» 12/27/2010, 00.00
West Java: Catholics celebrate Christmas Mass in a parking lot
An order by Bogor Regency prohibits members of the Saint John the Baptist Catholic Church from engaging in any public activity, ostensibly because they lack a proper place of worship. Muslim extremist groups increasingly threaten Indonesia’s Christians.
Indonesian Christians turn to administrative courts to obtain permits to build churches
Court rulings help Christian communities build their churches. Administrative courts tend to overturn decisions by municipal authorities taken to appease Muslim extremists who want to stop the construction of churches and other Christian places of worship. Extremist mobs stop Good Friday services in West Java.
Muslim threats against Yasmin Church in West Java continue
The faithful still have to pray by the roadside after their church was shut down. Radical Muslim groups continue to disrupt their activities and issue threats against them. The mayor of Bogor still refuses to accept a ruling by the country’s Supreme Court upholding the Church’s right to build its own places of worship.
West Java: Islamic authorities shut down church, Christians celebrate in the street
Bogor mayor closes the church of an important local Christian group, banning all its activities. The faithful protest and take their faith to the streets. Rights groups issue official protest.
After 40 years a Catholic Church in West Java is forced to close
Christ’s Peace Church has been active since 1968 now local Muslims are contesting the use of the buildings for religious purposes. With the backing of police and local politicians the extremists have won their battle: the parish does not have the legal permit and therefore must close down. For years the church had sought to obtain the permit without success, gaining only a staunch refusal from the government.
Small theocratic fiefdoms emerging in Bogor and Padang
The leader of the “heretical” sect al-Qiyadah surrenders to police. Debate inflames opinions in Indonesia. Some Indonesians fear the growing influence exercised by Muslim religious leaders on public life and warn against small “theocratic fiefdoms.” Police actions against the sect have in fact been carried out without input from proper civilian and judicial authorities.
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