Helping the homeland

Most everyone with ancestral roots outside of the United States feels some sort of a connection to his or her homeland. Some go back to visit. Others, go back to help.

The Shlama Foundation was created to do just that in the ISIS ravaged ancient city of Nineveh in northern Iraq.

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Special liaison appointed for Iraqi Christians

According to Al Monitor, fol­lowing pressure from Vice President Mike Pence, dis­placed Iraqi Christians now have their own liaison to the U.S. aid agency. Max Primorac has been appointed as the new representative “for minority assistance programs to oversee the dis­tribution of US aid for Iraqi Christians and Yazidis as they seek to rebuild their lives,” reports Al Monitor.

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New CFO to give Chaldean Eparchy a boost

As the Chaldean Ep­archy of St. Thomas the Apostle grows in size and moves steadily into the 21st century, the Bishop and church leaders face in­creasingly complex and time consuming financial responsi­bilities. To smoothly facilitate these changes, Bishop Francis Kalabat and the Diocese’s Fi­nancial Council hired Walter Nevolis as its chief financial officer.

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Bishop creates Diocesan Finance Council

With the massive growth in the Chaldean Diocese and ongo­ing financial management needs, Bishop Francis moved earlier this year to formally create a Diocesan Finance Council. They mulled over the idea of the Council over the years but it has not taken hold in the long run until now. The need is not only there but the Council is an actual requirement of the Code of Canon Law.

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Destined to be born

I write this story in first person in­stead of a feature story because I was indirectly involved. I was driving my daughter home from ice skating one early evening when I answered a call from an unknown number which is not typical of me. I usually let those calls go to voicemail. Something com­pelled me to answer and when I did a woman on the other end of the line asked if I was Vanessa Denha Garmo from the Chaldean News. Speaking to her on Bluetooth in my car, I answered that I in fact was she. She proceeded to say, “so, you are anti-abortion?”

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Marketing on the next level

Most mornings Trevor George wakes up at 4:15 a.m., heads to Starbucks, and is in the office by 5:00 a.m.

This “go-get-’em” attitude is part of what has made his marketing company, Birmingham-based Blue Wheel Media, a success. It is also what allows him to give equal attention to the family business, Trevco, a wholesale licensed apparel manufacturer located in Madison Heights.

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A conversation with Bishop Francis

Some might call his ordination a baptism by fire; immedi­ately following his ordination as Bishop, he had to deal with the displacement of thousands of Iraqi Christians by ISIS.

Bishop Francis was ordained on June 14, 2014 just two weeks after ISIS invaded Iraq. He is now in his fifth year as the leader of the Chal­dean Catholic Eparchy of Saint Thomas the Apostle of Detroit.

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On guard for the faith

Father Anthony Kathawa, as­sociate pastor of St. Thomas Chaldean Catholic Church has a dual role as a priest. He is also able to celebrate mass and serve in the Latin Rite. Last month, he was sworn in as Chaplain for the Selfridge Air National Guard Base in Harrison Township. Bishop Francis approved the bi-ritual status.

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History's deadliest pattern

The dreadful attacks against Christians in the Middle East by the Islamic State group (ISIL) follows an unfortunate, familiar pattern of genocidal religious persecution. Susan Adelman’s book, After Saturday Comes Sunday, pulls back the curtain on religious violence in the Middle East, focusing on massacres suffered by early Christian churches, the genocide of Armenians, Syrians and Greeks in 1915, and the present-day destruction carried out by ISIL.

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Labor of love

Karen Binno Akouri and Wesson Kassab are wives and mothers each with their own babies. These babies are not children. They are their businesses. They created them essentially on their own, are nur­turing them and watching them grow and thrive.

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A Tahini Tradition

When Ronny Ayar’s great great grandfather, Yousif, went to work in a tahini factory in Iraq, a love and passion for tahini that would span five genera­tions was sparked. Working in this tahini factory, Ronny’s great great grandfather learned the ins and outs of the business, from producing to packaging – giving him the knowl­edge he needed to open his own ta­hini factory.

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