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Memorial of Rabban Hormizd
By Fr. Noel Gorgis :: Sunday, April 22, 2007 :: 30201 Views :: Religion & Spirituality

MEMORIAL OF RABBAN HORMIZD
Second Sunday after Easter
(According to Chaldean Calendar)
By Fr. Noel Gorgis

ORDER OF RABBAN HORMZD FOR CHALDEAN CHURCH

As we are celebrating the feast of Rabban (Monk) Hormizd, we are reminded of a great saint who spent his life meditating and praying in a monastery in the mountain so as to be close to God. We are also reminded of the importance of the monastic life in our church of the East.


The Monastery in the Church of the East

The monastic life has spread extensively in the Church of the East since the 4th century, and this means  its establishment has existed for several centuries it was founded by followers who were known as the “Children of the Covenant ܒܢܝ ܩܝܡܐ”  and “The Virgin ܒܬܘܠܐ “.

During the 40th year of persecution by the Persian King Shapour II (318-339), all monasteries were destroyed while the divisions in the church further corrupted the monastic life.

It was not until the century when Mar Auraha the Kashkaraya  (503-588) authored and renewed the canon laws for the monks to adhere and obey, and these laws have since catapulted our church to its highest level of spiritual perfection in the 6th and 7th centuries. Consequently Mar Auraha was considered the Great for his leadership as well as for his life of holiness.

Rabban Hormizd

Hormizd was born in Bet Lapat in the Ahwas (Iran) province in the 6th century. When he reached the age of twenty, he decided to answer the Lord’s call to become a monk; so, he took a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. On his way there, he met three monks from Bar Aeta ܒܪܝ ܥܕܬܐmonastery who asked him to join them.

After six years of a holy life as novice and monk, his abbot asked him to study in solitude as a hermit so that he could grow more in virtues.

For thirty-nine years he was living in a cave close to Bar Aeta monastery, and then he took a journey and settled in Deara Bet Abee ܕܝܪܐ ܕܒܝܬ ܥܒܐ and Dear D’reasha  ܕܝܪܐ ܕܪܫܐwith a group of monks.

However, because the fountains of water at the monastery ran dry, they, they decided to separate into groups of two to find a better place to meditate and be close to God.

Our Saint then joined Rabban Auraha, whose monastery is in the north of Nineveh, and decided to stay in the mountains of Bet Aedry (Alqoush-north of Nineveh).

He spent twenty-two years at this monastery and died at the age of 87 and left behind many devoted monks.

Miracles

Rabban Hormizd’s fame spread throughout the surrounding regions of Alqoush, where believers came to him to ask for his blessing and brought to him those who were sick and possessed by demons, all of whom he cured and their health restored.

It also happened that the son of Mayor of Nineveh was sick and the doctors could not cure him; so, they told the mayor to carry him to Rabban Horizd so he could be cured.

The mayor did as he was told, but when they were approaching Alqoush, his son died. The people of Alqoush then implored the mayor to take him immediately to Saint Raban Hormizd as they were sure he would bring the mayor’s son back his life as he had done for many people before. So, he did, and the spread the words that Hormizd restored the lives of many, and they glorified God, whose love prevailed for all, including Nineveh’s Mayor and his son who were Muslim.

The Monastry After Rabban Hormizd’s Death

As the order of Rabban Hormizd was growing in numbers after his death, it was also growing in virtues, holiness, and learning.

Consequently, the monastery played such a major role in the life of the Church of the East that it was one of its leading members, Mar Youhana Sulaqa, who united the church of the East with the Roman Catholic Church upon his being elected patriarch and his visit to Rome in 1552.

Mar Youhana Sulaqa subsequently served the church all his life until his assassination in Aemadia in northern Iraq in the year 1555.

Since then, many of the succeeding leaders in the patriarch position were from the Rabban Hormizd Order, and our church has also been in close communion with the Catholic Church.

The Rabban Hormizd Order Today

In the early 19th century, the monastic life was renewed by Abba (Fr) Gawriel Danbo of Mardeen (1832), Turkey, who further spread the order all through the Alqoush region.

Today six monasteries belong to the Order of Rabban Hormizd, including the

  • Rabban Hormizd Monastery;
  • the Monastery of Our Lady of Guarian of Plants, in Alqoush;
  • the Monastery of Our Lady of Guarian of Plants, in Alqoush;
  • St. George, in Nineveh;
  • Mar Antony of the Desert, in Baghdad;
  • St. Joseph, in Rome; and
  • St. George, in Perris, California.


Mar Addai Church, MI USA

Mar Addai Chaldean Catholic Church
24010 Coolidge Hwy.
Oak Park, MI 48237
Tel: (248) 547-4648
Fax: (248) 399-9089

Congregation Organizer:
Rev. Michael J. Bazzi

Church Founding Pastor:
Rev. Stephen Kallabat

Current Pastor:
Rev. Stephan Kallabat

Parochial Vicar:
Rev. Fadi Habib Khalaf

Parochial Vicar:
Rev. Sulemina Denha
 


 

Rev. Stephen Kallabat


Fr. Stephan Kallabat was born in Telkaif, Iraq.  After completing seven years of scholarly work for the priesthood in Mosul, Iraq Fr. Kallabat was accepted at the prestigious university in Rome.  There he spent six additional years of scholarly work in the areas of philosophy and theology and an additional four years in scriptural studies. 

Ordained a priest in 1966 by Pope Paul VI he returned to Iraq to serve the Holy Family parish until his departure to Michigan, U.S. in 1979 to serve the growing population of Chaldeans.  Fr. Kallabat was appointed assistant pastor, then pastor of Mar Addai Parish in Oak Park, Michigan. 

Hitting the ground running, Fr. Kallabat is credited with raising the necessary funds to provide Chaldeans in the local area a church and community center of their own.  Fr. Kallabat continues to serve the parish and Chaldean community as their pastor.   

Rev. Fadi Habib Khalaf

Fr. Fadi Habib Khalaf was born in Baghdad May 10, 1974.  Fr. Khalaf graduated from Baghdad University in 1997 and soon after joined the Chaldean seminary in Baghdad.  While there Fr. Khalaf earned a scholarship to attend the Urbanian Pontifical University in Rome.  There he earned another bachelor’s degree in theology and was ordained deacon in Rome on May 8, 2004. 

Fr. Khalaf then returned to Baghdad where he was officially ordained as a priest.  Afterward Fr. Khalaf returned to Rome to further his studies.  In 2006 Fr. Khalaf was appointed to serve Chaldeans in the United States.  

In the summer of 2006 he arrived to the Chaldean diocese of St. Thomas the Apostle and was cardinated into the Diocese and elected to serve at Mar Addai parish on March 15, 2007 as the Parochial Vicar.

Rev. Suleiman Denha

Rev. Suleiman Denha was born in Telkaif, Iraq.  He began his priestly studies in 1951 in Mosul, Iraq and was ordained in 1959.  Fr. Denha taught in Telkaif until 1961, when he was appointed pastor in Basra, Iraq in 1966. 

After immigrating to the Unite States in 1979, he was appointed to serve the Chaldean community in Virginia.  A year later, Fr. Denha was recruited to assist the much larger population of Chaldeans in Detroit. 

Upon his arrival Fr. Denha assisted Fr. Yasso at Sacred Heart Church.  In 1982 he was asked to temporally assist St. Joseph Church in Troy, returning a year later Sacred Heart. 

In 1991, he was appointed to Mar Addai Church in Oak Park, Michigan as the Parochial Vicar, where he still serves the community today.