Elder Brother of the Syriac Society: Gabriel Akyön  

Featured Gabriel Akyön, Syriac community leader at St Gabriel Syriac Orthodox Church in Haworth, NJ.   By Koray Kasap Gabriel Akyön, Syriac community leader at St Gabriel Syriac Orthodox Church in Haworth, NJ.  



The Mor Gabriel community is extremely tight-knit, and most socialization happens within the community. In addition to weekly church services, there are also many social events throughout the year. The families within the community are not only friends, but most are also related to each other. Even the children, who attend public and private schools in English, do not (usually) become as good of with those who are outside of the community, as those friends would be seen as temporary, while friends from the community are seen as lifelong friends. The young people usually marry within the larger Syriac community. * The Syriac community in the U.S. is small and where everyone knows each other in some way. The majority of them are from the Midyat district of Mardin. (Gebrail) Cebrail Akyön is one of the most loved and respected names of the Syriac community. He is one of well-known names who representing the Syriac community at the official receptions of the Consulate General of the Republic of Turkey in New York.   


Akyön was born in 1954 in the village of Ayinvert (Gülgöze) in Midyat province. His maternal grandfather, Father Gabriel, after whom he took his name, was the monastic director of the Mor Gabriel (Deyrulumur) Monastery for 20 years (1917-1937). His father, Father Samuel Akyön, served his congregation in the village for 30 years at the Mor Huşabo Church in Ayinvert. He served in the Deyrulumur Monastery. Father Samuel Akyön came to İstanbul in 1980 and took part in the Spiritual staff of the Abraşiye. He passed away in 2005 after 25 years of outstanding service.  


Gabriel Akyön completed his primary school education in his own village and his Syriac and Arabic education in Deyrulumur Monastery between 1963 and 1966. After working as a Melfono (Instructor) in his own village between 1966 and 1968, he came to İstanbul in 1968 and started his business life in the jewelry industry. Gabriel Akyön is married and has five children, four boys and one girl. 


(Gabriel Akyön with his brother Aziz Akyön, who is President of St Gabriel Syriac Orthodox Church for past 20 years and Father Aziz Hadodo.) He has been the Protocol Manager of the Metropolitan since 1982 in the İstanbul Abraşiye. He was a member of the 11th Term Board of Directors of the foundation under the chairmanship of Yakup Tahincioğlu. He fulfilled his responsibilities as the founder and board member of Deyrulzafaran Association. 

Although his children settled in America in 1992, he did not break away from his congregation and tried to help every member of the congregation who reached him. At the request of Metropolitan Mor Filüksinos Yusuf Çetin, he was honored with the Order of Mor İğnatiyos Nurono (Commandor) by Patriarch Moran Mor İğnatiyos I. Zekka Ayvaz of Kadaset on 9 October 2006 at a ceremony held at the Mor Efrem Monastery in Damascus for his outstanding services to the church.  

Akyön's children, Özcan, Ferit and Kenan, have been operating at the Woodbridge Jewelry Exchange under the name Kent Jewelry since 1991. The family had also a jeweler in the Grand Bazaar and Beyoğlu in Turkey under the name of Kent.    


 * Christina Michelle Weaver and George A. Kiraz- Turoyo Neo-Aramaic in northern New Jersey



Last modified onWednesday, 04 January 2023 23:28