Malaysian officials block rebuilding of church
September 23, 2010
Local government officials in predominantly Muslim Malaysia have ordered a Protestant community to stop building a brick church in a village where 600 were baptized in 2001. The previous bamboo church in the village had been destroyed by flooding.
“The Christian community enjoys freedom of religion guaranteed by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Malaysia, Article 11, but sometimes this freedom is limited by the restrictive interpretation given by government officials and the perception of the majority religious community in Malaysia, the Muslims,” said Tan Kong Beng, executive secretary of the Malaysian Christian Federation.
3% of the nation’s 27.7 million people are Catholic, according to Vatican statistics. 60% are Muslim, 19% are Buddhist, 6% are Hindu, and 6% are Protestant.