LAST EDITED ON Oct-30-00 AT 07:14 PM (CST)
Shlama Akhi Salam,
I have to answer your email here as well , I hope you are reading this forum. I hope you don't mind if I use your quotes prior to my answer:
"I thank you for your kind reply and am happy to learn that you are Lebanese. I myself am from Ible Saqi (I hear the name is Aramaic in origin) in the South but now live in London. You seem extremely well versed in Semitic languages and religion so I was wondering that perhaps you have some Suriani or Assyrian blood, or maybe your interest comes from pure intrigue like mine. Please feel free to tell me more of your Lebanese backround."
Yes, my parents were both born in Lebanon. Their parents escaped (barely) the Assyrian genocide by the Turks and Kurds in 1915-1918, when 2/3 of our people were slaughtered for being Christian. This was in Adiabene, Assyria (the Hakkari mountains). I am from the tribe of Tkhuma, one of the "independent" tribes of Assyrians who lived in the mountains north of Nineveh, Assyria.
They arrived in Lebanon as refugees, and because Lebanon was a Christian safe-haven (comparitively speaking).
So both of my parents were born and raised in the north, near Beirut.
Just before the civil war broke out, they arrived in the US (around 1970).....I was born here along with my younger brother. My 2 older sisters were born in Beirut.
My family (except for my younger brother and I) speak both Aramaic/Syriac and Arabic fluently....but they never taught the 2 boys Arabic ......we speak only Aramaic.
" However now I have become even more interested in the Nestorian church.I understand that they are non-Ehephesine by theology and once stood as a monument to the faith throughout Asia before being reduced through persecution and has been subject to division. I also understand that the Iraqi Nestorians preserve some of the oldest Christian practices that have been lost in many other Churches both Eastern and Western. I was wondering if I could ask you 2 questions on the subject;
-I have heard many refernces Iraqi Christian sects such as 'Church of the East' and 'Chaldean'. Which one is the Nestorian Church and which one is its offshoot which is in communian with Rome? I would be grateful if you could clarify this for me.
-Do you know of a Nestorian community or church in London. I am eager to observe their rites and practices and get some furhter insight. I would be eternally grateful if you could fill me in on any information you have on this.
Yes, the Church of the East is non-Ephesine in theology, and therefore we are not currently in communion with any other ecclessial body....although there is a significant effort by our Church to unite with our other brethren in the other Middle Eastern Churches.
Much of the Ecuemenical talks have been held with the Latin Catholic and Oriental Orthodox (Syriac) churches.
What has been traditionally called the "Church of the East" has been nicknamed throughout the last 1500 years - "Nestorian". It's sister Church, another branch of the Church of the East which is in communion with Rome is called the "Chaldean Catholic Church". The Chaldean Church entered into communion with the Latin church in the 16th century.
In fact, there is a large Assyrian community in London and we have a church there....here is the info:
St. Mary Parish
Reverend Father Stephen Yalda Turkhan
Westminster Road, Hanwell,
London W7 3TU, UK
Phone: 0181-567 1814
Fax: 0181-567 1814
I hope this helps, and God be with you (Alah Maak).
Shlama w'Burkate, (Peace and Blessings)