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In Chaldean catechism class the children were learning the Apostles Creed. Each child had been assigned a sentence to repeat. The first one said, "I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth." The second child said, "I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son."When he had completed his sentence, there was an embarrassing silence. Finally, one child piped up, "Teacher, the boy who believes in the Holy Spirit isn't here."

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Entries for March 2008

Iraqi Christians Demonstrate Democracy in Week-Long March for Justice
By Amer Hedow :: 27603 Views :: Government & Society, World News & Odds 'N' Ends

Ninevah, IRAQ - It would seem Iraqi Christians are able to embrace the democratic principles of petitioning government, free speech, and the right to assemble.  For most of the week, peaceful marches have been held by Iraqi Christians in hopes of drawing attention to the injustice and persecution Christians face.  The silent marches send reverberating waves throughout the country as other Iraqis look on in interest. 

Each day hundreds of Chaldeans and other Christians march down streets holding photos of Christian Martyrs.   Loud in action and small in talk the Iraqi Christians call for justice.  The council of Nineveh bishops, which include the community and religious leaders of all Christian communities in the Ninevah region of Iraq support the marches.

Men, women, and children march holding pictures of Archbishop Rahho to Fr Ragheed and Fr Paul Iskandar, all victims killed by radical Islamist hoping to drive Christians out of their land.  Marchers also carried hundreds of pictures of Christian family members who have been killed for their faith, resisting kidnapping attempts, refusal to convert, or because they owned shops that sold alcoholic beverages (banned by Islam).  The protestors walked through the streets of Bartella, Karamles, Qaraqosh, al Qosh.

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Germany May Accept 30,000 Christians Who Fled Iraq
By Huda Metti :: 29845 Views :: Government & Society, World News & Odds 'N' Ends

Berlin, GERMANY - Germany is mulling calls for it to take in up to 30,000 Christians who have fled intimidation and violence in Iraq, an Interior Ministry spokeswoman said Saturday, confirming an account in the news magazine Der Spiegel.

Iraq's Christians, who have lived in Mesopotamia since before the advent of Islam, have fled en masse to refugee camps in Jordan and Syria and say the reduction in fighting between Shiites and Sunnis has not benefited them, with killings of Christians continuing.

Interior Ministry experts in Berlin were studying suggestions from the Catholic and Lutheran churches that Germany declare a quota for resettlement by Iraqi Christian refugees, Der Spiegel said.

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Chaldeans Take to the Frigid Cold Streets to Offer Women Hope
By Sam Yousif :: 49615 Views :: Community & Culture, Chaldean Churches

Michigan, USA - “Despite bone-chilling temperatures and biting winds, Chaldeans turned out to pray and help young mothers reconsider killing their baby,” says Chaldeans-4-Life president Ban Gorges of Mar Addai Chaldean Catholic Church in Oak Park.  “Big business makes them believe that murder is a choice and scares them with doom, gloom, and hopelessness.  We are there to say there is hope, there is love, and there is an alternative to killing for convenience.”

Hope is what the Chaldean vigil group offered to mothers and single women  pressured to end the life of their unborn child.  Gorges led a group of Chaldeans to join the 40 Days for Life campaign holding prayer vigils for 40 days straight, 24 hours per day, out in front of the abortuary located in Southfield, Michigan. 

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Muslim Conversions Spike as Memorials for Iraqi Archbishop Are Held
By Sabah Hajjar :: 28976 Views :: Government & Society, World News & Odds 'N' Ends

Saskatchewan, CANADA - Pope Benedict celebrated a special memorial Mass in the Vatican chapel in honor of Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho. Pope Benedict has called Rahho's death an "inhuman act of violence" that offended human dignity.  In his homily Monday, the Pope called Archbishop Rahho a man of peace and dialogue who paid particular attention to the poor and handicapped in his flock.

"Let his example support all Iraqis of good will — Christians and Muslims — to work for a peaceful coexistence, founded on human brotherhood and reciprocal respect," Pope Benedict said.  Most every other country followed the Pope’s lead in condemning the torture and murder and calling on the Iraqi government to be more vigilant in protecting the rights of its citizens. 

For Chaldean tween, Joseph Markos' leap-year birthday was celebrated this year amid grief in his Iraqi-born family.  "I was kind of sad because it was the same day the archbishop was kidnapped," said the 12-year-old at a news conference in Saskatoon, concerning the death of the Iraqi archbishop.  For teenager Mohammed Abeed Kahoury and his parents the memorial of the Archbishop helped them make their decision to enroll in catechism classes to learn more about Christianity.  

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Entrepreneurial Chaldean Teacher Shows Anyone Can Make A Difference
By Sam Yousif :: 30951 Views :: Career & Education, Chaldean Education & Career Center

Theresa Sitto, English Language Learners and Reading Recovery teacher at Pleasant Lake Elementary in Walled Lake, Michigan

Michigan, USA - Ask most southeast Michigan residents about Chaldeans and you’re likely to hear that Chaldeans are well known for their creativity, entrepreneurial spirit, intelligence, hard-work ethics, competitive drive, and success.   The influential group of Iraqi immigrants seems to have a special knack of turning lemons into lemonade. 

