The Vigil – my sequel

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I came with two friends. Good to see some familiar faces … and as time progressed quickly for the hour relationships deepened and other new conversations emerged as well. Of course, these are more of the side benefits.

This CandleLight Vigil in Front of KL High Court was not meant just for us to hang out with friends old and new but to reflect our concern that awareness, attention and action must be for the Protection of rights of all citizens equally . I suspect many here tonight would resonate with what is conveyed here in Keep the word on justice, fairness” and say yes to “As a Malaysian, I would like to see my government and the courts act in ways which promote justice, equality and fairness for all.”

There’s is no denying the very personal dimension of this story that keeps us anchored to some very human realities especially in the midst of tragedy.

And yet, this personal story has brought to our attention what affects our common journey together as a Malaysians. ALL of us and not just some of us.

For me … it has helped me dig deeper into what it means to be a Malaysian. Words like rights and responsibilities are floating around in my head very consciously since the first visit. And as one who follows Christ … I also intentionally connect my faith with the location where I live my faith in and the history that I am part of here and now.

My heart is open for God to challenge my “comfort zone” and “status quo”. My mind is actively asking questions and seeking answers with the abundant resources available through the Scriptures, Christian wisdom past and present and interaction with insights from concerned partners & neighbours. My hand and body is ready to do what is right rather than using the energies in mere complaining … in fact, the interplay of silence and conversations (while standing holding a candle) has done me much good. Keeps things on the level of praxis before I’m off on an abstract and distant tangen of mere words.

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Does holding a candle with a group of friends and strangers (who become new friends) drawn together with a concern make a difference?

According to Mr. R whom I got to know today – He REALLY believes the vigil has raised awareness and created a sense of urgency (and perhaps more). I found my conversations with him enlightening.

I remember an older man that I saw during my first participation and discovered he’s been here every evening since day one. Whether rain or no rain. I can see this is Important to him.

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“God – our creator, redeemer and life-giver … thank you for Malaysia and the precious independence that we have as a nation from our colonial past. Thank you that we live in a relatively peaceful country and different people of race, religion and political persuasions co-exist together in harmony. Thank you for all the good we’ve experienced thus far together.

Lord in your mercy (hear our prayer)

And yet, there are times when our human systems are inadequate. Often, cracks are present in how we relate to each other. There are times when righteousness and justice and even genuine compassion especially for the weak and poor are neglected.

We admit that many a times we are apathetic to many issues concerning the good for all. We have failed in many ways in fulfilling our responsibilites as humans created in your image. Loving Lord, we seek your forgiveness for the mess we make or the mess we ignore. We ask for empowerment to rise up and do what is right and in the process allow your Spirit to transform our ugliness and turn it into beauty that blesses all around us.

Lord in your mercy (hear our prayer)

Help us recognize the other person who is different from us. Help us respect the differences and appreciate each others uniqueness. Help us STOP and relate to each other face to face which perhaps would allow for heart to heart encounters. help us have clear minds to understand what is most important and what requires change and adjustment. Help us create structures that will make it possible for all possible intercessions to be heard. Help us to either find space or create space where life on earth may flourish …

Lord in your mercy (hear our prayer).

may your kingdom come here on earth as it is in heaven …

May your kingdom come here where we are …

Give us a foretaste of the best that’s coming from the future.

Amen.

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