Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Priest reveals proof Christians used ‘Allah’ before Merdeka

Priest reveals proof Christians
used ‘Allah’ before Merdeka

Source/Author: The Malaysian Insider / Jennifer Gomez (7 January 2014)

A prayer book in Malay, published in 1905, containing the word ‘Allah’.

A century-old Catholic prayer book is the latest proof that Christians in the Malay peninsula not only prayed in Malay more than 100 years ago, but also communicated with each other and the church in the language, says a priest at the centre of a new “Allah” row in Malaysia.

Catholic weekly Herald editor Father Lawrence Andrew said the 1905 publication was a Malay language prayer book and not Indonesian.

"From the spelling of the words, you would see it is old Malay. And you can find the modern translation of the old Malay used in the scripture in the Alkitab," he told The Malaysian Insider.

His church and other Catholic churches in Selangor managed to avoid disruption to their Sunday services when planned protests by certain Muslim non-governmental organisations were called off over their use of the word “Allah” in the Bahasa Malaysia services.

The title page of the 'Kabaktian Sahari-harian' (Daily Prayer) sent to Father Lawrence Andrew.
Andrew said the prayer book quoted the First Letter of Peter, one of the verses in old Malay read:

“Rendahkanlah diri mu dibawah tangan berkuasa Allah itu, sopaia dia angkatkanlah kamu di waktu katemuannha."

In the Akitab, the verse read: “Oleh itu, rendahkanlah diri kamu ke bawah tangan Allah yang berkuasa, supaya Dia meninggikan kamu pada masa yang ditetapkan-Nya.”

The priest reiterated it was particularly important for Malay-speaking Christians to be able to pray in Malay, especially for those from Sabah and Sarawak who were living in the peninsula.

"There seems to be a general misconception that the use of the word is a new trend in the Christian faith, but that is not true. It has been used for hundreds of years.

"And this prayer book is just one example that Catholics in Malaya were praying in Malay before the British came and English was widely used, alongside Malay by the East Malaysians," Andrew said.

He said the Malay prayer book was mailed to him by the daughter of its owner not long ago.

In a hand-written note that came with the prayer book titled "Kabaktian Sahari-harian" (Daily Prayer), the sender wrote: "This book belonged to Mary De Silva who was a boarder in the convent at St Anne's church, Bukit Mertajam, around the year 1919, where this book was used. Now the book belongs to her daughter Lily De Silva who lives with her son in Penang".

Putrajaya won its case last October against the Herald at the Court of Appeal, which overturned a 2009 High Court ruling that Herald has the constitutional right to use the word “Allah”.

The church is appealing against the decision at the Federal Court.

Despite the court process, tensions have risen in the past few weeks over the church's use of the word “Allah” in its Bahasa Malaysia service, leading to the prospect of demonstrations outside churches.

Father Lawrence Andrew (second from left) and Archbishop Emeritus Tan Sri Murphy Pakiam (third from left) at their meeting with Selangor police chief Datuk Mohd Shukri Dahlan yesterday.
It is understood more than 80 police reports have been lodged against Andrew over his remark that the word “Allah” would continue to be used in Catholic churches in Selangor.

His comments came following a statement from the new director of the Selangor Islamic Affairs Department (Jais), Ahmad Zaharin Mohd Saad, who had said that the state religious authorities would write to churches in Selangor asking them to comply with the Selangor Non-Islamic Religions (Control of Propagation among Muslims) Enactment 1988.

Andrew’s comments resulted in several Muslim groups and Selangor Umno threatening to protest in front of churches in the state on Sunday but the protests were called off at the last minute.

But not before a group of protesters burned an effigy of Andrew on Friday.

Still, the priest in his Sunday sermon, called on his congregation not to fear and to remain faithful to God.

Andrew is to meet Selangor executive councillor in charge of religion, Sallehen Mukhyi, and later he will have his statement recorded by Selangor police.

Yesterday, he accompanied Archbishop Emeritus Tan Sri Murphy Pakiam for a meeting with the Selangor police chief Datuk Mohd Shukri Dahlan over the recent religious conflict involving the Catholic church and several Muslim groups. Today, Andrew will have his statement recorded.


