This week the Chaldean Catholic Diocese of St. Peter the Apostle is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its establishment with the theme “Spiritual Renaissance,” and what a wonderful verse they have chosen to celebrate on this special occasion: “Awake O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light” (Ephesians 5:14).
The faithful members of this great and blessed Diocese are so joyful to celebrate the success it has achieved since July 25th, 2002 when the Holy Father, the late Pope John Paul II gave his blessing to establish the second Diocese in the United States for the Chaldean Catholic Church and chose Fr. Sarhad Yowsip Jammo (then Pastor of St. Joseph of Troy, Michigan ) to become the Diocese Bishop who was on July 18 of the same year officially consecrated as bishop.
This newly established Eparchy chose St. Peter Chaldean Church of El Cajon as the seat of this Diocese which covered 19 Western states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, Oklahoma, New Mexico, North Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.
Today the Diocese have three Episcopal Vicariates ( Southern, Northern and Eastern ) that comprise of 10 churches and 5 missionaries together with 17 priests and an estimated 60 thousands of Chaldean and Assyrian parishioners.
As part of his vision, H.G. Bishop Sarhad Jammo together with his brothers the clergy successfully managed to achieve the following: * The Diocese have been organizing every two year a youth convention open to young people of ages 15-30 years. This year the youth will celebrate their 5th biennial convention in San Diego during the period 19-22 of July.
* In 2005, the Diocese established the St. George Monastery and Retreat Center in Riverside, California that has been used constantly for retreats and other spiritual and vocational purposes.* In May 2007, a convent of women by the name of Workers of the Vineyard was founded by the Diocese.* In 2008 the Seminary of Mar Abba the Great was founded to prepare seminaries for priesthood.* In 2010 the Cathedral Educational center of 6338 sq. ft that comprised of (12) classrooms, library and offices opened its door for the parishioners.
* More than a hundred parishioners from the different churches of the Diocese were blessed and ordained as Deacons, Lectors and Servers.
* The Reformed Catholic Mass of the Chaldean Rite, that was approved by the Holy See, with an implementation date by January 2007 is now officially used in all churches of the Diocese.
* The issuance of the Diocese monthly newsletter SAWRA (HOPE).
* Also on this special occasion, preparations are being made to inaugurate the opening of Virgin Mary Shrine .
The Diocese rejoiced with the entire Chaldean Catholic of the world when on November 24, 2007, our Patriarch Mar Emmanuel III Delly, was blessed and made Cardinal by the Holy Father, the late Pope John Paul II.
St. Peter Diocese under the leadership of Bishop Mar Sarhad Jammo is on a mission of preserving the legacy and history of the Church of the East but emphasizing the fact that full communion with the Pope, Bishop of Rome, successor of the Apostle St. Peter is a prerequisite and essential basis and factor to follow the teaching of the Lord.