach local Catholics about the Chaldean's plight.

"Usually they believe that all Iraqis are Muslims, but no, we are Christians even from the beginning, before Islam was there, Christians were there," Bishop Ibrahim said.

Joining him are members of the newly formed organization "Iraqi Christians in Need".

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The Chaldean Community Saving Grace While Saying Grace
By Neda Ayar :: 56213 Views :: Religion & Spirituality, Community & Culture, Chaldean Churches

Michigan, USA –The Chaldean community has seen horrible devastation as Chaldeans are again persecuted for their Christian faith.  Nonetheless, Chaldeans remain unwavering and continue marching towards their faith amidst distressing struggles. 

“The pain we feel is hard,” says Husam Bodia.  “Our people have been ripped apart for believing in Jesus Christ.  Our women and children have been thrown to wolves; the men tortured and killed.  No matter.  We will not turn away from our faith.  Thank God our church remains.  Our Church is saving our people and our way of life. It is a cold glass of water in the desert.”

Bodia, like many other Chaldeans celebrate the Chaldean Church’s leadership in reaching out to the injured and needy.  “Our prayers have been answered.  We have more priests and deacons ordained than at any time in our history,” Bodia adds that the most recent ordination being Fr. Fawa Kako.  

Kako’s ordination marks another example of the Chaldean Churches in America dramatic and bold steps in serving the community.  Chaldean religious leaders across America have been tirelessly working to organize and prepare for the care and comfort of those in need. 

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Chaldean Hot Spots Get Too Hot
By Sam Yousif :: 34717 Views :: Community & Culture, Business & Finance

Michigan, USA - The Chaldean community in Michigan were stunned to learn two of their favorite shopping locations went up in flames yesterday afternoon.  Both Kashat International Market and New Sahara Restaurant were completely destroyed by fire. 

Firefighters from Oak Park, Ferndale, and Beverly Hills spent all day Wednesday trying to get  the five alarm fire under control.  Early reports indicate the fire started in an international market and spread to the New Sahara Restaurant next door.

Both businesses have been in the community for decades.  “Almost every Chaldean family has eaten or shopped at those places,” says Alex Jabarow of Novi.  “Sahara would often stay open until two or four in the morning as Chaldeans would close their business and visit for a late night meal.  Those places have lots of history and meant a lot to many Chaldeans.  Especially those who fell in love with their house sauce.”

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Where Did all The Small-Business Loans Go?
By Paul Gori :: 34535 Views :: Community & Culture, Business & Finance

Chaldean business owners know if you want to expand your business, you're going to need some cash.  Money still isn't falling off trees for small businesses, and the lending process can be a challenge to navigate. As a professional loan officer for a large banking company Haisha helps small businesses prepare loan request packages.  He also serves as the corresponding secretary of a private Chaldean investment group in Michigan.  The Chaldean group pulls their financial resources, investor connections, and business expertise together to help fund new Chaldean business ventures. 

Banks have tightened their lending policies, and it is more difficult for a Chaldean entrepreneur to get financing.  “The difficulty in getting a loan from a bank is causing many Chaldean small-business owners to have to get creative with finding sources of capital.”  Haisha adds, “Many Chaldeans have great businesses ideas, but do not have the money, business contacts, or expertise to make a go of it.  Chaldean entrepreneur candidates submit loan or investment requests to our members and we decide as a group, which we will fund.”

The Chaldean venture capitalists group is mostly composed of successful business entrepreneurs, professionals with funds to invest, and businesses able to provide services to new businesses.  The group tend to invest or loan money to Chaldeans who have developed a thorough plan for the success of their business.  Loans are provided with untraditional collateral requirements and terms. 

Chaldeans have received hundreds of thousands in loans by offering gold for collateral, property in Iraq, or agree to equity shares of their business says Haisha.  “Our members each buy shares into a proposed business opportunity.  Shares prices range from a few hundred dollars to hundreds of thousands, depending on the amount needed by the business selected to be funded.”

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The Softer Side of Caring for Chaldean Elders
By Latifa Seeba :: 32975 Views :: Living & Lifestyle, Community & Culture

Who are the elders in your family? The obvious answer is that they are your parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, and eldest cousins -- basically, any relative who's getting up in years. But that doesn't really answer the question, does it? In a Chaldean family, there is a big difference between being elderly and being an elder.

Chaldean Elders are the people we respect and turn to for answers and perspective, thanks to their many years of life. Most of all, they are the people who raised you and your loved ones and helped you grow into the people you are. For several decades, they carried the burden of caring for your family and leading it to better times. Now it's your turn to dote on them. Ensuring the welfare of our elders should come as naturally to us as raising our children.

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