KUCHING, Sept 11: All houses of worship in Sibu will be holding a special prayer session in conjunction with Malaysia Day celebration on a daily basis until Sept 15.
The special prayers are organised by the Unit for Other Religions (Unifor) in collaboration with the Sibu Resident Office and the Unit for Integrity and Ombudsman.
Unifor director Richard Lon, in a statement today, emphasised that Sarawak could be the first state to organise such an event to commemorate Malaysia Day which falls on Sept 16 to mark the day in which the Federation of Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak merged to form Malaysia.
The special prayers, he revealed, will start with the Catholic Church and followed by the Methodist Church (Iban and Chinese), the Anglican Church and the Borneo Evangelical Mission Church.
“The other religious institutions to offer similar prayers are the Sikh, Bahai, Hindu and Buddhist ending with the Muslim,” he said.
The prayers will cover among others, the supremacy of our Malaysian Constitution, mindfulness in respecting the dignity of voiceless life, seek blessings for all Malaysians, as well as urging Malaysians of various faiths to inculcate morality, generosity and joyfulness.
Other matters to be mentioned in the prayers include the pride of Malaysia in preserving its unique multicultural heritage and giving thanks for the unity which has brought Malaysia together.
Meanwhile, in the afternoon of Sept 15, a forum on religion will be held at a leading hotel in Sibu with the objective to share knowledge on the various religions with the attendees.
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas will be the guest-of-honour while state secretary Datuk Amar Jaul Samion is expected to officiate the forum. Islamic Information Centre Kuching chief executive officer (CEO) Zabariah Matali will be the moderator.
From 9pm onwards, all the houses of worship will offer thanksgiving prayers which is expected to end at 11.45pm.
It will be followed with a countdown segment until the stroke of midnight to mark Malaysia Day with a special video show on religions and presentation of patriotic songs and pledge reading of the Rukun Negara.
“The objectives of the unique event are to strengthen the high values in tolerance and cooperation through the organising of various religious events, to deepen people’s knowledge on various religions, and to promote harmony and unity among the people of different beliefs and backgrounds,” Richard explained.
Civil servants, leaders as well as members of various religious institutions, non-governmental organisations (NGO) and civil societies are expected to attend.-DayakDaily