On Saturday, June 9th, 2018, under the auspices of His Eminence Mor Dionysius John Kawak, the Archdiocese Educational Affairs Committee and the Suryoyto Women’s Group, hosted the First Annual Sayfo Art Contest. Youth from across the Syriac Orthodox Archdiocese for the Eastern United States were encouraged to enter the contest, which included the themes of art and writing. In addition, three age groups categorized the contest: 11 – 13 years, 14 – 17 years, and 18 – 22 years.
Two winners were selected from each age group, one for art and one for writing. All contestants were recognized and received participation certificates for their efforts. The six winners received monetary awards, sponsored by Dr. Yamo Barslibo Deniz, in memory of his late father Makdshoyo Musa Barslibo Deniz, with support from the archdiocese. Twenty-three amazing art and writing pieces were submitted, commemorating the martyrs of Sayfo, the Syriac Genocide of 1915.
The event, which drew in over 100 people from the Eastern Archdiocese, began with the art exhibition at the Mor Aphrem Center, followed by evening prayers and martyrs’ commemoration, welcome speech by H.E. Mor Dionysius John Kawak, “The Legacy of Sayfo” lecture with Q & A by Malfono Sabri Atman, and contest awards presentation, all at St. Mark’s Cathedral. To conclude the evening, guests were invited back to the Mor Aphrem Center for refreshments and to view the creative art and writing pieces.