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Fifth Annual Christians in the Middle East Benefit Dinner in Toronto

09 Oct 2019 – TORONTO — Catholic Near East Welfare Association, in partnership with the Catholic Archdiocese of Toronto, present the fifth annual Christians in the Middle East Benefit Dinner, taking place Saturday, November 9, 2019, at the Toronto Grand Banquet & Convention Centre in the northeastern part of the city of Toronto.

A memorable evening where East meets West, the 2019 event will focus on rebuilding efforts in Iraq and features a keynote address from the Chaldean archbishop of Mosul and Akra, Iraq, the Most Reverend Najeeb Michaeel, O.P.

Saturday, November 9, 2019
Toronto Grand Banquet & Convention Centre
30 Baywood Road, Toronto
7 p.m.

“In all too many communities throughout the world, Christians face a very difficult daily reality,” says Carl Hétu, national director at CNEWA Canada. “We owe it to them to listen to their stories and to consider what we can do to help. Events like this one also allow us to better prepare for our own challenges here at home. We cannot take our freedoms and the transmission of our faith in Canada lightly.”

Inaugurated in 2015, the benefit dinner was first held to educate local persons concerned with the situation in the Middle East on the rich heritage of Catholic communities in the region, inspire hope and raise funds for specific humanitarian and pastoral projects.

“Canadians have a long history of protecting religious freedom and contributing to peace-building projects around the world,” says Thomas Collins, cardinal archbishop of Toronto. “I encourage all persons of goodwill to learn more about the work of organizations like CNEWA and to consider what they can do to help protect Christians in the Middle and Near East.”

Over the past 15 years, 2.5 million Christians have been uprooted from their lands.

In Canada for a two-week visit, Archbishop Najeeb will share his powerful testimony on the state of Christians in Iraq — a deep story and perspective that has garnered international attention. The archbishop is best known for successfully saving ancient scrolls from ISIS militants who took Mosul by force in 2014.

Christians in the Middle East Benefit Dinner is believed to be one of the few events in Canada dedicated to bringing together members of the Western and Eastern Churches, along with members of other faith communities and civic leaders.

Tickets to attend the dinner are $75 with a percentage of proceeds directed to Catholic Near East Welfare Association. Organizers hope to raise $25,000 (net) for CNEWA-funded projects throughout the Middle East as well as countries like Ethiopia, India and Ukraine. It has helped to raise more than $70,000 since 2015.

Visit to purchase a ticket or to make a donation.

The Archdiocese of Toronto recently released a series of non-partisan resources to provide facts on various issues, including religious freedom, to help inform Catholics on important issues and encourage them to vote. More information is available online at


Alex Zuchelkowski
Torchia Communications
(416) 341 — 9929 ext. 230