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Chaldean parish bids farewell to pastor

By Kiply Lukan Yaworski

01/18/2017

SASKATOON — A farewell celebration was held Jan. 7 for Rev. Sabah Kamora who has served as pastor of Sacred Heart Chaldean Catholic Church in Saskatoon for the past seven years.

Bishop Emanuel Shaleta, the eparchial bishop of the Chaldean Catholic Eparchy of Mar Addai (which includes all of Canada’s Chaldean Catholics) has appointed Kamora to a parish in Surrey, B.C., effective Jan. 15.

Kamora’s contributions to the Saskatoon Chaldean Catholic parish were celebrated during the farewell, which was held at the Cathedral of the Holy Family. A slide show played during the celebration illustrated some of the many ministries, projects and events that have taken place in the parish under Kamora’s leadership.

During that time (2009-2016) the church building purchased on Landsdowne Avenue has been paid off. Renovations and improvements to the building have also been undertaken, including artwork in the worship space and a statue of the Sacred Heart in front of the church.

Ministries offered through the parish include choirs, St. Narsay School and an annual church camp. Many newcomers have been welcomed to the parish and hundreds of children have participated in catechism classes and received the sacraments during his time as pastor. A Knights of Columbus council has been established in the parish and community outreach initiated — such as participation in Folkfest and in the annual ecumenical justice and peace way of the cross through downtown Saskatoon on Good Friday.

“We never imagined we would come so far in such a short time,” said Rick Istifo, Grand Knight of the Sacred Heart Knights of Columbus Council.

As shepherd of his people, Kamora came to the community “dedicated to one thing and one thing only — (to) build Christ’s church,” said Istifo, describing the priest’s dedication to his work and to his parishioners, with a special concern for the youth, and homilies that would “shake up” the congregation. “We will never forget these days.”

The farewell program also included choir members who presented a song and a gift, and a presentation by parish pastoral council chair Ayad Garges. Gifts to Kamora from the Knights of Columbus included a Sacred Heart council shirt and a ring.

Rev. Hani Joro has been appointed as the new pastor for Sacred Heart Chaldean Parish in Saskatoon, and is expected to arrive in mid-February.

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