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Australia, New Zealand and Lebanon

Housing Hope for Needy

AFFORDABLE rental properties are being built in Fairfield as part of a national scheme that will offer new accommodation for low- and middle-income families. The 58 properties, now under construction in Polding Street, are to be built and managed by an association between Churches Community Housing and the Assyrian Church of the East that shares the site. Archbishop Mar Meelis Zaia said the Assyrian church had already started construction of the homes before they found out about the Federal Government scheme. “The Churches Community Housing informed us of the scheme and as we were one of the first to apply, we were also one of the first to be approved,” he said. Archbishop Mar Meelis Zaia said that due to the shortage of affordable accommodation in the area, there is already a waiting list of more than 120 people. “The people on the waiting list are mainly elderly residents that can not to afford to rent privately anymore because they are on the age pension,” he said. “As long as they meet all the eligibility requirements, they will be the first to be housed in the properties.” Archbishop Mar Meelis Zaia said the Polding Street properties were expected to be …

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His Beatitude Mar Meelis Zaia AM Visits Melbourne

Melbourne’s St. George Church was honoured with a visit from His Beatitude Mar Meelis Zaia AM, Metropolitan of Australia and New Zealand during a 4-day Arch-Episcopal Sojourn to the city. During his time in Melbourne, His Beatitude took the opportunity to engage in a number of meetings, in particular with the Parish Council and both Parish Priest’s Rev. Gewargis Toma and Rev. Hurmizd Gewargis, where the general progress of the Parish was examined and a number of plans put in place to ensure the continued success of the Parish. On Sunday the 29th of March, the Sixth Sunday of the Great Fast, His Beatitude consecrated the Eucharistic Liturgy for many hundreds of faithful who came to receive the Holy Qurbana and welcome His Beatitude. In the evening His Beatitude took time from his busy schedule to hold a meeting with the St. George Church Youth Group where he exhorted the young faithful to remain strong in their Christian faith and work together for the advancement of each other’s spiritual lives. The success of the youth program in Sydney was discussed, with particular reference made to Sydney’s Ss. Peter and Paul Parish. His Beatitude informed the youth in attendance of his …

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Faithful Raise Over $10,000 for Victorian Bushfire Victims

The faithful of the Assyrian Church of the East have responded to the call to help those in need. During recent church services His Beatitude Mar Meelis Zaia AM made an appeal to all the church faithful to respond to the devastation of the Victorian people. He announced that at this time of great national disaster, a Christian’s duty is to help those in need, and the very least we can do is give financially to those whose lives have been destroyed so quickly and fiercely. As Christians our compassion drives us to act on behalf of the vulnerable and right now the suffering of the people of Victoria needs our immediate response. Thank you to all who have generously donated to this appeal. The funds will be forwarded to the Australian Red Cross. As a church, and as individuals, our prayers and our hearts go out to all affected by the recent Victorian bushfires. [nggallery id=30]

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Assyrian Schools Welcome Dr Sargon Dadisho

On Friday 14th November 2008, students of St. Hurmizd Assyrian Primary School and Mar Narsai College in Sydney Australia, along with their Principal Mr. John Haskal, Deputy Principal Mr. Sargis Makko and all teachers and staff, joyously welcomed His Grace Mar Meelis Zaia AM, Bishop of the Assyrian Church of the East, Diocese of Australia and New Zealand. Students also welcomed to their schools a patriotic Assyrian guest of honour Dr. Sargon Dadisho, President of Bet Nahrain Democratic Party and Assyria Sat, in Modesto California, USA. Students presented poems, songs and other items portraying the quality standard of education provide by both schools. The admired behaviour and respect shown by all students depicted both the cultural and spiritual morals of the students as Christian Assyrians. In His speech, His Grace officially welcomed Dr. Dadisho on behalf the school community and expressed His gratitude towards the assistance provided by Assyrian Sat in broadcasting news reports of the schools and the entire achievements of the Church in Australia and New Zealand. Dr Dadisho expressed his absolute delight in finally eye witnessing the great achievements of the Church under the assiduous leadership of His Grace Bishop Mar Meelis Zaia. Dr. Dadisho said, “here …

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Melbourne Celebrates H.H. Mar Dinkha IV 32 Year Consecration Anniversary

The 17th of October annually marks the Assyrian Church of the East’s worldwide commemoration of His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos Patriarch’s consecration to the exulted Holy See of Seleucia-Ctesiphon. On this occasion the faithful of the church, in whichever country they reside, take time to reflect upon and consider the diligence and dedication with which His Holiness has executed his role as Catholicos Patriarch for some 32 years at the helm of the most apostolic Church of the East. Taking this opportunity to commemorate the Catholicos Patriarch, the St. George Parish of the Assyrian Church of the East in Melbourne held a function on the 19th of October 2008 which was attended by some 400 faithful who gathered together for a beautiful evening of fellowship. The evening was adorned by the heavenly voices of the Church choir and St. George Assyrian Language School students who recited a number of hymns and other songs in tribute to His Holiness’ immense and selfless service to the Holy Church over the course of many decades. Speeches were delivered by Parish Priest Rev. Gewargis Toma and Assistant Parish Priest, Rev. Hurmizd Dawood Gewargis who both paid homage to His Holiness’ enduring love and …

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Seminar on the Humanitarian Crisis in Iraq

A successful seminar on the humanitarian crisis in Iraq was held on Thursday 28th of August 2008 at Sydney University’s Footbridge Theatre. Organised as a joint initiative between the NSW Ecumenical Council and Sydney University’s Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, the seminar brought together three experts who have seen first-hand the situation affecting the Iraqi people. The speakers were His Grace Bishop Mar Meelis Zaia AM of the Assyrian Church of the East, Ms. Donna Mulhearm who has worked with Human Shield in Iraq and the director of the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, Associate Professor Jake Lynch. Focusing on the impact of the coalition-led intervention and its devastating consequences, the seminar also emphasised the actions that Australia and other governments need to take in order to address the humanitarian crisis they have inadvertently help to create. Current UN estimates report that over 4 million people have been directly affected, with 2 million internally displaced in Iraq and a further 2 million living as refugees in the surrounding countries such as Syria and Jordan. His Grace Mar Meelis presented on the situation of the Christian Assyrians of Iraq and the efforts of the Assyrian Church of the East …

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The Patriarchate of the Assyrian Church of the East

The Youth Association of the Assyrian Church of the East in Sydney organised a gathering of the faithful to which an invitation was extended to His Grace Mar Meelis Zaia AM, Bishop of the Diocese of Australia and New Zealand to present an important historical lecture concerning the Patriarchal Seat and Succession within the history of the Assyrian Church of the East on Sunday the 13th of July 2008 at Edessa Hall to more than 500 faithful amongst whom were other clergy of the Church in Sydney. His Grace employed this important academic occasion to communicate to members of the Church in Sydney the most ancient history of the church and how its history has sustained and continued the adherence to sacred doctrines, rites, rituals and practices. His Grace Bishop Mar Meelis Zaia AM commenced the evening’s lecture by offering a short history of the Church and the extensive role it has played within Christendom.  His Grace also explored and emphasised the hardships that the Assyrian and other peoples have faced during the long 2000 year history of the Church of the East and the blood that has been shed by Martyrs for the Holy Church. Within the lecture His Grace urged …

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