Aramaic; The language of Christ is not dead in the Syrian village
July 03, 2009
Syrian Christians: Aramaic language will not disappear as long as there are young people learning it and and passing it on for generations to come.
Middle East Online
Malola (Syria)) - The the inhabitants of the village of Malola hidden among the rocks of mountain still speak the Aramaic, language of Jesus.
Ghada says Cherbit following the teaching of the language of Aramaic to become "the school and the movement of this language for future generations", "The Aramaic language is spoken by locals in Malola, but most of us do not write it."
And Aramaic or Syriac is the language adopted by the Assyrian empire by the 8th century BC Assyrian language; Past and Present and was used as lingua franca a practice which was followed by the Persian empire also, though it was not spoken by the Persians themselves. With some variations It became local language of Syria and Mesopotamia during the Greek and Roman rule until the 7th century AD Arab conquest of the Middle East..
Aramaic is the language known as "the language of the Christ" as it is for the population of Malola "Say it proud, the language spoken was transmitted orally from generation to generation since ancient times.
The Mass held in Aramaic language in the monastery of St. Tekla Alamshad of the Roman Orthodox which dates back to the the fourth century AD . The monastery since 2003has started a summer school for the teaching of the language.
Katja Bader a "19 years old ", a young orphan living in the monastery states : "It is important to revive this language because it is our cultural heritage as well as the language of Christ."
A girl coming from the coast of Latakia (northwest Syria) expressed optimism, saying "this language will not disappear as long as there are young people who will learn it and will pass it on to the future generations."
Today, Syria is another country where Aramaic language has survived. It is estimated that about 60 thousand Syrians who presently speak it , including ten thousand in Malola.
But with the proliferation of television and the development of means of transport and concentration of employment opportunities and markets in major cities, the abandonment of Malola town gatherings by young people, in search of jobs and a better life they depend more on speaking the official Arabic language than Aramaic,
As a result, it is those in the form of Aramaic-speaking and Also Many have emigrated to Lebanon or the United States.
That is the case with Aondios Shalhoub (35 years), who grew up and lived with his family in Lebanon.
Shalhoub says, "I speak Arabic at home, as do the the rest of the community, therefore I do not speak Aramaic, but I understand it. I'm thinking seriously about learning it and teaching it to my children in the future because it is my mother tongue."
To counter the decline of this cultural heritage, President Bashar al-Assad's decided to set up institutes to teach Aramaic in Malola in 2006.
This move coincided with the introduction of the teaching of Aramaic in the Department of Arabic Language at the Faculty of Arts at the University of Damascus, as well as other Semitic languages, Syriac Kalcaldanip.
Ballagea nun says that "the Aramaic language began to die a few years ago," which is "the mother of Semitic languages therefore it was necessary to " open up Institutes to teach and promote the language."
American Margaret Robinson (23 years) working in the monastery for six months, shows her admiration for "all residents of the village who speak this language and speak English."
She adds, "Despite the fact that a section of the population migrated and has settled somewhere else the Aramaeans are trying to preserve their language by requiring that it should be spoken in the house."
The brief Gregory Khoury (13 years) on the book of school grades in English while speaking Aramaic with friends.
According to 13 year old Gregory Khoury joked while his friends were around by saying "Our teachers of the Arabic courses and english do not speak Aramaic. At school we learn Arabic writing, but when there exam in Malola at the end of the year, we cheat by exchanging answers in Aramaic which others do not understand."