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Slayed Chaldean Mourned
By Sam Yousif :: Saturday, July 3, 2010 :: 52573 Views :: Law & Order, Chaldean Justice League

California, USA  – Senseless death after senseless death rocks the Chaldean community.  From news of loved ones murdered for their religion in Iraq, refugees able to escape the religious persecution are forced into subhuman conditions and feared dead, and in America as the economic toll of the country takes its course, Chaldeans remain especially vulnerable to robbery, mayhem, and murder. 

For a culture with strong family relations, the devastation is catastrophic.  “Chaldeans value their family relationships,” says Raymond Bahri, a Michigan social worker.  “They tend to come from a large family and pull their resources together to survive.  The family traditions and get-togethers like birthdays, communions, and graduations are widely celebrated as feasts.” 

Perhaps that is why the pain of losing a loved one to a senseless murder over money is so devastating to the Chaldean community.  “Something as priceless as the family relationship being ripped apart by murder is shocking,” adds Bahri.  “It breaks my heart to learn of the murder.”

Authorities on Thursday announced rewards of up to $10,000 for information leading to an arrest in the 14-year-old slaying of a businessman during a liquor store robbery in southeast San Diego's Skyline neighborhood.

Thursday's announcement came on what would have been Sleiman "Pops" Hallak's 79th birthday. According to San Diego County Crime Stoppers, Hallak was shot to death on April 17, 1996 inside Moonlight Market, near the intersection of South Meadowbrook Drive and Skyline Drive.

Hallak, who owned the market, was behind the counter when a robber demanded cash, then fired several shots at Hallak before turning his weapon on another store employee. The gunman got away with an undisclosed sum of cash, authorities said.

Crime is skyrocketing as the economic outlook of the country continues to fall. “Local governments are choosing to layoff police instead of making the touch decisions of reducing other non-essential or non-security related services,” adds Bahri.  “I guess these council officials feel they can convince the citizens to raise taxes if they feel unsafe and threatened.  It may work, but they are toying with lives here.”  

Chaldeans are especially at risk as small business owners remain the number one target of hardened criminals.  States like Michigan and California are releasing convicted criminals back out onto the streets with little or no chance of making a living.  This is causing these former felons with little to no alternative to robbing, stealing, and killing. 

“Two years into our president’s administration and still we have double digit unemployment. When the economy is bad, criminals attack corner stores, markets, gas stations, and other small businesses, says Antisar Denha.  “They know Chaldeans are killed in Iraq because they are Christians.  They do nothing about it.  Plus, they are deporting Chaldeans back to Iraq saying they don’t deserve asylum because Iraq is now free.  This is a joke.  I will never vote for him or his party again. His party is all talk, just to get elected.  They are backstabbers.”

Chaldeans in California and Michigan struggle to convince authorities that store robberies and burglaries should be taken seriously.  Most of the criminals are involved in gangs, deal drugs, and are connected to numerous criminal activities.  In Michigan, Chaldeans in Detroit continue to complain about the lack of response by police.  “It is a running joke in the Chaldean community that you can get a cop to come to your store faster if you offer them free pizza than you could by hitting the hold-up alarm,” jokes Bahri. 

In California, Chaldeans have taken matters in their own hands by forming a Neighborhood Market Association that remains involved and engaged with local authorities.    In the case of Sleiman Hallak the San Diego Crime Stoppers is only offering a $1,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest in the case. Meanwhile, the Hallak family and the Neighborhood Market Association are offering an additional $9,000 for information that leads to an arrest and conviction.
Tipsters can call Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477. Anonymous email and text messages can be sent via

Mother of God Church, MI USA


Mother of God Chaldean Catholic Church
25585 Berg Road
Southfield, MI 48033
Tel: (248) 356-0565
Fax: (248) 356-5235

Founding Pastor:
Msgr. Geroge Garmo in 1972
The current church building
was completed in 1980.

Rev.  Manuel Yousif Boji

Parochial Vicar:
Rev. Wisam Matti

Daily:  10:00 AM Chaldean
Tuesdays:  5:30 PM Chaldean/English 
Saturdays:  Ramsha 4:45-5:20 PM; Mass 5:30 PM Chaldean   
Sundays:  8:30 AM Arabic, 10:00 AM English, 12:00 PM Chaldean

 1st Friday, Sodality Prayers 11 AM – 12 PM
1st Saturday, Immaculate Heart Sodality Prayers 4:00 PM

Mother of God Guardian Angels

Communion & Catechism School
Chaldean Language School
Hall Rental
Wedding Services
Baptism Services
Funeral Services

Monday: Family Bible Study 8:00 P.M. Upper Hall
Friday: Young Adult English Bible Study 7:30 P.M. Lower Hall
Wednesday: Young Adult Arabic Bible Study 7:30 P.M. Lower Hall
Prayer Groups
Our Lady Social
Ur of the Chaldees
Knights of Columbus
Mass Servers
Youth Choir
Adult Choir
Family Fun Friday
Friday Friends
Communications Ministry
Chaldean Teens Coming Together
Performance Ministry
Gift Store
Library and Research
Social Ministry & Support
Chaldean Language Classes
Fishers of Men

 Rev. Manuel Yousif Boji

Fr. Manuel was born in Telkaif in the suburbs of Nineveh, Iraq in 1946.   Reverend Manuel Boji entered the Chaldean Seminary in Mousl in 1958 and was ordained a priest in Baghdad in 1968.  His first assignment was in Telkaif where he served for 19 years.  In July 1987, Fr. Manuel was assigned  to the United States  where he assisted Mar Addai Parish in Oak Park, Michigan for six months.  From March 1988 until April 1990, he was administrator of Sacred Heart Parish in Detroit, Michigan.  Fr. Manuel completed his Masters and Doctorate work from both U of D Mercy and Wayne State University while assigned to the United States.  In May 1990, Fr. Manuel was assigned to Mother of God Parish and is currently serving there as Rector of the Cathedral. 

Parochial Vicar: Rev. Wisam Matti

Fr. Wisam was born in Basrah, Iraq on October 30, 1971. Completing his education in Iraq and serving in the military Fr. Wisam then entered the Chaldean Seminary in Baghdad in 1984.  He was ordained a priest in Karemlees a suburb of Nineveh on July 4th 1997.  His first assignment was in Mosul where he served for five years.  On January 21, 2002, Fr. Wisam was transferred to the Unites States and was assigned to Mother of God Parish where he is currently serving as parochial vicar.  Fr. Wisam, earned his Master in Pastoral Theology on April 28, 2007 from Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, Michigan.