ASIA/INDONESIA - New Year begins in the sign of unity between Catholics and Muslims

Tuesday, 12 January 2016 dialogue   islam   local churches  

Jakarta (Agenzia Fides) - A new year marked by an atmosphere of unity and brotherhood between Christians and Muslims in which the experiences of cooperation and coexistence between them has increased in Indonesia. In many places, it is tradition for young Muslims in Indonesia to join the police force to monitor churches and ensure safety during the Christmas celebrations. But this is not all: as reported to Fides by Fr. Aloys Budi Purnomo, during the Christmas season the Muslims took part in the celebrations as a sign of brotherhood and friendship in some places in the region of Central Java.
"It was a valuable testimony of brotherhood among people of various religions: for example, in a village in the district of Semarang, where only one Catholic family lives, the Hadi family, Muslims joined the Christians in a warm atmosphere of fraternal solidarity for the Christmas celebrations, in a domestic ritual", he added.
On that occasion, the deputy mayor of the village said: "We accepted the invitation to participate in this Christmas celebration: we are here as citizens, to give a sign of harmony. Although we profess different religions, we are all members of God's family".
Father Alyos Budi Purnomo, vice president of the Forum for Religious Harmony in Central Java, praises the example of local people who live in harmony and peace, regardless of their religious belonging, in the hope that these testimonies "become a blessing for all the people in the world". (PCP-PA) (Agenzia Fides 12/01/2016)