Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Press Release March 10, 2009: Usage of the word "Allah"

Great to see this press statement by CCM youth. Good sign for the very near future!

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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Press Release March 10, 2009: Usage of the word "Allah"

* Translated Copy of the Bahasa Malaysia Press Release *

COUNCIL OF CHURCHES OF MALAYSIA YOUTH

STATEMENT OF CCM YOUTH ON THE USAGE OF ‘ALLAH’

MARCH 10, 2009


CCM Youth is disappointed and deeply regrets the Home Ministry’s lack of order and clarity in its handling of the restriction over the usage of “Allah”, which involves the Bahasa Malaysia edition of the Roman Catholic Church's publication The Herald-The Catholic Weekly.

The lack of order and clarity is obvious from the earlier prohibition by the Home Ministry of the use of Bahasa Malaysia in The Herald-The Catholic Weekly, which the Home Ministry later categorically denied issuing. Most recently, the Home Ministry gazetted an order allowing the conditional use of the word “Allah” by the Christian community only to rescind it, most suddenly, the following day. These incidents portray a very disorganised and irresponsible handling of what is an extremely delicate matter. This not only serves to jeopardise our country’s image but also undermines the credibility of the Government both at home and abroad.

CCM wishes to point out that the Christian community in Malaysia has been using “Allah” in its worship for centuries. It is, therefore, unreasonable for such a usage to be prohibited and outlawed at this time. CCM Youth is saddened and disappointed with the attitude of the Home Ministry, which has neither shown concern for, nor made effort to protect the rights and liberties of minority groups in Malaysia.

Claims that the use of the word “Allah” in Christian publications could anger Muslims not only in the country but also throughout the world are unfounded. For example, “Allah” is freely used by Christians in Egypt without any objection from the Muslims there. We are confident that the Muslims here in Malaysia are mature, wise and open to mutual understanding in a multi-religious setting. Such claims are, therefore, irresponsible threats that can incite religious violence and must be stopped.

CCM Youth wishes to state, once again, that our national language, Bahasa Malaysia, belongs to all Malaysians and Christians of this country are citizens who also have the right to use it. The prohibition is, therefore, unjust and unjustifiable and is an act of open discrimination against Christians who are Malaysians and who speak Bahasa Malaysia.

CCM Youth urges the government of Malaysia to be more responsible, sincere and transparent in its handling of this issue and to stop this discrimination by the Home Ministry by withdrawing the restriction on the usage of “Allah”, for the sake of the freedom of religion of all Malaysians.

(signed)

DANIEL CHAI

Youth Secretary
CCM Youth

SOURCE: COUNCIL OF CHURCHES OF MALAYSIA YOUTH

Mobile: +6012 237 6102
Email: ccmyouth@gmail.com

March 10, 2009

5 comments:

  1. welcome to a simpler blogging experience!

    You can play with the template later.

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  2. i think what's different about this generation of christians is that they are not afraid to claim a stake in public discourse. in some ways, faith is no longer only a private affair.

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  3. Sivin,

    Yes, Indeed it is so much simpler! :-)

    Z,

    I am so glad this generation of Christians (at least a section of it) are more aware that "personal faith" needs a public face as well. I do admire their conviction and courage.

    I think "my generation" were aware of this need as well but I think we limited ourselves to certain "moral issues" that did not challenge us to really step out of our "comfort zones".

    When I was a young Christian, "politics" tended to be taboo ... and was probably considered the realm of "liberal" Christians :-(

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  4. oh, btw, in class today, i spoke very briefly on grace--mostly just to point out how we don't understand it. :):)

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  5. Z,

    I think that is a great way to put it. I doubt I will ever understand grace. But thank God for His grace!

    ReplyDelete