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Ashur Soro
Bishop Ashur Soro Leads Chaldean Catholic Diocese
Bishop Ashur Soro Leads Chaldean Catholic Diocese


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Saint Thomas Pontifical University in Rome

Ashur Soro is a Bishop in the Chaldean Catholic Diocese of St. Peter the Apostle Church. Studying in Rome, Italy, at the Saint Thomas Pontifical University, Bishop Ashur Soro earned his Doctorate in Theology in 2000.

The Saint Thomas Pontifical University in Rome has a long and storied history, with its origins dating back to the 13th century. Founded by monks of the Dominican Order, the university is still administered by the order to this day. Though Thomas Aquinas did not found the school, he was one of its most prominent students, and a model of academic inquiry. Today’s students and faculty strive to follow his example.

As a pontifical university, the three main areas of study are theology, philosophy, and canon law. Its purpose is different from a secular university. In a pontifical university, the curriculum is focused on preparing students for service within the Catholic Church. Because of this the goal is instruction on Christian revelation and equipping students for the spreading of the gospel.

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The Chaldean Catholic Diocese of St. Peter the Apostle

Along with priests, deacons, subdeacons, and 3,000 faithfuls, Assyrian Church bishop Ashur Soro led his congregation to join the fold of the Catholic Church in January 2008. Bishop Ashur Soro was named as Titular See of Foraziana by Pope Francis in January 2014 and serves as Vicar General of the Chaldean Catholic Diocese of St. Peter the Apostle.

This diocese was created in May 2002 when Pope John Paul II accepted the election of Fr. Sarhad Jammo by the Chaldean Synod and appointed him as the first bishop of the newly formed diocese. The diocese spans the 19 westernmost states in the U.S., including North Dakota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas, California, Alaska, and Hawaii.

Divided into the southern, northern, and eastern vicariates, the eparchy's seat, St. Peter Chaldean Catholic Cathedral, is located in El Cajon, California. The full diocese consists of approximately 65,000 Catholics, and the congregation includes Catholics of the Chaldean or Assyrian rite, many of whom are immigrants from the Middle East.

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Special Mandates Assigned to a Vicar General

In 2014, Ashur Soro assumed the position of the Titular Bishop of Foraziana, and the vicar general for the Chaldean Catholic Diocese of Saint Peter the Apostle in California. In that role, Ashur Soro performs a broad range of duties for the diocese.

In the Catholic church, the vicar general works in the name of the bishop, and his actions are considered to be those of the bishop. He exercises ordinary jurisdiction for all episcopal causes, including those assigned as special mandates by bishops to handle discipline issues within the clergy, ideally those corrected with judicial procedures. For example, the vicar general may be asked to perform outside pastoral visits to assess financial discrepancies within the diocese, to examine cleric excesses, and, if necessary, to remove clergy members from their offices.
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