Z I N D A M A G A Z I N E
|Tammuz 6, 6750 Volume VI Issue 15 July 6, 2000|
|The Lighthouse||An Interview with Mar Bawai Soro|
|Good Morning Bet-Nahrain||Iraq Buying Back Mesopotamian Artifacts|
|News Digest||Assyrians Join Mideast Leadership Conference in U.S.|
|Surfs Up||"I absolutely love your magazine"|
|Surfers Corner||Assyrian Genocide & Persecution Conference 2000
Assyrians After Assyria II (Melbourne)
AAS Lecture: Hamoukar, Early City in Northeast Syria
Bet-Nahrain Democratic Party Radio Network
|Assyrian Surfing Posts||Nakosha Magazine: July Issue
|Literatus||Mission of the Church of the East|
|Bravo||Assyrians at Australia's Celebration 2000|
|Pump Up the Volume||Location & Residence|
|Back to the Future||Nippur|
|This Week in History||Sir Henry Austin Layard|
|Calendar of Events||June-September 2000|
All blue links throughout this issue are hyperlinks to other sections on this page or featured websites.
AN INTERVIEW WITH MAR BAWAI SORO
22 June, 2000
At a Catholic-Orthodox conference in Washington an Assyrian bishop called for more Eucharistic sharing as a way to reconcile and unite churches that ``hold the same apostolic faith.'' It is Christ himself who binds himself to his followers, not ``ecclesiological agreement,'' said Mar Bawai Soro, a California-based bishop of the Assyrian Church of the East.
``I am very humbly proposing, based on the liturgical practice of my tradition, that Christian faithful whose churches hold the same apostolic faith in the Eucharist should increasingly be allowed to receive together the Eucharist, in order to invite and allow God's grace to heal their communal thinking,'' Mar Bawai said.
Assyrians have a more open policy of admitting other Christians to Communion than the Catholic or Orthodox churches do. The Assyrian Church fell out of communion with the church in the Roman Empire in the fifth century. It and its Catholic counterpart, the Chaldean Church, have committed themselves to working toward reintegration.
Mar Bawai was one of the featured speakers at the fourth annual ``Orientale Lumen'' conference, held June 19-23 at The Catholic University of America on the theme, ``Eucharist: A Prayer for Unity.''
The conference's Latin name, meaning ``the light of the East,'' was the title of Pope John Paul II's 1995 apostolic letter praising the riches of the churches of the East and urging a restoration of East-West church unity. About 140 bishops, priests, theologians and others attended the meeting, jointly sponsored by the Society of St. John Chrysostom, Eastern Christian Publications and Catholic University's School of Religious Studies. Jack Figel, conference coordinator, said the group was composed of roughly equal numbers of Orthodox, Eastern Catholics and Latin Catholics.
Other speakers included Greek Orthodox Bishop Kallistos of Diokleia, a professor of Eastern Orthodox Studies at Oxford University in England; Jesuit Archimandrite Robert F. Taft, vice rector and liturgy professor at the Pontifical Oriental Institute in Rome; Maronite Catholic Chorbishop John Faris, a canon law professor at Catholic University and executive secretary of the Catholic Near East Welfare Association; Father Thomas FitzGerald, a history professor at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Theological Seminary in Massachusetts; and Father Raymond F. Collins, a Scripture professor at Catholic University.
Chorbishop Faris compared Eastern Catholic practice on sacramental sharing before and after the Second Vatican Council to ``demonstrate how very far the Catholic Church has come during the past half-century.'' He said a review of Catholic legislation before the council ``may help Catholics to be sympathetic to some of the current positions of the Orthodox Church. Too often, we Catholics simply dismiss these positions as incomprehensible and rigid, forgetting that they were held -- and defended -- by Catholics for centuries.''