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通告 Notification

人民之友 对我国第14届大选意见书
(华 巫 英)3种语文已先后贴出

作为坚守“独立自主”和“与民同在”的立场的一个民间组织,人民之友在今年9月24日对即将来临的第14届全国大选投票,发表了一篇以华文书写的“意见书”,题为:投票支持"反对国家伊斯兰化的候选人": 反对巫统霸权统治!莫让马哈迪帮派"复辟"!

这篇意见书的英文译稿(标题是:Vote for “candidates who are against State Islamisation”: Oppose UMNO hegemonic rule! Prevent “the return to power of Mahathir’s faction”!)已于10月22日张贴在本部落格。马来文译稿(标题是:Undilah "calon yang membantah pengislaman negara": Menentang pemerintahan hegemoni UMNO! Mencegah puak Mahathir kembali kepada kuasa!)也已接着在11月13日在此贴出。



Pandangan Sahabat Rakyat terhadap PRU14 telah diterbitkan dalam tiga bahasa (Melayu, Cina dan Inggeris)

Sebagai sebuah pertubuhan masyarakat yang berpendirian teguh tentang prinsip "bebas dan berautonomi" dan “sentiasa berdampingan dengan rakyat jelata”, Sahabat Rakyat telah menerbitkan kenyataan tentang pandangan kami terhadap Pilihan Raya Umum ke-14 yang bertajuk "Undilah calon yang menentang Pengislaman Negera: Menentang pemerintahan hegemoni UMNO! Jangan benarkan puak Mahathir kembali kepada kuasa! " (投票支持"反对国家伊斯兰化的候选人": 反对巫统霸权统治!莫让马哈迪帮派"复辟"!)dalam Bahasa Cina pada 24hb September 2017.

Penterjemahan Bahasa Inggeris kenyataan tersebut yang bertajuk Vote for “candidates who are against State Islamisation”: Oppose UMNO hegemonic rule! Prevent “the return to power of Mahathir’s faction”! telah diterbitkan dalam blog kita pada 22hb Oktober 2017 manakala penterjemahan Bahasa Melayu telah diterbitkan pada 13hb November 2017.

Selain daripada itu, Sahabat Rakyat juga akan menyebarkan kenyataan ini seluas mungkin kepada pertubuhan dan individu semua bangsa, strata, profesyen dan agama seluruh Negara melalui email, wechat, whatsApp dan pelbagai saluran lain. Kami amat mengalu-alukan pertubuhan dan individu yang berpendirian dan pandangan sama dengan kami untuk turut menyebarkan kenyataan ini kepada lebih ramai orang!

Kami berharap pendirian dan pandangan kami berkenaan pilihan raya kali ini yang dinyatakan dalam kenyataan tersebut dapat disebarkan dengan tepat dan meluas untuk diuji dalam kalangan rakyat semua bangsa semua strata sosial melalui penglibatan mereka dalam amalan pelbagai parti politik dalam pertempuran pilihan raya umum kali ini mahupun amalan masa depan.

The Chinese, English and Malay renditions of Sahabat Rakyat’s opinions about GE14 have been published consecutively

As an NGO which upholds “independent and autonomous” position and "always be with the people" principle, on 24 September 2017, Sahabat Rakyat had released a Chinese-written statement of views with regard to the voting in the upcoming 14th General Election, entitled “Vote for candidates who are against State Islamisation: Oppose UMNO hegemonic rule! Prevent the return to power of Mahathir’s faction!” (投票支持"反对国家伊斯兰化的候选人": 反对巫统霸权统治!莫让马哈迪帮派"复辟"!)

The English rendition of this statement entitled "Vote for “candidates who are against State Islamisation”: Oppose UMNO hegemonic rule! Prevent “the return to power of Mahathir’s faction”!" and the Malay rendition entitled "Undilah "calon yang membantah pengislaman negara": Menentang pemerintahan hegemoni UMNO! Mencegah puak Mahathir kembali kepada kuasa!" had been released on 22 October and 13 November respectively.

Apart from that, Sahabat Rakyat will also make every effort to disseminate this statement as widely as possible to organizations and individuals of all ethnic groups, religions and all walks of life throughout the country via email, WeChat, WhatsApp and other channels. We welcome organizations and individuals with the same position and views to spread this statement to more people!

We hope that our position and views pertaining to the upcoming General Election expressed in the statement will be accurately and widely disseminated and also examined by the popular masses of various ethnicity and social strata through their involvement in the struggle of the 14th General Election carried out by various political parties and their practices in all fields in future.

Malaysia Time (GMT+8)