ECONOMICS AND ENTERPRISE
ONE ON ONE
In response to the raids carried out by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in June of last year, several elected officials and community leaders have come forward to help, with some even mobilizing efforts to help those at risk of deportation.
On Saturday, May 12, Iraqis casted their votes for the nation’s fourth election since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003. In the days prior to the election, on May 10 and on May 11, Iraqis living outside of the nation had the opportunity to vote. Shoki Konja of Franklin, Michigan, and Director of the Chaldean Voice Radio, was one of those people. He voted in Warren, Michigan at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Chaldean Church. “It was an incredible, exhilarating feeling to be able to vote in this election and to have some sort of say in the process. My stained finger is proof that there is hope for Iraq,” said Konja.
In May, Shamasha Khairy Mikha Foumia published his seventh book, Catalogue Manuscripts of the Church in Telkeppe (540 pages), written in Aramaic and Arabic, which describes the 240 manuscripts he found in the library of the church of Telkeppe. He started this project nearly 30 years ago, in 1989. Born in Telkeppe, Foumia lived in Baghdad in his later years. Because his parents and other relatives still lived in Telkeppe, he and his family would visit there during the holidays and in the summertime.
Ed Babbie of Farmington Hills noticed a glaring need in his community. He saw fathers not getting as involved in school events and school related activities with their children, and he decided to make a plan and do something to change that.
Sitting down at a local eatery for this interview, Raad Kathawa recalls an early September
afternoon three years ago, when a thunderstorm ripped through Oakland
His daughter, Lauren, who was inside with her mother, called him at work to tell him the house had been struck by lightning and one half of their house was on fire, and that he needed to head home.
Six years ago, Michael Zakar and his twin brother Zach came out to their Chaldean mother, a devout Christian who is also extremely devoted to the family’s Middle Eastern values and heritage. She threw holy water on them in the hopes of “de-gaying” them. It didn’t work. The twins, 25, went on to write about their experience in their first book Pray the Gay Away and on Mother’s Day of 2018, they published their second book, You Can’t Pray the Gay Away as a way to give parents the gift of acceptance.
ECONOMICS AND ENTERPRISE
University of Michigan’s Chaldean American Student Association (CASA) chapter hosted their tenth annual Live From Babylon Event on March 9 at BTB Cantina in Ann Arbor. Each year the CASA board chooses a charity as the beneficiary. This year, CASA chose to honor CODE Legal Aid for their work with the deportation crisis. Raising more than $13,000, CASA surpassed their initial goal of $10,000, making this year’s event the most successful to date.
The Chaldean Iraqi American Association of Michigan honored Bishop Ibrahim Ibrahim on November 30 at a dinner at Shenandoah Country Club. More than 600 people were in attendance as Bishop Ibrahim was honored for his moral, spiritual and financial support of Shenandoah throughout its history but most especially during the difficult economic times.