He quoted church laws from before the council which forbade Catholics ``in any way to assist actively or take part in sacred worship of non-Catholics'' and forbade priests ``to administer the sacraments to schismatics or heretics, even if they are in good faith and ask for them, unless they have been reconciled with the church after having renounced their errors.''
He reminded listeners that ``these canons had the force of law in the Catholic Church until 1965'' and stemmed from a view of the Roman Catholic Church as a perfect society and ``the exclusive possessor of salvific grace.'' ``Baptized non-Catholics were considered heretics or schismatics. ... The communities to which these baptized belonged were referred to as `sectae' (sects). ... The only possible approach to ecclesial unity was the return of non-Catholics to the Catholic Church,'' he said.
Catholic were forbidden to pray, to sing or to play the organ at non-Catholic worship ``even if the words of the song or prayer conform to the doctrine of the Catholic Church,'' he said.
With the council, he said, changes in the ``church's self-understanding and its perception of non-Catholic churches and ecclesial communities resulted in a drastic about-face with regard to its prohibition against sacramental sharing.''
The new Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, like the Latin code, still generally prohibits sacramental sharing, he said.
But he said the law provides that for reasons of necessity or spiritual advantage Eastern Catholics who are unable to approach their own minister for Eucharist, penance or anointing may receive those sacraments from ministers of the Orthodox Church; and Catholic ministers are permitted to administer those sacraments to Eastern non-Catholics who are properly disposed and ask for them on their own.
Catholic News Service
Catholic News Service, serving since 1920 as a
news agency specializing in reporting religion, is the primary source of
national and world news that appears in the U.S. Catholic press. It is
also a leading source of news for Catholic print and broadcast media throughout
GOOD MORNING BET-NAHRAIN
IRAQ BUYING BACK MESOPOTAMIAN ARTIFACTS
Reprinted from an article by Times of India, Friday 23 June 2000
(ZNDA: India) After decades of turning a blind eye, officials in charge of Iraq's rich heritage of antiquities are trying to save what they can. Instead of threatening the artifact pilferers with prison, financial rewards are being offered for the safe return of treasures taken. "The size of the reward depends on how rare the items are and the extent of any damage," said Donny Geroge Youkhanna, director of the official antiquities documentation centre.
"We paid out five million dinar (around 2,500 dollars) for a gold coin depicting Abd Al-Malik, the first of the Ummayyad Caliphs," said the 50-year-old. Under Malik (685-705), the Ummayad Caliphate reached its peak. The coins are about the size of an American dime and there are only around three or four known examples known to exist. Authorities were generous too when it came to reimbursing an owner for six coins dating back to the Abbasid Caliphs (751-1258). They forked out their worth in pure gold with an antiquity supplement on top.
Buying back stolen antiquities is part of a programme by the Iraqi leadership to halt organised artefact crime. Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein awarded the campaign top priority after several incidents when up to 200 men armed with machine-guns attacked and plundered burial sites. "This kind of thing never used to happen," said Youkhanna. "It used to be sufficient to post just one guard at an archeological dig."
Archeologists in Iraq say the drain on the country's heritage is considerable. Amid the chaos caused by the 1991 Gulf War, 11 museums in provincial capitals were either destroyed or ransacked. Around 4,000 pieces are missing. "A lot must have been hidden away in Iraq during this period," said the official.
Youkhanna is convinced that private collectors and dealers from neighbouring countries like Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iran and Jordan are sending gangs of well-trained and equipped thieves to steal artefacts. "We've got 10,000 archeological sites in Iraq so the chances of finding something are pretty good," said the official. Among the most sought-after objects are small statues, stone tablets with cuneiform inscriptions and glass beads from the Sumerian, Akkadian and Babylonian eras.
For Youkhanna the "crime of the century" was the "sawing-up job" on an Assyrian winged-bull in Dur-Sharukin, some 400 kilometres north of Baghdad. In 1996 bandits chopped the 700-kilogram, 1.4-metre stone head into 11 chunks, making it easier to transport. Another audacious theft was the smashing off of a large piece of black stone engraved with the biography of Babylonian king Lubbat Ishtar (1,900 BC).
