from anil netto’s blog:
The Herald, a Catholic weekly published in Malaysia, is under further pressure from the Home Ministry, which will be scrutinising its forthcoming editorial on the Permatang Pauh by-election. The edition will reach the churches in the peninsula this weekend.
“The editorial is only asking people to pray for a just and fair by-election. Can’t we Christians ask fellow Christians to pray? Is that against the law?” Herald editor Fr Lawrence Andrew, SJ was quoted as saying.
The paper was given three warning letters before receiving a show-cause letter last month. Its licence could be suspended if its latest editorial displeases the Home Ministry, which feels the paper should stick to “religion” – according to the Ministry’s understanding of the term.
and if you continue reading, you’ll be able to read report from the star and the sun in the same post (together with some related posts at the bottom).
yes, what is so wrong about praying for the by-election?? the home minister’s (arggh!! syed albar again!!) :mad brain must have gone for foreign holiday and never returned. in fact, last week at our office monthly prayer when we had this spontaneous prayer intention, while others pray for sick and suffering, for the church, for thier work and so on, i prayed thus "we pray for our country, especially for the coming by election in permatang pauh and for our merdeka day, that….."
a good christian should be concerned over the country’s current happening and should pray pray for them!! similiarly, a christian publication has the right to touch on the country’s current politcal and social matters and urged the readers to pray for a particular issue. if we christians overlook all these matters, what kind of christians are we??
as some of you are aware, i write for the herald quite often and i would be very very disappointed if herald is suspended… on a mere editorial that calls on the people to pray! that would be very silly, don’t you think so? it’s not that the prayer say "we pray that anwar will win"!! ok i already got hold of the coming issue of herald (17 aug) and here is the ediotorail, followed by the prayer for you to read and you judge for yourself anything wrong with it or not!!
DAY OF RECKONING
Malaysia is at the crossroads! Should we continue to move along the racial path of the recently failed attempt at collaboration initiated by the PAS-UMNO meetings for an agenda of Malay-Muslim Unity or embrace the Bangsa Malaysia reality of the multi-racial parties? This is not going to be an easy question to answer. However, one acknowledged fact is that every Malaysian who travels with a Malaysian Passport to a foreign country is seen and accepted as a citizen of Malaysia rather than as a member of his race. We are Bangsa Malaysia!
Definetely we are Malaysians first and then members of our racial community. So, the impending by-election is also a test case of our status as Bangsa Malaysia. If we can all accept ourselves as Bangsa Malaysia, there will be no clamour for the supremacy of one race over the other.
This by-election is a new journey for al Malaysians rather than one only for those in Permatang Pauh constituency. Rightly then, it is being hailed as the Mother of all by-election. And what is at stake is how the votes will determine the orientation of this country for the next four years and even beyond. It is a serious election which we need to pray for: we cannot leave God out of the picture. He is the creator of all human beings – Muslims, Buddhists, Christians, Hindus, Sikhs, Taoist or followers of othe religions – who were obedient to this one God. Although we may express the obedience differently, all of us must submit our last breath to the one God and no other! Yes, as Shakespeare reminds us, even kings are subject to death, the great leveller.
Theologically, we are all journeying to eternity and we begin that journey not tomorrow but today. We had turned our backs on God when we upset the equilibrium of our nation, Malaysia, through the racial hatred and riots on May 13, 1969. Yet, our God, far from abandoning us, stirred in the hearts of ALL – inlcuding the leaders of the various races and religions – the need to once again honour God. Thus, was born the first principle of Rukun Negara.
When Beiief in God, the first principle of our Nation, is ignored, we may be infecting ourselves with racial prejudice and hatred. These are sins to be avoided in any religion or else we destroy truth in ourselves and society and live a life of lies. What a disastrous way to live, one that can only begets injustices. And we know that there are many abuses and injustices in our land because we deceive ourselves with pseudo-privileges.
How can we overcome them? The answer is simple. We must live truth in our lives and distance ourselves from abuses. To achieve this, we need "to act in accordance with the objective demand of moraltiy." (CSDC #198)
It may seem a tall order, but it is not! With God’s help, we can do it. Let us, during the next ten days go down on our knees and pray to God that our nation will live Truth and experience a Fair and Just by-election.
Remember, God hears the cry of the oppressed. The Lord said "I have observed the misery of my people who are in Egypt; I have heard their cry on account of their taskmasters. Indeed, I know their sufferings and I have come to deliver them." (Ex 3:7-8)
Yes, God will visit us in Permatang Pauh and deliver us. Let us pray!
PRAYER FOR PERMATANG PAUH BY-ELECTION
O God, we understand You today as Lord
not only of individuals but also of nations and governments,
We thank You for the graces you have given us
to exercise our political charity in Malaysia.
We also thank you for the opportunity of free choice offered to the people
of the constituency of Permatang Pauh for electing a leader.
Lord God, give them the courage to exercise their solemn duty
as citizens of Malaysia to vote on behalf of the whole nation.
Guide those voters with the wisdom of the Holy Spirit
so that they may choose a suitable and trustworthy candidate
in becoming the next Member of Parliament for Permatang Pauh
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
note: this issue of the herald’s front page carries the report of the protest at the bar council. gee, so will mr ‘foreign turn over home’ minister make noise again that it is not ‘religion’ and going to suspend herald? btw, the report was taken from the malaysian insider, not written by herald itself at all. this is an issue that concerns all of us and as one who fear god, we need to be aware of it. does mr home minister fear god? he does not care about the going ons, social and politcal issues while he prays 5 times a day? why must ‘religion’ focus on prayers prayers prayers, church church church only, and shut itself to the outside world, the injustices and disharmony and so on? what kind of religion is that? syed hamid albar’s brain is too small to understand that – sack him!
UPDATED: ya listen to his reasoning on what herald suppose to print at another of anil netto’s post– his grey matter is missing! religion shouldn’t care about injustice and concern for the poor and down-trodden?? PIGILAH SYED HAMID ALBAR!!!! :mad