After more than a year of close collaboration between the American Bible Society (ABS) based in New York and the Commission on Inter-Church Relations and Educational Development (CIRED), the project of reprinting 10,000 modern Assyrian language Bibles has now come to fruition. The project began in mid 2011 at the express request of His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East, who saw the need to have fresh copies printed of the 1893 Urmia edition of the Modern Assyrian Bible, as all copies reprinted until then had been exhausted worldwide, in order for the faithful to be closer to the word of the Lord and to regularly read the Sacred Scriptures.
His Grace Mar Awa Royel, President of CIRED, was charged by His Holiness with heading this project. CIRED came into contact with the good offices of the Rev. Emilio Reyes, Executive Director of the ‘Multi-language Ministries’ of the ABS and Mrs. Nadia Cavner, a member of the board of directors of ABS. A preliminary meeting was held in September of 2012 at the Church’s headquarters in the Central Valley, and from then the process began to take its course.
The presentation and release of the reprinted Assyrian language Bible was launched on Sunday, June 3, 2012 at St. Andrew’s Parish in Glenview. On the occasion of the consecration of the new altar of the same church, His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV welcomed the guests from the ABS and thanked them for their generosity in undertaking this important project for the greater spiritual welfare of the faithful. His Holiness further thanked CIRED for its efforts in the project as well. At the close of the Eucharistic Liturgy, His Holiness distributed copies of the reprinted Scriptures to a number of the clergy and faithful present for the church consecration, in the presence of all of the prelates who were present for the occasion, and who also received a complimentary copy of the reprinted Assyrian Bible.
On the evening of the same Sunday, His Holiness received in audience at the patriarchate the members of the ABS present for the Bible presentation. Also in attendance were: Their Graces Mar Awa Royel, Bishop of California, President of CIRED and Secretary of the Holy Synod; Mar Paulus Benjamin, the newly consecrated Bishop of the Diocese of Eastern USA;and Mar Narsai Benyamin, Bishop of the Diocese of Iran. The representatives of the ABS officially presented His Holiness with a burgundy-cover copy of the reprinted Scriptures. His Holiness thanked the ABS representatives for their efforts, and they in turn assured the Patriarch that they would like to continue collaborating with the Assyrian Church of the East in order to promote further the reading of the Scriptures in the Assyrian mother-tongue of the faithful.
Copies of the newly published bible edition will be made available to faithful directly through Assyrian Church of the East dioceses worldwide.[nggallery id=393]