In addition to offering rewards
Iraqi authorities have stepped up guard personnel at key sites and imposed
stricter controls on markets and borders. Contacts with local tribal chieftains
have also been intensified.
With the thieves at bay the antiquities board has now resumed digging in the south of the country. Finding enough students to help out is no longer a problem, said Youkhanna.
That's hardly surprising for in impoverished Iraq the starting wage for a beginner has been hiked from 5,000 dinar (2.5 dollars) a month to 28,000 dinar (14 dollars), experienced workers can expect to earn up to 60,000 dinars monthly - 12 times the average civil servant's wage.
ASSYRIANS JOIN MIDEAST LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE IN THE U.S.
(ZNDA: ) According to
a Mideast Newswire report on June 29th, 13 ethnic organizations in the
United States including Copts, Lebanese, and Assyrians have formed a Mideast
Christian Leadership Conference.
A Press Release by Freedom House international issued in Washington DC stated that "leaders of Mideast Christian organizations in the United States formed a national conference, named MECHRIC (Middle East Christian Conference). The new conference will raise the profile, in Washington, of the concerns of the various Christian communities in the Middle East."
The announcement was made at a meeting convened at the U.S. Capitol by U.S. Senator Sam Brownback, Chairman of the International Relations Subcommittee of Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs, and Freedom House's Center for Religious Freedom.
Participants at this meeting included the American Coptic Association, U.S. Copts Association, Arabic Baptist Church, Assyrian Academic Society, International Coptic Federation, Christian League of Pakistan, American Maronite Union, Assyrian Universal Alliance, Beth Nahrain National Organization, Southern Sudanese Voice for Freedom, World Lebanese Organization, Iranian Christian International, and Chaldean National Federation. Also attending was a representative of the Maronite Patriarch.
In addition to Senator Brownback, the leadership meeting was addressed by Congressman Frank Wolf (R-VA), Congressman Joseph Pitts (R-PA), and Chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom Elliott Abrams. Present also at the discussion were representatives of Senator Jesse Helms (Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, Senator Richard Lugar (Chairman of the Intelligence Committee), House Majority Leader Richard Armey, and Congressman Robert Clement. Non-governmental organizations addressing the meeting included Freedom House representatives Nina Shea (Director of the Center for Religious Freedom), Dr. Paul Marshall (Senior Fellow), and Joseph Assad (Mideast Research Director): Michael Horowitz (Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute); and Charles Jacobs (President of the American Anti-Slavery Group).
The meeting focused on the special historical role of Christian communities in the Middle East and the importance of the spiritual, intellectual and cultural contributions of Christians in the Middle East both to Christianity itself and democracy in general.
Among the topics discussed at yesterday's meeting were the recent attacks on Copts in Egypt, ongoing genocide and slavery in Sudan, continued presence of Syrian occupation troops in Lebanon and the plight of Assyro-Chaldeans in Northern Iraq. In addition, the meeting addressed some of the common issues facing Christians in the region such as religious intolerance, growing exodus, pervasive economic and political discrimination, and cultural marginalization.
The discussants noted the lack of U.S. response and unbalanced policy approaches to the problems of Mideast Christians.
Following its formation, MECHRIC appointed a preparatory committee for its next meeting to take place in Washington in September. The committee members are Michael Mounier, Raef Marcus, Tom Harb, Nagi Kheir, John Mackay, Monir Dawoud, Firas Jatou, Edward Brice, former Senator John Nimrod, Mansor Alam, Abe Ghofari, Jimmy Mullah, and Professor Walid Phares who was elected coordinator.
“Mehmet Yilmaz is not the Foreign Minister of Turkey as stated in your article about Turkey Reinforces Contact with Vatican. He is the Religious Affairs Director for the government, a non cabinet post. Sources inside the Vatican Embassy in Turkey tell me that the issues of Turabdin were raised in staff level discussions. They were not raised by the principles of the Vatican Turkish contact so as to provide deniability to any such report.