“We learned from our parents and grandparents to rely on ourselves and to reject being dependant.  Our community struggle taught us not to rely on the government.  Doing so will enslave you and make you weak.  We were taught to work together as a family, help one another, and that each and every Chaldean, no matter where they work or how old they are, must make a difference,” says Renee Hindo of the Chaldean Education and Career Center in Southfield, Michigan.   

Can such a spirit survive in corporations where thinking outside-the-box is reserved only for executives?  Can the Chaldean entrepreneurship gene survive in professional and corporate environment?

Theresa Sitto, an English Language Learners and Reading Recovery teacher at Pleasant Lake Elementary in Walled Lake, Michigan seems to think so.  The 20 year teaching veteran shows that no matter what type of work or profession you do, you can make a difference.

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Free Chaldean Computer Classes Begin March 29
By CE&CC :: 29698 Views :: Career & Education, Chaldean Education & Career Center

Michigan, USA – Chaldean Education and Career Center (CECC) and the Southfield Public Library hosts a Chaldean community workshop series on computers.  The five week session invites Chaldean adults every Saturday morning from 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., beginning March 29 to learn computer fundamentals. 

The five week course is free of charge to all registered guests, thanks to the donation of a Chaldean philanthropist and the Southfield public Library.  The course will cover computer basics, introduction to office applications, internet surfing, internet applications, and internet safety. 

The course will be taught in English, Aramaic/Syriac (Sourath), and Arabic.  Guests are required to register by calling (248) 356-0565.  The event is available to the first 30 respondents.  

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Tariq Aziz and His Family Plea for Mercy
By Amer Hedow :: 18 Views :: Law & Order, World News & Odds 'N' Ends

Baghdad, IRAQ - Tariq Aziz, the public face of Saddam Hussein's regime who has been held for nearly five years without charge, is now so ill that he will probably die before he is tried.

Saddam's urbane, cigar-smoking Deputy Prime Minister has lung disease and it is unlikely that his case will ever reach court, sources have said.

Mr Aziz's son, Ziad, said that he was unaware of his father's condition because his lawyer had been unable to visit him recently because of security concerns. But he understood that his father had been moved into a shared cell at Camp Cropper, part of the huge US base surrounding Baghdad airport, so a fellow detainee could monitor him.

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Royal Society of Medicine honors Chaldean Billionaire Nadhmi Auchi
By David Najor :: 16 Views :: Business & Finance, World News & Odds 'N' Ends

London, UK- Britain’s Royal Society of Medicine (RSM) had organised a ceremony in honour of Chaldean businessman Nadhmi Auchi, Chairman of General Mediterranean Holding (GMH), and President of the Anglo Arab Organisation (AAO).  The ceremony, which took place at the RSM building in London, was in appreciation of Auchi’s efforts in supporting the cause of medicine in the United Kingdom, which included funding medical research projects and sponsorships.

Present at the ceremony were a number of Arab Ambassadors, British Lords and MPs, and prominent figures in the medical profession. As a token of gratitude, the RSM has named the main hall in his name “The Nadhmi Auchi Foyer".

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Ivan Kesto Wins City Wide Student Calendar Contest
By Sam Yousif :: 19864 Views :: Sports, Art, and Entertainment

Michigan, USA – “It appears Sterling Heights is a hot bed for budding young artists and recycling craftsmen,” Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Anthony Marrocco said.  Each year the county holds an environmental calendar drawing contest to promote environmental preservation.

All the artists who submitted art work should be proud Marrocco commented. “These were excellent drawings. The judging was very difficult again this year because the entries from across the county were exceptional.”   The winning calendar entries for the 2008 environmental calendar were selected from a field of 700 entries across Macomb County.  Surprising the judges was Ivan Kesto, an inspirational third grade elementary school artist from Sterling Heights. 

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Pope and Patriarch Continue Their Strong Appeal to End Iraq Violence
By Neda Ayar :: 45615 Views :: Religion & Spirituality, Law & Order, Government & Society

Mousul, IRAQ- Pope Benedict made an emotional appeal for an end to violence and massacres in Iraq, as he recalled during Palm Sunday services the death of a kidnapped Chaldean Catholic archbishop.  "His beautiful testimony of faith to Christ, the Church and his people that he did not want to abandon despite numerous threats, pushes me to raise a strong and sorrowful cry: enough with the massacres, enough with the violence, enough with hatred in Iraq!" he said.

Speaking to thousands of pilgrims clutching palm fronds and olive branches -- symbols of peace -- in St. Peter's Square, the Pope called on Iraqis to "raise their heads" and rebuild their nation with reconciliation, forgiveness and justice.

Rahho, 65, was kidnapped during a shootout in which three of his companions were killed, as he returned home after mass in Mosul on February 29.  The killers later telephoned church authorities on Thursday to announce where the archbishop’s body could be found.  The body of the Bishop was recovered from a shallow grave within a garbage dump area further inflaming passions

Along with the Pope the Chaldean Patriarch urged Iraq to resolve peace in their hearts.  Hundreds gathered at the church in the village of Kramleis, just north of Mosul, to memorialize the highest-ranking Christian cleric to be targeted by Islamic fanatics since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq five years ago.  

