The Malaysian Insight: Call to ban evangelicalism an overreaction, says Upko

Call to ban evangelicalism an overreaction, says Upko
The “Borneo Revival Healing Rally” event in Sandakan on June 14. Upko says religious harmony in Sabah is still intact and any religious event could be held as it was in line with the Federal Constitution guarantee on freedom of religion. – The Malaysian Insight pic, June 18, 2017.
CENTRE for Human Rights Research and Advocacy (Centhra) CEO Azril Mohd Amin was overreacting with his proposal to outlaw evangelicalism, the United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation said today.

The Sabah party’s religious and racial harmony bureau co-chairmen Suip Saniman and Sualim Gopog said outlawing evangelicalism would undermine harmony and religious tolerance among Malaysians.

They said Azril was taking his cue from the banning of the Jerusalem Jubilee evangelical event in Malacca few weeks ago when he wrote the article which was published by Utusan Malaysia last week.

“Azril’s suggestion to outlaw Christian evangelicalism will not help the Barisan Nasional (BN) government.

“Perhaps the prime minister needs to step in to minimise whatever damage done by the CEO of Centhra,” said Sualim.

Religious harmony in Sabah is still intact and any religious event could be held as it was in line with the Federal Constitution guarantee on freedom of religion, said Suip.

He said it was a “sad day” for Malaysia when individuals like Azril still existed despite the spirit of 1Malaysia being inculcated among a plural Malaysian society.

Azril had said that evangelicalism threatens religous harmony as it “exhibited new religious tendencies towards positivism, unfettered freedom and a tendency to uncontrolled openness.

Evangelism in the Christian context broadly refers to spreading its gospel.

Evangelicalism is a movement born from the Protestant school with a specific core belief that is said to be different from mainstream Protestanism, one of them being the belief in “personal conversion”.

The call for an anti-evangelical law followed claims by conservative Muslim figures that some Christian groups were conspiring to “Christianise” Muslim-majority Malaysia, which bans propagation of any faith to Muslims. – June 18, 2017.

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