I just want to say that the article by Ashur Benjamin was very inspiring. As some of you know we have about thirty children here at Mor Gabriel Monastery from the nearby villages. They are here learning the language of Jesus and their forefathers and foremothers. Malphono Isa read to them the article translated into Syriac to help inspire these children to a higher vision of life. It is hard for them to see beyond the borders of their villages. They still remain in a region where they know what it means to die for one's faith. When they hear that someone really cares about Beth Nahrain, especially a sports personality, it makes them feel proud. One of the students said, "Malphono, does this mean we are heroes (gabore) too?"”
Mehmet Yilmaz headed the third annual religious affairs meeting in Tarsus last month where all religious leaders in Turkey were invited to attend.
Fr. (Dale) Bar Yohanon
Mor Gabriel Monastery
Zinda Magazine is proud to have become a regular supporter of Father Bar Yohanon's work and that of the Syrian Orthodox Church in Turabdin. Beginning this month, through the auspices of Mor Timotheos, Bishop of Turabdin, Zinda Magazine will indefinitely cover the annual cost of the purchase of books and supplies for the pupils in Mor Gabriel Monastery. These items are purchased from the Church Press in Holland. Moreover, a monthly donation of $100.00 from our staff at Zinda will go towards the heating costs and the salaries of the dedicated teachers of Mor Gabriel Monastery. The pupils at this school come from the nearby villages of Midyat, Hah, Zaz, Baksian, Kfarbe, Arnas, and Harbale. We hope that our small gift will put a smile on the faces of these Assyrian children in Bet-Nahrain. The tireless efforts of Fr. Bar Yohanon and the staff at Mor Gabriel Monastery continue to inspire us in the West. Click Here
You come out with the archive just a few weeks before my big day! Thank you for all that you do; and thank you for your magazine and your wonderful work!!! We love you very much, thought our numbers might be small!!!”
Sincerely in the love of Jesus Christ,
Amateur Radio Station, K4JSJ
ICQ Number: 23291405
Ex-Habbaniyan (Now in Rosemont, Illinois)
P.S. I am sure my two unmarried sons will
love to go on your "Singles" Site
and that's why I am copying them with this eMail.
ASSYRIAN GENOCIDE & PERSECUTION CONFERENCE 2000
Dear fellow Assyrian,
On behalf of the Assyrian American Association of San Jose, it is my distinct pleasure to invite you to participate in The Assyrian Genocide & Persecution Conference 2000, in San Jose, California, on Saturday, August 5, 2000. This unprecedented conference will include presentations by a panel of scholars and experts in the area of genocide and the persecution of Assyrians in the Middle East.
Our guest speakers will include:
Please review the enclosed program information and registration. Also note that due to limited seating, advance registration to this conference is required.
I hope that you will join us for this momentous event as we work to advance the regional, national and international interests of the oldest civilization in the world.
Assyrian American Association of San Jose
To register: Click Here
Zinda Magazine is a major sponsor of the "Assyrian
Genocide and Persecution Conference 2000" in San Jose, California.
Congratulations to our reader, Thea Halo, for having her book "NOT EVEN MY NAME" included in the "Recommended Readings" column in the Sunday, June 25, 2000 edition of the New York Post!!!
Proudly presented by the Australian Assyrian Academic Society (TAAAS)
A seminar on the fate of the Assyrian people after the collapse of the Assyrian Empire (612 B.C.-2000 A.D.).
The conference will feature papers presented by Dr. Gabriele Yonan and Dr. Fuat Deniz, as well as a screening of the video documentary, "The Untold Holocaust".
9th July, 1-4pm
Location : Gloria Twins Reception (Blue Room)
Address : 519 High St. Epping.
