March 16, 2007
For Immediate Release

KLEES: Iranian New Year’s Day Links Ancient
Tradition With Contemporary Canadian Society

(Queen’s Park)  Oak Ridges MPP Frank Klees, the PC Education and Citizenship & Immigration Critic, today made the following statement on the occasion of the Iranian New Year:

“The Iranian New Year or Norouz not only pays tribute to the many ongoing contributions to Canada of the Iranian-Canadian Community, but it is also an opportunity to reflect on how the ancient culture of Persia/Iran lies at the foundation of our contemporary society as a whole.

“It was from Ur that Abraham, the father of all believers, set out to fulfill his mission and it was from Persia that the three Wise Men, whom scholars today affirm were Zoroastrians, travelled westward following the Star of Bethlehem and who, according to tradition, are buried in the Cathedral of Cologne in Germany. 

It was a member of the Persian Church who visited King Edward I in England and was received by him with full diplomatic honours as a guest representing the very origins of Western civilization.  This visit sparked renewed interest in the West in studying Persian language and culture that led to the great work of the Oxford scholar, Henry Martyn, in the 18th century.

“We are all heirs who are indebted to the great spiritual and cultural traditions of Persia/Iran.  On behalf of John Tory and the entire Ontario PC Caucus, I wish our entire Iranian-Canadian Community a happy Norouz 1386!

-30-

For further information

Frank Klees, MPP

416-325-7316

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