For most of us our journey began in the Christian villages and towns of Iraq and Iran, where we courageously fought to keep our Christian faith, despite the religious and ethnic persecution and discrimination under Islamic regimes. However, here in U.S. where people are religiously and ethnically free, our faith and ethnicity was constantly challenged by a Chaldean bishop. Bishop Sarhad Jammo has shifted his entire episcopal power in creating a Chaldean political entity, instead of focusing solely on the ministry of Christ. Under the message of “love and unity” he continuously invests his authorities and resources within the church to deny and demote the Assyrian identity, and instead promote and impose his own nationalistic ideas upon the parishioners in his diocese <click here to read more>. His divisive political actions inside the church left our parishioners no choice but to leave St. Peter’s Diocese for Chaldeans and join the Catholic Diocese of San Jose in order to preserve and grow our faith while protecting our identity.
This transition to the Latin Rite has brought us great blessings and has produced many spiritual fruits. Our faith is stronger than ever and our hearts are filled with the Lord’s love. Not only we have maintained our Catholic Faith, we have also gathered our fellow parishioners who at one point were discouraged to attend mass. Unlike Bishop Jammo who constantly denies Assyrians, the San Jose Diocese proudly values, promotes and recognizes our great heritage and it is doing everything in its power to unite all the parishioners, regardless of ethnicity and background.
As a result of this journey, we are now the Assyrian Catholic Community of St. Frances Cabrini in San Jose, California.