Richard Lon

KUCHING: Unit for Other Religions (Unifor) of the Chief Minister’s Department, together with the Sibu Resident Office and Unit for Integrity and Ombudsmen will be organising special daily prayer sessions in conjunction with Malaysia Day celebration, starting from  August 31 until September 15.

“The special prayer session, to be conducted by all houses of worship in Sibu, will start with the Catholic Church to be followed by the Methodist Church (Iban and Chinese), the Angelican Church and the Borneo Evangelical Mission Church.

“Sarawak could be the first state to organise such an event to commemorate Malaysia Day, he added,” said Unifor’s director, Richard Lon in a press statement issued yesterday.

He also shared that other religious institutions offering similar prayers are the Sikh, Baha’is, Hindu, and Buddha ending with the Muslims.

“The prayers will cover various topics such as the supremacy of our Malaysian Constitution, mindfulness in respecting the dignity of voiceless life, every Malaysian to be blessed, Malaysians of various faiths in guarding morality and every Malaysian to be a generous and joyful contributor.

“Other issues to be mentioned in their prayers are that every Malaysian be proud of preserving our unique multicultural heritage and thanksgiving in celebrating the Malaysia Day,” he added.

On Tuesday afternoon (Sept 15) a forum on religion will be held to share knowledge on the various religions with the audience.

The State Secretary Datuk Amar Jaul Samion will be invited to officiate at the forum while chief executive officer (CEO) of Islamic Information Centre Kuching, Zabariah Matali will be the moderator.

All the houses of worship will offer thanksgiving prayers from 9pm onwards which is expected to end at 11.45pm.

After that, there will be a countdown segment until the stroke of midnight to mark Malaysia Day with a special video presentation on religions and portrayals of patriotic songs. There will also be pledge reading of the Rukun Negara.

The guest of honour is Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas and all events will be held at a leading hotel in Sibu.

Richard explained that the objectives of the unique event are to strengthen high values in tolerance and cooperation through the organising of various religious events, to deepen people’s knowledge of various religions, and to promote harmony and unity among the people of different beliefs and backgrounds.

“Those to be invited are civil servants, leaders, and members of the various religious institutions and non-governmental organisations and leaders of the civil society,” he added.