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Chaldean ADDAI Group Works to Save Lives
By Evon Elias :: Thursday, February 8, 2007 :: 31896 Views :: Religion & Spirituality, Community & Culture

Michigan, USA - Chaldean Church organizations are planted all across the nation, each establishing goals that would benefit the citizens in their area, with their strength and courage provided by God and the Holy Spirit to achieve success.

As Matthew stated in 25:40, “Amen I say to you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me”, the ADDAI group at Mar Addai Chaldean Catholic Church in Oak Park, MI has set out to do just that. In affirmation with their mission statement, part of which declares, “ADDAI shall pursue this mission faithfully through the power of the Holy Spirit and the gifts and talents of our members”, the organization has willingly committed their time, effort and love in ensuring that ample amounts of good come from the souls who wish to aid those in their surrounding community.

The group carries the tradition of Saint Addai.  Saint Addai was sent by Saint Thomas the Apostle to Edessa in order to heal King Abgar, who had fallen ill.  By his good works Addai converted Abgar—or Agbar, or in one Latin version "Acbar" — and his people including Saint Aggai and Saint Mari. Addai is known as one of the great apostles to Syria and Persia and is considered to have been one of the early Catholicoses of the East, following Saint Thomas the Apostle. He and Saint Mari are credited with the Divine Liturgy of Addai and Mari. Addai is also known as Addeus— or Thaddeus.

The story of Addai, the apostle of Edessa, accounts for the growing Christian communities in northern Mesopotamia and in Syria east of Antioch. The fully developed legend of Addai is embodied in the Syriac document, Doctrine of Addai, which recounts the role of Addai and makes him one of the 72 Apostles sent out to spread the Christian faith.

The ADDAI group was founded two years ago, ADDAI has grown to prove that actions truly do speak louder than words. A non-profit group, whose focus is to assist families morally and materially and connect them with other organizations for long-term support, has brought with it unwavering hope for the surrounding community. Moreover, another focal point is “bringing forth re-evangelization and defending the sanctity of life, family and work to educate against abortion”, stated Yousif Elias, one of the originators of the ADDAI group. “ We materially support two anti-abortion center and housing facilities for pregnant women.”

In fact, in November of 2006, the devout members sponsored their first Baby Shower Fundraiser, where they were host of a party put together to receive donations for the distressed mothers and babies associated with “Problem Pregnancy Center” in Southfield, MI (a non-profit Pro-Life Organization). By entrusting their faith to the Holy Mother and the Holy Spirit, the result was a fascinating spectacle. Chanel Abdaal, 27, who recently joined ADDAI, in September of 2006, reminisced about the event and said, “It was a success. God put people who started out as friends and ended as ONE family working together for the church, and the party was for a great cause and brought people from the church together for a great time. We all loved it.”

“We all strive to educate people on and spread our Catholic teachings as well, with the Corporal and Spiritual works of Mercy, and the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit constantly inhabiting our minds. It is done by means of lectures, the church bulletin and much more.  Members even hold group prayers with families. What we have accomplished in two years we wish to continue in the days to come”, proclaimed Elias.

By literally reaching out to the Chaldean community in hopes of walking alongside their brothers and sisters on the path that rightfully serves our faith, Abdaal stated that doing such acts through ADDAI has brought a “group of people together that truly know they have a purpose in this life and who have a passion to do good for others, not for themselves, but for God, who needs people to do his great works through our community.”

ADDAI has asked that in support of their group, they call for prayers to obtain the grace of the Holy Spirit and strength to continue on with a mission they convey as a blessing. Professionals who are willing to offer services to the group’s adopted families are more than welcome to promote assistance as best they can, and donations to support the goals and faithful intentions of the organization would also be thankfully appreciated.

For those who would like to join by becoming a volunteer or committed member are welcome to reach Yousif Elias by e-mailing him at Eyousif@hotmail.com.

“The best part of it all is that while supporting others, we grow at the same time because we give what we can, as best as we can,” concluded Elias, while recollecting the insightful words of Mother Theresa, who expressed that “It's not how much we give but how much love we put into giving.”


Evon Elias is an Oakland University, Michigan student with a deep understanding and interest in religious and spiritual matters. Ms. Elias writes for www.CHALDEAN.org and publishes her work in the religious and spiritual section of the community website.  Comments regarding this article or suggestions for future articles can be sent to info@chaldean.org or directly to Ms. Elias at WithHisLove48@yahoo.com

St. George, MI USA
St. George Chaldean Catholic Church
45700 Dequinder Rd.,
Shelby Twp., MI 48317
Tel: (586) 254-7221
Fax: (586) 254-2874
 
Pastor: Rev.
Emanuel Shaleta
Parochial Vicar:
Rev. Basel Yaldo

Rev. Emanuel Shaleta 
Rev. Emanuel Hana Isho Shaleta was born in the village of Peshabur in northern Iraq. After completing his primary education he applied and was admitted in September 1971, to the illustrious St. John Seminary in Mosul, Iraq. In 1977 Rev. Shaleta was awarded a scholarship to study philosophy and theology in the renowned Urbaniana Pontifical University in Rome. There he obtained a Ph.D. in Biblical Theology. 
 
The reverends impressive work earned him the honor to be ordained to the priesthood by the hands of Pope John Paul II, in St. Peter Basilica in Rome on May 31, 1984. 
 
On June 3, 1987, Fr. Shaleta was assigned to serve as pastor for St. Paul Assyrian Chaldean Catholic Church in North Hollywood, California, where he served for just about a decade and a half. 
 
In December 2000, Fr. Shaleta was called to assist St. Jospeh Catholic Chaldean Church in Troy, Michigan and shortly thereafter was appointed pastor in 2002. Fr. Shaleta’s impressive leadership merited a unanimous appointment as the first pastor of St. George Chaldean Catholic Church, in Shelby Twp. Michigan, billed as the largest Chaldean church in the world. Fr. Shaleta continues to this day to impressively lead the faithful and offer wonderful opportunities and service to the community. 
 
Rev. Basel Yaldo
 
Rev. Basel Yaldo was born in Telkaif, Iraq in 1970. Rev. Yaldo graduated from the National Teachers College in Iraq in 1989 and was drafted in the army in 1990. In 1993, he was honorably discharged for his service. A year later Rev. Yaldo was admitted to Babel College in Baghdad to study philosophy and theology. There Fr. Yaldo, received a scholarship to study in Rome at Urban College, where he completed his bachelor’s degree in theology in 2001. 
 
On November 23, 2002, Fr. Yaldo was ordained a priest by His Excellency Bishop Ibrahim N. Ibrahim, Bishop of the Diocese of St. Thomas the Apostle for the Chaldeans. Fr. Yaldo continued his studies whereby he completed a masters degree in Dogmatic Theology with a focus on Marian studies from Urban College in 2003. 
 
The following year he was appointed assistant director of the seminary in the Dora district of Baghdad, and taught Dogmatic Theology at Babel College. His commanding leadership and steadfast skills earned him the secretarial appointment to Patriarch Emanuel III Delly. Upon completion of his duties as patriarchal secretary, Fr. Yaldo was nominated and selected as assistant pastor to St. George Chaldean Catholic Church Shelby Township, Michigan.