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Burglars Rampage Chaldean Owned Ramona Market
By Huda Metti :: 39711 Views :: Law & Order, Business & Finance, Government & Society

California, USA - Three hooded and masked burglars smashed their way into the Ramona Market on Main Street Sunday, March 2, at midnight.   Having disabled the store’s redundant security alarm systems, the burglars rampaged through the store for 30 minutes, breaking registers with a crow bar, strewing papers and inventory all around the store, smashing bottles, and destroying as much as stealing.  Security cameras captured the burglary, showing the robbers wearing hooded sweatshirts, or “hoodies,” over ski masks and wearing gloves.

Main phone lines were cut before they even started the break-in, said store owner Rami Yousif after ordering a third redundancy on the store’s security system. Damage and theft add up to more than $40,000, he said.  Safety was one of the most important reasons the Yousif family bought the Ramona Market, Yousif said.

“My family chose Ramona when we bought the store 15 years ago because it was a nice place to be at, people seemed to be nice, willing to do business. We knew that it would be safe,” he said.  “Five years ago there were times when I forgot to lock the door overnight and everything would be untouched. It was Ramona.”

Not anymore.

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What Makes Your Business Different?
By David Najor :: 44390 Views :: Business & Finance, Opinion and Editorials, Chaldean American Professionals

Every Chaldean business entrepreneur is in business to make a profit.  That means having customers, and lots of them.  It goes without saying that location is important.  Having a hotel by an airport, business district, or entertainment district is a “no brainer”.    Opening a store at the crossroads of a busy intersection or highly dense residential area is just as simple.  So simple that you will find four convenient stores facing one another or two hotels across the street from one another.  Location is one of the primary deciding factors for guests. 

If the hotels are next door to each other; one isn’t closer to the airport.  One isn’t closer to downtown. If the location could sustain a million dollars in sales and there are four stores vying for that million we can safely estimate $250,000 each.  Can we?  Will each business operate the same?  Will each owner carry the same goods or offer the same service?  Drive by any corner crowded with businesses and you would be stunned at how similar they are.  There is nothing unique about any of them.  They are virtually indistinguishable from each other.

Limited business entrepreneurs turn to the easiest solutions to differentiate their business.   Lower prices or give more goods away.  This simplistic solution may be a good short term solution but in the long run hurts the business.   The long term fix for any Chaldean business owner is to differentiate their business by offering better service and developing meaningful customer relationships.

And this is how to do it…..

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A Bereaved Community Mourns At The News
By Huda Metti :: 38436 Views :: Law & Order, Government & Society, World News & Odds 'N' Ends

Mosul, IRAQ – The Chaldean community around the world stand numb and in disbelief as news of Archbishop Bishop Paulos Faraj Rahho of Mosul is dead.

Outcry from world leaders swayed no influence as fanatical terrorists proved once more that no women, children, medical providers, and now spiritual leaders are safe from their killing spree.  “These are innocent people that want to help bring peace.  They kill them, because they are filled with hate.  These barbarians have no faith in anything, but their own rise to power,” said Omar Touma, a recent refugee and Chaldean parishioner of the Good Shepherd Chaldean Church in Canada.   

Text of the news, mournful cries, and prayer messages quickly traveled via e-mail and phone messaging reporting the sorrowful news.  Our Bishop is dead, decried one message as images of weeping families huddled together comforting one another. 

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Chaldean Loses Millions in Store Fire
By Rita Abro :: 28586 Views :: Law & Order, Business & Finance

California, USA – “Everything I have worked so hard for over the past four years, I have lost in one night,” said owner Andy Kakoz.

A crowd of about 50 people gathered across the street to watch firefighters douse the flames of a million dollar discount store in Downtown El Cajon, California. At one point, water from three ladder trucks was being poured on the roof while firefighters on the ground busted windows to pour water on the flames. Firefighters from four agencies fought to bring the fire under control. Even two hours after it started, some flames were still coming of the roof.

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Over 100 Chaldean Property Investors File $60 Million Lawsuit
By David Najor :: 47 Views :: Law & Order, Business & Finance

Michigan, USA - "My clients are bleeding to the tune of about half a million per month," says Shallal, a shareholder in the Southfield, Mich.-based law firm Mekani Orow Mekani Shallal Hakim & Hindo PC.

Nearly 115 Chaldean property investors have joined hands to teach Ginn Co. a costly lesson. 

The federal suit alleges the Celebration-based developer misled them on the investment potential of nearly 130 home sites in four luxury communities in Florida.  The Chaldean investors claim Ginn Co. violated interstate land laws, SEC rules, perpetuated a Ponzi scheme after buying lots in Bella Collina, Reunion and other Fla. communities.

The Chaldean plaintiffs include well known and respected community leaders outraged over the alleged deceit and deception. 

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