‘The Candle Burns’

Three generations of family and more than 120 well-wishers gathered at the National Press Club on Jan. 12 for a late afternoon reception and program that honored Mrs. Azar Vakil Gilani (Mafi), author of a new book of Persian poems, “The Candle Burns.” Incoming club president Myron Belkind welcomed guests, who enjoyed Persian music and Dr. John Mafi’s rendition of U2’s I Still Haven’t Found What I‘m Looking For.” As the keynote speaker, Dr. Mafi spoke lovingly of “Maman Azar.” Other family members echoed his sentiments and read several of her published poems in both English and Farsi. Ambassador of Bulgaria Elena Poptodorova extolled the importance of the work of the family’s Azar Foundation in protecting abandoned and underprivileged children.

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