I am the true Light – A Syriac Hymn

“I am the true light,” said our Lord to his disciples, “and anyone walking in the light, darkness does not overtake them.” Blessed are the Righteous and the Just who walked in the light of the truth. Behold their commemorations resound on earth and above in heaven. May their prayers be a fortification to us.

See John 1:9; 3:19; 8:12; 9:39; 12:46.

 ܐܶܢܳܐ ܐ̱ܢܳܐ ܢܘܽܗܪܳܐ ܫܰܪܺܝܪܳܐ ܐܶܡܰܪ ܡܳܪܰܢ ܠܬܰܠܡܺܝ̈ـܕܰܘܗ̱ܝ ܃ ܘܟܽܠ ܐܰܝܢܳܐ ܕܰܒܢܘܽܗܪܳܐ ܡܗܰܠܶܟ ܠܳܐ ܡܰܕܪܶܟ ܠܶܗ ܚܶܫܘܽܟܳܐ ܃ ܛܘܽܒܳܐ ܠܟܺܐܢ̈ܶܐ ܘܙܰܕܺܝ̈ܩܶܐ ܕܗܰܠܶܟܘ ܒܢܘܽܗܪܳܐ ܕܰܫܪܳܪܳܐ ܃ ܗܳܐ ܪܳܥܡܺܝܢ ܕܘܽܟܪ̈ܳܢܰܝܗܘܽܢ ܒܰܐܪܥܳܐ ܘܰܠܥܶܠ ܒܰܫܡܰܝܳܐ ܃ ܨܠܘܽܬܗܘܽܢ ܫܘܽܪܳܐ ܬܶܗܘܶܐ ܠܰܢ ܀

Click on this link if you wish to hear this hymn sung in Syriac. (Translations vary)

Maronites in America – Continuing the Legacy

Address Given by Chorbishop Seely Beggiani, S.T.D., to the Joint Clergy Meeting, Cleveland, Ohio, June 30, 2015. The following first appeared in the Maronite Voice September 2015 issue.

Chorbishop Seely BegginaiThe Maronites in the United States during the past 135 years have not only survived but have grown and prospered. Beginning especially in the 1880s, Maronites emigrated in large numbers from Lebanon and Syria to many parts of the world. There were various reasons for leaving. While religious issues may have been a factor, the principal causes were a lack of economic opportunities and lack of living space. Significant numbers settled in North and South America, Australia and parts of Africa. But it was only in the United States that numerous parishes were established. This may be due to the fact that the United States was already becoming a very prosperous country with advanced means of transportation and communication. However, we should also recognize the strong faith, efforts and generosity of the Maronite clergy and laity of the early decades.

The first part of this presentation will chronicle and analyze the major events of the Maronite experience in the United States. The second part will be devoted to continuing this legacy. Continue reading

My Vision of the Maronite Church

The Family of Maron

  • The Antiochene Syriac Maronite Church is depicted as a Cedar of Lebanon. She is founded on Christ (the cross) who is the cornerstone of all churches and she is nourished by God’s Word as found in both Testaments of the Bible. Her roots are based in Jerusalem (the mother of all Churches), Antioch, Edessa and Nisibis, and Lebanon, the See of the Maronite Patriarch. Continue reading

Growth of the Maronite Church in the United States – Five Necessary Components


The Great CommissionI am excited and privileged to be at the forty-seventh Maronite Convention. “The Identity of the Maronite Church” and “Welcoming Non-Maronites into our Faith and Heritage” are two very important topics that are dear to my heart. Instead of treating them separately I would like to address them in the context of the growth of the Maronite Church in the United States – if I may say, “Looking at the whole forest rather than individual trees.”

The Maronite Church in the United States has definitely grown in the last three decades. There is a high probability that this growth is largely due to the influx of immigrants who left their homelands seeking a better life in this country. Thank God for immigrants! Their contribution has been tremendous to our nation and Church, yet the Church’s growth cannot only depend on the waves of immigrants coming from the Middle East. After all, we, as a Church, are called to abide by Christ’s Divine Commission “to make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:18-20). The growth of the Maronite Church in this country might have been limited in part because our congregations have been integrating mostly – if not almost exclusively – (Middle Eastern) immigrants. However, there are many other reasons why the growth of the Church was limited. My objectives are not to enumerate or examine them all, but rather to propose five necessary components that will Lead to the growth of the Maronite Church in the United States. Continue reading

Catechetical, Liturgical, and Biblical Implications of the Hoosoyo in Contemporary Maronite Tradition

Written by Fr. Anthony Salim, Pastor of  St. Joseph Maronite Church, Olean, NY and author of Captivated by your Teachings

Captivated by your TeachingsWhen Professor Miller asked me to consider presenting a paper at this symposium, he told me that he wanted to have a living witness to the ideas in the papers of the other presenters. I genuinely think that the current liturgical tradition of the Maronite Church fits the bill. Thus, the purpose of this paper will be to demonstrate how a central liturgical form of the Antiochene West Syriac Tradition, namely the hoosoyo, has come to be understood as a both an effective catechetical tool on passing on the Faith and a source for Maronite interpretation of the Bible. Continue reading

To Be a Maronite, to Be a Maronite in the United States

Written by Chorbishop Seely Beggiani, Rector of Our Lady Of Lebanon Maronite Seminary, Washington, D.C.

Maronite SeminaryTo be a person of faith involves several dimensions. Religious faith is the conviction that all of reality, despite the many aspects of life that seem to go wrong, is radically good and has an ultimate purpose. Faith arises from an encounter where God offers us his unconditioned love and awaits our response. For the Christian, faith is the choice to see God, the world, and ourselves through the eyes of Jesus Christ, and the decision to live our lives according to His teachings and His way of life. Faith is embodied in liturgical worship, creeds, a code of morality, and commitments to action especially against injustice.

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Catholic Religious Formation: it’s not Just for Kids

Written by Fr. Anthony Salim, Pastor of  St. Joseph Maronite Church, Olean, NY and author of Captivated by your Teachings

Fr. Anthony SalimWhen Jesus taught the people, he taught simply. The Evangelist Mark remembered this way, in the 33rd verse of his Gospel’s 4th chapter: With many similar parables Jesus spoke the word to them, as much as they could understand.

In one of those parables, Jesus compared the Kingdom to that of pearls, for which, if one was willing to do the important work to discover them, this discovery would be worth more than any other treasure. As Matthew recalled: Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it (13:45-46).

Indeed, one of the greatest Teachers of the Syriac Church Tradition, out of which much of our own Maronite Tradition flows, compared the teaching of the Church to a fine, yet hidden, pearl. If we wish to discover it, we must be willing to pay the price. That price, of course, can be paid in joy and enthusiasm; if so, we will enjoy the results all the more.

Religious education is one way that our common Catholic Tradition uses to discover the precious pearls of Christian wisdom that help us discover what is truly meaningful for our lives and our Syriac-Maronite Church is no exception. Under the guidance of the teaching office (teaching responsibility) of the bishops of the Church, known as the “Magisterium,” under the watchfulness of the Bishop of Rome, the truths revealed by God from Jesus and found in the Bible and in the Tradition of the Church are made known to us.

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