A crowd of more than 12,000 people thronged the event at the church in Wan Azizah’s DUN constituency – see Hannah Yeoh’s tweet below.
Julian Leow Beng Kim said it was “with humility and meekness that [he] accept this appointment as the fourth Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur”.
Tiny minority but big audience
The Archbishop’s ordination in Kajang was given high-profile coverage by The J-Star despite Christians in Malaysia being such a “small and weak” religious minority of “only 9 percent”.
A five-hour video of the church proceedings is embedded in the J-Star pages. The MCA’s flagship media is “the top read Malaysian English language news portal” ahead ofMalaysiakini. Placed seventh among the Top 30 local websites,The J-Star online attracts some 820,000 unique visitors (figure rounded) per month.
Thus the MCA-owned media had provided an obliging platform that enabled a potential Net audience of 820,000 pairs of eyeballs to watch the video recording of this Kajang church event.
Julian Leow Beng Kim takes over the Kuala Lumpur archdiocese from Archbishop Emeritus Murphy Pakiam who has been fighting the ‘Allah’-Herald case in court the last several years.
John Ha Tiong Hock, the Archbishop of Kuching, recited the homily on the auspicious occasion – intoning that “pelantikan beliau [Uskup Agung Julian] oleh Bapa Suci disahkan sebagai pilihan Tuhan Allah”.
You can listen to Archbishop John melafazkan kalimah ‘Allah’ at minute 1:47:48 in the video below.
If Umno doing its job, Ibrahim Ali can jaga cucu
The newly ordained Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur said he would issue a statement on the kalimah ‘Allah’ issue when the time is right.
Nonetheless churches in the peninsula continue to use lafaz ‘Allah’ in defiance.
Controversy over its usage has resurfaced to hog headlines again in the last couple of days after Ibrahim Ali escaped unscathed for his earlier call urging Muslims to seize and burn Malay-language Bibles containing the “Allah” word.
Police have said they are not charging the Perkasa president either under the Sedition Act or Penal Code.
BELOW: Tweet by J-Star Bintang Lima on Suhakam’s disappointment and alarm that no action has been taken against Ibrahim Ali
Why does DUMC use lafaz ‘Allah’?
Ibrahim Ali is not the only one to successfully evade police action. The Damansara Utama Methodist Church (DUMC), which was raided by JAIS, was similarly let off the hook.
Bishop complained of “persecution by vile slander”
Bishop Paul Tan was however not satisfied with the outcome of events.
“Begging the Tuanku’s pardon, how is it possible to assert that there were attempts to deviate the faith of Muslim attendees at the dinner function at the DUMC but there is, then, not sufficient evidence to prefer charges.”
“Christians have waited patiently for exoneration from false accusations by people whose intent is to grandstand on behalf of their losing causes.
“It’s a good thing the general election is imminent, because there seems to be no let-up in this ugly campaign of innuendo and insinuation against Christians, so that the ballot box becomes our only recourse from persecution by vile slander.”
BELOW: Bishop Paul Tan blessing Archbishop Julian Leow
What are they doing in Jerusubang?
The “Jesuit-trained prelate” is leading the Christian choir in playing victim. Are the allegations of Christian dakwah really “false accusations” as he claims? Why are the non-native, non-Malay speaking Christians in the Klang Valley so adamant about using lafaz ‘Allah’?
The Malays are correct to fear that the evangelistas want to use kalimah ‘Allah’ in order to berdakwah surreptitiously to vulnerable Muslim groups.
On the Christian reactions to the Muslim backlash, I hadwritten on 11 Oct 2011 how “para penganut Kristian yang lain pula tidak segan silu untuk meninggalkan komen-komen yang lagi keras dan kesat (berbanding apa yang telah disebutkan Uskup Paul Tan)”.
If Ambiga can believe that the BTN is “brainwashing” kids, why is it so difficult to believe just as well that the church under the guise of their community centres – such as DUMC’s Dream Center – are doing the same?
11 Oct 2012
Coincidentally, Bishop Paul was once more the topic of my blog posting on this date – Oct 11 – the following year (2012).
In October 2012, Bishop Paul had slammed Ustaz Nasharudin Mat Isa for the PAS ulama raising what the Christian prelate had called “the latest resurgence of the bogey of Christianisation of Malaysia”.
“This beast of Christianisation of Malaysia is apparently a cat with nine lives; barely is one dispatched than another rears to life,” Bishop Paul said in reference to Ustaz Nasha, Hasan Ali, Perak mufti Harussani Zakaria, Zul Noordin and other Muslim leaders repeatedly issuing warnings to the ummah to beware the missionary zeal of the evangelistas.
ABOVE:J-Star CEO Wong Chun Wai responds in his Sunday weekly column to allegations that his newspaper is a “Christian extremist linked daily”
. Umno’s motto is “Untuk Bangsa, Agama dan Negara” but the PPTA (Parti Paling Tidak Apa) is not showing leadership in this matter. It is instead the Muslim NGOs – not necessarily aligned to the government – that are at the forefront of the battle to defend the sanctity of the lafaz ‘Allah’.
Umno is not in control of the situation. The reason that Perkasa president Ibrahim Ali has entered the fray is due to Najib Razak’s reticence as well as preoccupation with posturing as a “global moderate”.
Same church lawyer involved in police report against UiTM forum
Uthaya Sankar (pix below) lodged a police report with regard to Seminar Kalimah Allah dan Kristologi Nusantara and a MAIS booklet titled Pendedahan Agenda Kristian distributed to participants at the forum held in UiTM.
Uthaya was accompanied to the Shah Alam district police headquarters by his lawyer Annou Xavier, who is also the lawyer acting for the church in the Herald ‘s bid to use the ‘Allah’ word.
Even though the apex court has ruled that the Herald should not use lafaz ‘Allah’, nonetheless the Christians show no signs that they’re willing to let the case rest.
Again I wish to know how much funding has the Prime Minister’s Department channelled to the J-Star’s ‘Moderation’ campaign. The PM in his eagerness to appease the evangelical Christian crowd seems out of touch with the roiling Muslim sentiments on the ground.
BELOW: Uthaya is photographed with J-Star ‘Voices of Moderation’ Marina Mahathir and the paper’s columnist Nikki Cheong