Eritrean Needs Stressed
At the Vatican’s January meeting of ROACO, a consortium of Catholic agencies concerned with the Eastern churches, more than $2 million was allocated for humanitarian and pastoral projects in Eritrea.
“These projects encompass elementary schools and kindergartens, clinics and health centers, churches, priests’ residences and women’s vocational centers,” said Mr. Domingo Sotero, our program administrator for Eritrea.
The Eritrean government, he said, has asked for the church’s involvement. The government, he continued, has even offered land.
Talks Held with Assyrian Church
The prospects of an Assyrian and Chaldean joint commission for dialogue were among the many items discussed in a late December meeting between Brother David Carroll, F.S.C., director of programs, and Mar Bawai Soro, bishop of the Western Diocese of the Assyrian Church of the East (San Jose, Calif.).
Mar Bawai and Brother David also discussed the Assyrian church’s presence in the United States, the education of its clergy and laity and the founding of its first seminary since the Mongols invaded the church’s ancient homeland (modern Iran) in the 14th century.
Friend of Association Honored
Mr. Jack Rudin, a strong supporter of Christian-Jewish relations and a good friend of Catholic Near East Welfare Association, was accepted as an honorary fellow of Hebrew University in February.
Mr. Rudin and his wife, Susan, then traveled with Msgr. Stern and Father Moynihan through Israel and the Occupied Territories where they met with church and community leaders.
Reunion in Cairo
The Middle East Educational Fellowship Program of Harvard University held its first alumni reunion in late January in Cairo, Egypt. The event brought together 29 graduates from Egypt, Israel, Jordan and Palestine.
The Fellowship Program, which began in 1987, brings together human service professionals from the Middle East to live and study in the United States and return to collaborate for peace.
Our Association, under the leadership of John Cardinal O’Connor, has been a major supporter of the program.
Ethiopian Office Consolidated
Brother Vincent Pelletier, F.S.C., has been named director of Catholic Near East Welfare Association’s newly reorganized office in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Brother Vincent will supervise our recently consolidated Needy Child, pastoral and humanitarian programs in that country. He will also be responsible for the Association’s activities in Eritrea.
A member of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, Brother Vincent has served as the Association’s representative in Ethiopia since 1986. He has lived and worked in that country since 1968.
Catholic Near East Increases to Six Issues
Beginning this year, Catholic Near East magazine will publish six issues a year, rather than four. The annual subscription rate will remain $10.
The increase will enable the publication to feature more cultures, countries and projects. Watch for the additional issues in your mail – and let us know how you like them.
PMP Vet of 21 Year Retires
Debora Schak, associate director of our Pontifical Mission office in Amman, retired in February after 21 years of service.
Two years ago, a young Jordanian enrolled in the Middle East Fellowship Program gave an unsolicited testimony: He spoke with warmth of the love and concern of the Pontifical Mission and of the many visits of “Mother Schak“ to his childhood home in a U.N. camp for Palestinian refugees.This former student is now a U.N. official. His is a heartfelt testimony of Ms. Schak’s generosity and love.