Cost : $10/person
Ticket contacts : David Chibo pH : (03) 9359-0362 (E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org)
Brian Berro pH : (03) 9465-2570 (E-mail:email@example.com)
E-mail TAAAS : firstname.lastname@example.org
The Assyrian Academic Society and the Assyrian American
Association proudly sponsor a lecture entitled:
"Hamoukar, Early City in Northeast Syria: Rethinking the Origins of Civilization"
By: Professor McGuire Gibson, The Oriental Institute, University of Chicago.
A new excavation at Hamoukar in Northeast Syria has presented evidence that the beginning of civilization in the Near East was more complicated than has been thought. The accepted theories about the origins of civilization hold that it developed first in Southern Mesopotamia (ancient Sumer) at some time around 3500 BC and then spread to neighboring countries. But already before 3500 BC, Hamoukar was a city of about 30 acres with perhaps 2000 to 4000 people in it. This slide lecture will discuss the theories and show the new evidence.
McGuire Gibson, Ph.D. is Professor of Mesopotamian Archaeology, Near East Languages and Civilizations at the Oriental Institute of University of Chicago. He has served in many academic and professional capacities as, President, American Association for Research in Baghdad; Chairman, Baghdad Committee of the American Schools of Oriental Research; Annual Professor of the American Schools of Oriental Research in Baghdad.
His research projects include: Oriental Institute Expedition to Nippur, Iraq (Archaeologist); Chicago-Copenhagen Expedition to the Hamrin Salvage Project, Iraq (Director). He has presented lectures on numerous topics of interest which include: "The Loss of Cultural Property in the Middle East. Art, Antiquity, and the Law: Preserving our Global Cultural Heritage." (Rutgers University) "Ancient Mesopotamia, World Heritage Under Threat," Iraq: A Symposium on the History, People, and Politics. (Villanova University). Feature articles on "Tel Hamoukar Early City in Northeast Syria" have appeared in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, The Sunday Times (London), and The Christian Science Monitor. Dr. Gibson was also interviewed on National Public Radio program, All Things Considered.
The lecture by Professor Gibson is schedule for: Sunday, July 16, 2000, at 5:30 p.m. Assyrian American Association 1618 W. Devon, Chicago
For more information, please call the AAS at: (773) 461-6633. If you are a non-Illinois resident and would like to purchase a copy of the lecture video, please write to: Assyrian Academic Society P.O. Box 3541 Skokie, IL 60076 or email us at: email@example.com.
BET-NAHRAIN DEMOCRATIC PARTY RADIO NETWORK
Please visit www.BNDP.net to listen to "BNDP Radio Network" broadcast. BNDP.net and BNDP Radio Network (BRN) broadcast is an attempt to connect all the Assyrians dispersed throughout the world, to fill the lack of any centralized agency to assume the responsibility of the collection and dissemination of books, magazines, newspapers, audio and video resources of Assyrian-related issues through the use of the WEB. And, to inform and educated Assyrian WEB community about the important events.
To go directly to the BNDP broadcast: Click Here
Links to Other Assyrian Websites
Magazine: July Issue (pdf file)
The Karate Girl, Nimrod Simono Scholarhip, Noosardel, and more...
In the year 635 A.D.. a party of foreigners from the distant West, a vague area known to the Chinese for many centuries as Ta Ch'in, reached the capital city of the Great Chinese Empire, Ch'ang-An, later called Hsian-fu. It was in the early years of the T'ang dynasty.
They indicated that theirs was a religious mission to bring to the empire knowledge of the doctrines and salvation of Jesus Messiah. The emperor gave them permission to practice their religion which he officially named the Ta Ch'in Chiao, the Ta Ch'in religion. They themselves used the name Ching Chiao, Luminous Religion (or illuminating?), and referred to their home church as The Church of the East. The Church of Rome, however, called them "Nestorians," and Its thirteenth-century envoys and missionaries to the Far East always referred to the churches of these early missionaries from "The Church of the East" as "Nestorian" churches.
