By Jaythaleela K
MIRI, April 14: Communicating in different languages plays a crucial role in developing understanding of the religion of Islam, says Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.
“Muslims are not only required to recite daily prayers in Arabic …but other languages as well to help convey messages to others,” he opined.
Speaking at the earthbreaking ceremony for a mosque at Pujut 5 on Sunday morning, Abang Johari recalled during his younger days, when he had went to a mosque for Friday prayers which had an Imam preaching in the Urdu language, noting that those in mosque at that time seemed to understand the sermon.
He added, using other languages besides Arabic during sermons (‘khutbah’) is a holistic approach to let others know (especially non-Muslims) what is Islam and cultivate better understanding about the religion.
“In Kuching there is a mosque whereby they are using the English language during the sermon….it works in coveying messages,” he said.
He added, people in Sarawak are fortunate as they are living in peace and harmony with one another regardless of their religious backgrounds.
The construction of the mosque which sit on a half acre piece of land next to a Muslim cemetey in Pujut 5 will take about 15 months to complete.
Once completed, the mosque will not only be used as a place of worship but as an information centre for Islamic affairs.
The building will not only have a prayer hall but also an office, meeting room and Imam’s room.
The construction cost is estimated to be more than RM2.5 million.
Once completed, the mosque will known as Surau Pujut and Islamic Information Centre.
Also present during the ceremony were Lembaga Amanah Kebajikan Melayu Miri chairman Datuk Abdillah Abdul Rahim, Kabong assemblyman Mohd Chee Kadir and Piasau assemblyman Datuk Sebastian Ting. — DayakDaily