We are Arab and Arabic-speaking Roman Catholics from the lands of the Bible: Israel/Palestine; Jordan; Syria; Lebanon; Egypt; and Iraq. Many of us have migrated to America as a result of the difficult circumstances created by the wars in the Middle East. We worship in the Latin (Roman) Catholic rite. As Arab-Americans, we continue to be in close contact with our roots and support the Christians of the Middle East.
In 1989, the Arab American Catholic Community (AACC), by the authority of the Patriarch of Jerusalem and sponsorship by the Archdieses of Los Angeles, became a recognized Arabic ethnic community. St. Joseph Parish, our host Church, in Pomona, has become the place of gathering and since has been known as the St. Joseph AACC. Unlike a typical Catholic Parish, AACC Parish crosses many borders and encompasses many towns and cities within Southern California, from San Diego to Bakersfield, which makes us a unique Parish.
Since then, the following priests of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem have served our community as full-time chaplains in cooperation with the Archdiocese of Los Angeles: Rev. Labib Kobti (along with his associate, Rev. Majdi Syriani), Rev. Hisham Thaba'in, Rev. George El-Far, Rev. Rick Vandewater, and our present chaplain, Rev. Ala Alamat. A number of visiting priests from the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem have helped our chaplains throughout the years.
God has blessed us with the opportunity to expand our ministry to the Diocese of San Bernardino. In September 2012, a second campus, under the AACC umbrella, was established at Holy Name of Jesus parish in Redlands.