Who were these early missionaries? Where did they come from? Were they holders of the "Nestorian" doctrine condemned as heresy at the Council of Ephesus in 431? Did Nestorius himself hold it, and what was their attitude toward him? What do the nine Chinese and two Syriac manuscripts, discovered in north China this century, and the famous "Nestorian" monument inscription, discovered in 1625 by Jesuit missionaries near Ch'ang-An, reveal about their mission, theology, and particularly their christology? Was there anything unique in their theology or christology which motivated this great missionary zeal? And why did this tremendous missionary effort end in failure? These are questions which need investigation and which are pursued in the following chapters.
From the Introduction to
John M.L. Young's "Mission of the Church of the East to 1300"
Printed by Radiopress
ASSYRIANS @ AUSTRALIA'S CELEBRATION 2000
Brothers and sisters,
On Saturday June 10th, 30,000 Christians from every part of Australia arrived at Stadium Australia, to sing, dance and parade as a part of Celebration 2000 and the Global March for Jesus. It was fantastic to see representatives of the Assyrian Nation standing together around the track in the stadium. It brought tears to my eyes to see the unity and the love of God showing through the Assyrian group. The many colours in the Assyrian customs and the magnificent FLAG had a great visual impact on those watching.
Many people commented on how lovely the Assyrian group was and what an impact it had on the audience.
As we watched the beauty of the Assyrian group having the privilege to lead the Parade of Nations to the Stadium from Philip's Park, People who later passed by the tunnel while the Assyrian group were waiting to enter the stadium said they will never forget the beautiful singing and dancing they saw by the Assyrian group.
To me, it shows that the Assyrian group has been blessed by God more than they can imagine. In turn, I was told the Assyrian group "glorified God and blessed everyone in the Stadium", just by being there. As member of Global March for Jesus I am grateful to Nineb Tooma, the Assyrian Folk Dancing Group, GFA and individuals.
We have had so much positive response towards the Assyrian group. Thank you all for your commitment, your love and for being part of this once-in-a-lifetime event - Celebration 2000. May God bless the Assyrian Nation all around the world.
BACK TO THE FUTURE
The city of Nippur in southern Bet-Nahrain played a central role in the ideology of Sumer. Those who achieved political control of the land were seen by official ideology as having been given the kingship by Enlil, the leading god, with his shrine in Nippur. Nippur may have been the meeting place to which the citizens of the Sumerian cities assembled to elect their officials.
Early Mesopotamia, Postgate
The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago and the University Museum in Philadelphia pool their financial resources and send out an expedition to Nippur. This expedition uncovers hundred of new tablets and fragments which later shed light on the literature, history and culture of Sumer.
History Begins at Sumer, Kramer
July 5, 1894: dies, Sir Henry Austin Layard, British archeologist and a discoverer of the Assyrian remains in Nineveh and Nimrod.
ASSYRIA AFTER ASSYRIANS II
Presented by the Australian Assyrian
Gloria Twins Reception (Blue Room)
Contact David Chibo pH : (03) 9359-0362
46th RENCONTRE ASSYRIOLOGIQUE INTERNATIONALE
"Nomadism and Sedentarism in the Ancient Near East"
College de France
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or fax 33-1-48-87-82-58
38TH ANNUAL SYRIAN ORTH ARCHDIOCESES CONVENTION
The Syrian Orthodox Archdioceses in Canada and United
Agenda: Review of the past 50 years of history of
the church in North America to identify and cement the strengths and work
In addition to a spiritual and cultural festival, a cruise on the Columbia River, a bus trip to Cascade Range, etc. are planned. Click Here
SYRIAC UNIVERSAL ALLIANCE MEETING
Speakers include representatives
from the Office of the President of Lebanon
For more information:
|Aug 30 -
ASSYRIAN AMERICAN NATIONAL CONVENTION
Hilton Hotel & Towers
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