On 1 February 2015 ACERO Australia in association with NSW Ecumenical Council were proud hosts of the Inaugural ACERO Benefit Dinner held in Sydney, Australia. The blessed evening was presided over by His Beatitude Mar Meelis Zaia AM, Metropolitan of Australia, New Zealand and Lebanon.
The inaugural ACERO benefit dinner was held with two key aims which were focused on raising awareness of the plight of Assyrian and Christian minority groups across the Middle East in addition to raising much needed vital funds for ACERO’s life giving relief works across this region.
The occasion was a resounding success and saw in excess of 500 guests across Sydney’s local and wider community gather to offer their collective support to the Middle East’s Christian communities. Guests were treated to informative presentations on the subject of Christianity and plight of Christians across the Middle East from the following esteemed individuals;
– His Beatitude Mar Meelis Zaia AM, Metropolitan of Australia, New Zealand and Lebanon
– The Very Reverend Father Shenouda Mansour, General Secretary of the NSW Ecumenical Council;
– Sr Elizabeth Delaney, General Secretary of the National Council of Churches in Australia;
– Reverend the Honourable Fred Nile MLC, of the Christian Democratic Party;
– Dr Ken Parry, Senior Research Fellow and Lecturer from Macquarie University, and;
– Mr Andrew Rohan MP, New South Wales Legislative Assembly, State Member for Smithfield
Additionally, the younger Assyrian generation was proudly represented through outstanding presentations and performances from Breteil Tigris David and Chloe Younan.
ACERO Australia’s NSW Chapter in association with the NSW Ecumenical Council was able to significantly reach out to Sydney’s wider community and as a result a large number of guests in attendance included representatives from state and federal government, the National Council of Churches in Australia, clergy and members from Coptic and Anglican churches in addition to representatives from NSW’s Jewish community.
Collectively, guests helped to raise $35,000 in donations which will be directed towards ACERO’s relief works across the Middle East. The evening stood as a reminder of the Apostle Paul’s words in Corinthians 12:26 in reference to persecution and Christians as one body in Christ whereby ‘if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it.