CHALDEAN ARCHBISHOP FROM MOSUL, IRAQ APPOINTED TO AUSTRALIA

CHALDEAN ARCHBISHOP FROM MOSUL, IRAQ APPOINTED TO AUSTRALIA

Pope Francis today appointed Archbishop Amel Shamon Nona as bishop of the Chaldean eparchy of St. Thomas the Apostle in Sydney, Australia. Formerly Chaldean archbishop of Mosul, Iraq, he retains the dignity of archbishop and succeeds Msgr. Djibrail Kassab, whose resignation was accepted. (VIS).

More to come on the story of Abp. Nona, a friend since my first trip to Iraq in February 2010. Since ISIS overran Mosul and forced Catholics and other Christians to flee, including this intrepid shepherd, Abp. Nona has been living in Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan at the Chaldean seminary, which is where I stayed the two times I visited Iraq. Abp. Nona and I met a number of times in February 2010, visiting a shrine, several churches and religious institutes and some schoos in the diocese of Mosul.

His best friend, Abp. Bashar Warda of Erbil, was at one time the rector of this Chaldean seminary but was named archbishop in July 2010 and consecrated on July 3, 2010 He then moved into the building that houses the bishop’s residence and diocesan offices.

In the first photo, Abp. Nona is seen with children, both Muslim and Christian, at a Catholic kindergarten in the diocese of Mosul. The second shows the archbishop as he cuts the cake at a reception for four sisters who had just taken their vows, and the entire community was celebrating. In the final photo, Abp.Nona is behind Fr. Bashar Warda who is walking to the altar, set up outside at the seminary, for his consecration as archbishop.

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