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US Bishops of the Assyrian Church of the East Visit New Syriac Orthodox Patriarch

With the blessing of His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East, the bishops of the Diocese of California and the Diocese of Eastern USA paid a cordial visit to Patriarch-Elect of the Syriac Orthodox Church, His Holiness Mor Ignatius Ephrem II Karim. The cordial encounter took place on Thursday, May 15, 2014 at St. Mark’s Syriac Orthodox Cathedral in Teaneck, New Jersey. The Patriarch-Elect was attended by Rev. Dayraya Augeen Alkass, the Rev. Malfono Dr. George Kiraz, President and Founder of Beth Mardutho. His Grace Mar Awa Royel, Bishop of California and Secretary of the Holy Synod, and His Grace Mar Paulus Benyamin the Bishop of Chicago and Eastern USA were accompanied by Rev. Addai Francis, priest of Mar Mari Parish of the Assyrian Church of the East in Yonkers, New York, and Mr. Zia Givargizade. The same Mar Mari parish committee (motwa) had kindly hosted the bishops for the whole duration of their stay. During the visit of the Bishops of the Assyrian Church to the Patriarch-Elect, the official letter of felicitation and greeting by His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV was handed to the new patriarch. In this letter, His Holiness also expressed …

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Historic Assyrian Church of the East Site Discovered in China

The Sunday Examiner (Hong Kong) reported on 2 February 2014 that the 2009 discovery of a Christian site in China has been verified as a historical relic dated to the missionary enterprise of the Assyrian Church of the East in China. Experts have verified that a niche in a stone wall with a cross above it, found at the Longmen Grottoes in central Henan Province was a repository for the ashes and bones of Christians. The discovery at the UNESCO World Heritage site was made in 2009 and verified by experts in mid-January 2014. The discovery is dated between the Ming and Tang dynasties, from 316 to 907AD. This latest discovery adds to the well-established historical record of the missionary enterprise of the Assyrian Church of the East in China. The full original article is reproduced below:

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Assyrian Church of the East Delegation Participates in Pro Oriente’s 4th Colloquium Syriacum

The ‘Fourth Colloquium Syriacum’ of the Pro Oriente Foundation was held in Vienna, Austria, from September 19-22, 2013, at the guest-house of the Pallotine Fathers (‘Pallottihaus’). The various Syriac-speaking Churches of the Middle East and India were represented at the Colloquium, along with many expert scholars and invited guests who also attended. The Assyrian Church of the East was represented by His Grace Dr Mar Awa Royel, the Bishop of California, Secretary of the Holy Synod and President of CIRED (Commission on Inter-Church Relations and Educational Development) and the Very Reverend Father Dr William Toma, Parish Priest of Mar Sargis Parish (Chicago) and Archdeacon of the Holy Synod. In addition to the Assyrian Church of the East, other Churches represented were the: Syrian Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch, Malankara Syrian Orthodox Church, Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church (Indian Orthodox Church), Syro-Malabar Catholic Church, Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, Maronite Catholic Church of Antioch, Chaldean Catholic Church, Syrian Catholic Church of Antioch and the Ancient Church of the East. The experts included scholars from Jerusalem, Oxford, Washington D.C., Salzburg and representatives from the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity (Vatican City). This year’s biennial gathering was centered on the theme: ‘Towards a Culture of Co-Existence …

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Assyrian Church of the East Represented at 10th World Council of Churches Assembly in Busan, Korea

Commissioned by His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch, Rev’d Cor-bishop George Toma, parish priest of St Andrew’s Church in Glenview, Illinois has represented the Assyrian Church of the East at the 10th Assembly of the World Council of Churches. Under the theme ‘God of life, lead us to justice and peace’, more than 2000 delegates of world churches convened in Busan, Republic of Korea between 30 October – 8 November 2013. The Assembly of the World Council of Churches is a unique moment when the fellowship of member churches unites in prayer, celebration and sets the future agenda for the council. The Assembly is held once every 7 or 8 years. The WCC brings together churches, denominations and church fellowships in more than 110 countries and territories throughout the world, representing over 500 million Christians and including most of the world’s Orthodox churches, scores of Anglican, Baptist, Lutheran, Methodist and Reformed churches, as well as many United and Independent churches. At the end of 2012, there were 345 member churches. While the bulk of the WCC’s founding churches were European and North American, today most member churches are in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America, the Middle East and the …

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Challenges Facing Middle East Christians Conference Held in Amman, Jordan

His Grace Mar Aprim Khamis, Bishop of the Diocese of the Western United States has attended a conference in Amman, Jordan between 3-4 September 2013 examining the challenges and persecution facing Christians throughout the Middle East. His Grace attended representing His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East at the invitation of His Royal Highness Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad on behalf of His Majesty Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein, King of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. His Holiness was unable to attend personally due to a range of prearranged programmes. The conference was attended by most Patriarchs of the Middle East, a large number of church representatives and religious leaders from around the world in addition to senior Islamic scholars from the Middle East. On the opening day of the conference His Royal Highness Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad, Chief Advisor to King Abdullah of Jordan for Religious and Cultural Affairs opened the conference stressing the need to promote a culture of democracy and mutual respect in the Middle East. In his remarks His Royal Highness noted: “We in Jordan feel that, for the first time in hundreds of years, Arab Christians have become targeted in …

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Bishop Mar Awa Royel Visits China

Following up on to the previous visit in October of 2010, His Grace Mar Awa Royel, Bishop of the Assyrian Church of the East, Diocese of California, and Secretary of the Holy Synod, accompanied by his secretary Rev. Fr. Genard Lazar and Deacon Allen Youssefi returned to Hong Kong, in response to an invitation from the Jingjiao Fellowship and its director Mr. David Tam.

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His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East Participates in Middle East Peace Conference

In response to a personal and direct invitation from Mr. Ahmet Davutoglu, Foreign Minister of Turkey, His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch, participated in an international conference in Istanbul. Under the theme, ‘The Arab Awakening and Peace in the Middle East: Muslim-Christian Perspectives,’ the conference was held at the Le Meridien Hotel (Istanbul) from the 7th to the 8th of September 2012. The delegation accompanying His Holiness included His Grace Mar Awa Royel, Bishop of California and Secretary of the Holy Synod, and His Grace Mar Paulus Benjamin, Bishop of the Eastern USA Diocese.

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Catholicos-Patriarch Receives Director of ‘Jingjiao Fellowship’

On the morning of Monday, June 4, 2012, His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East, received in audience at the patriarchate Mr. David Tam, director of the Hong Kong based ‘Jingjiao Fellowship.’ Also in attendance of the audience 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; Mar Narsai Benyamin, Bishop of the Diocese of Iran; and the Very Rev. Archdeacon William Toma, parish priest of Mar Sargis parish in Chicago and Archdeacon of the Holy Synod.

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10,000 Modern Assyrian Bibles Printed by ABS

​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 MarDinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East, who saw the need to have fresh copies printed of the 1893Urmia 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.

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His Grace Mar Paulus Benjamin Consecrated Bishop for Eastern USA Diocese

In the Holy Synod of the Assyrian Church of the East, convened under the presidency of His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch in Chicago from 25 May to 1 June 2012, the Very Reverend Archdeacon Paulus Benjamin, vicar of Mar Gewargis Cathedral in Chicago, was elected bishop for the Diocese of Eastern USA.

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