احتفالية تخرج خمسين طالبا من الجامعة الكاثوليكية باربيل وبدء السنة الدراسية
تخرج خمسون طالبة وطالبا من الجماعة الكاثوليكية باحتفال مهيب وفي غاية التظيم حضره غبطة البطريرك الكاردينال لويس روفائيل ساكو والسفير البابوي المطران ميتجا لوسكوفار والسيد فوزي حريري ممثلا عن رئيس الإقليم، وعدد من الوزراء والقناصلة واساقفة وشخصيات حكومية وحزبية . ترأس الاحتفالية مؤسس الجامعة ومستشارها Chancellor سيادة المطران بشار متي وردة ورئيس الجامعة الدكتور شابلا وحضرها والأساتذة والطلاب الخريجون وأهاليهم . بدأ الاحتفال بالسلام الوطني ثم لإقليم كردستان. وكانت ثمة كلمة للمطران بشار ثم للبطريرك ساكو ولرئيس الجامعة وممثل للطلاب ثم وزعت الشهادات على الخريجين. تخلل الاحتفال مقاطع موسيقية وبعض الاغاني الفولكلورية. تهني البطريركية الجامعة الكاثوليكية باربيل على فوج التخرج والبدء بالسنة الاكاديمية.
وهذه كلمة البطريرك ساكو بالانجليزية لان كل الكلمات جاءت في هذه اللغة.
The Speech of H,B. Cardinal Sako in Graduation of Catholic University of Erbil (CUE)
29 Sept 2022
I would like to thank His Excellency Archbishop Bashar Warda for establishing this great university which has achieved so much in so little time. It is a university which goes side by side with the social teaching of the Catholic Church. As we all know, the Church has always been concerned with teaching and education through the establishment of schools, educational institutes, universities, and cultural centres. In addition, the Church has consistently shown very strong leadership to encourage and inspire the written word, hence the large number of libraries and manuscripts held within monasteries, leaving us a great and rich intellectual and cultural legacy in all fields.
One of the best examples to mention here is “Bayt Al-Hikmah” literally translated as “House of Wisdom” in Baghdad at the time of the Abbasids dynasty. Most of its employees were Christians, and some of them were Clergy.
Apart from this wonderful graduation celebrating these great young achievers, I would like also to congratulate the Catholic University of Erbil on the beginning of its new academic year (2022 – 2023). It is another chapter of the success story through which students of all faiths can work hard to build and improve themselves by studying, working together, and researching in both scientific and disciplined ways.
Such institutions, especially non-governmental ones, certainly help to build good relationships between all the students, respecting the rights of individuals, encouraging, and consolidating a harmonious acceptance of the other. This coexistence is sadly currently declining around the world. Yet we can proudly say here that it is still well and alive in the Kurdistan region. Thank God,
Coexistence comes on several levels:
- religiously, we all believe in one God, even though our expressions are different,
- socially, we are all brothers under the one umbrella of humanity,
- politically we are all citizens of the same country holding the same identity.
However, religious extremism has distorted coexistence, politicised sectarianism, demolished citizenship, erecting walls between peace loving citizens, allowing corruption to undermine and destroy an historic and ancient society and the Iraqi fabric.
At the university, it is your great chance to get to know each other from different backgrounds, faiths, sects, and nationalities. You will grow and mature in how to deal and interact with each other, always respecting diversity and the acceptance of the other: that allows the sharing of a deep and historical cultural richness. There is no problem to “be who are you”: what matters, is to live in love and peace, earnestly cooperating with each other, respecting them, and honouring the common good. Always will the good of the other.
The role of educational institutions is not solely to educate students for the purpose of finding a job for their own personal benefit, but rather to educate and encourage the new generation on openness, respect for diversity, pluralism and the consolidation of coexistence and acceptance, through:
- Improved education to all, to reverse the growing number of illiterates in Iraq.
- Develop students’ interpersonal and relationship skills through acceptance, respect, honest dialogue, and genuine friendship.
- Strengthen acceptance, reconciliation and solidarity between different peoples, faiths, and cultures, to achieve peace and prosperity for all citizens, as Pope Francis reiterated during his visit to Iraq in March 2021.
Such vital education is the basis for acceptance, strong coexistence to combat the present conflicts, divisions and barriers that are the result of ignorance, a uniform culture, greed, and personal interests.
From this standpoint, I call on all officials and educators to review the inherited traditions with love, open minds, and good sense. Please CHANGE them and remove all expressions of fundamentalism, hatred, and disrespect from curricula. This not only matches the current reality and societal diversity but sows the seeds for us to grow as a peaceful and loving society. Also, you must work diligently and hard to build a civil and democratic society grounded on citizenship and not on a sectarian system that “divides” the country based on their personal wishes.
We live in a new world that highlights the vital importance of cultural diversity, freedom of expression and religion. This is in line with the global approach to equal human rights, respecting everyone’s freedom, faith, and dignity to house, feed, educate and clothe their family.
This is the rich future that university students should think about, be educated, and well prepared for.
Wishing you all the best and much success.