Micah Midnight: Forum, Apocalypse, 1989, the Perak Raintree

The Micah Mandate will be co-organizing it’s first forum with Friends in Conversation and RoH Malaysia this coming Saturday, March 7, 2009, 2.30pm at Bangsar Lutheran Church.  In short, we are more than a website, that’s only the tip of the iceberg! This convergence and cooperation is a good thing

The noun ‘trial’ (Greek peirasmos) and the participle verb ‘tempted’ (Greek peirazo) in 1:13 share a common root. Previously we have been told that trials are a blessing. Now we are told that trials may bring temptation with them. Christian parents, whose only daughter has been raped, may be tempted to say “we will never forgive that man” and so they live the rest of their life in a state of unforgiveness and bitterness. The young man, whose parents have just been imprisoned because of their faith in Jesus Christ, and who has been dismissed from his job because he is a Christian is tempted to deny Christ and return to his former religion. These are real life situations but we do well to remember that: “no temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13).

Barred from their normal home by the FRU, the State Assembly conducted its session under the raintree. As I walked towards it, I was recognised by some drivers/bodyguards and given access finding myself suddenly no more than thirteen feet from the Menteri Besar (Chief Minister) and just five feet from the Speaker of the Assembly surrounded by full-suited state assemblymen. The business was conducted in an orderly, solemn manner and even the large crowd forming the outer circle quickly caught the mood and followed the proceedings in a reverent and respectful manner. For an outdoor environment, this was no small achievement. Elsewhere this proceeding may have been much maligned and pronounced illegal but being there I saw nothing that was in any way discrediting to the august assembly.

In fact, this was very much a people’s parliament. As the rakyat, common people had access to the State Assembly proceedings. They came from all walks of life, dressed properly but without having to don formal (and expensive) clothes. As many who wanted to observe the proceedings had access to it. Despite the absence of the usual forbidding uniformed security personnel, neither myself nor the countless others sensed a security threat. The agenda was to the point and understandable to those present.

If this was not exemplary of what democracy should be, what is? It was people-friendly, accessible, pro-rakyat, responsible, responsive, orderly but welcoming. A kind of going home to the kampung or home-town feeling. Before my eyes, a grassroot state assembly session was taking place.

Whilst there has not been a shortage of expressions of outrage and disgust, there is an urgent need for a more considered response that brings together a wider range of perspectives. As we approach International Women’s Day, join us for a conversation on these issues, which brings together perspectives of faith, gender studies, human rights and morality.

HIDDEN CAMERAS:
The Politics of Gender and Public Morality

Date & Time
Saturday, 7th March 2009
2.30 pm – 4.30 pm

Venue
Bangsar Lutheran Church
23, Jalan Abdullah
off Jalan Bangsar
Kuala Lumpur
(location map)

Download the PDF flyer here.

Let us remember – No Cross, No Crown

How did BN lose power in five minutes?

The positioning in this passage is contrary to the thought pattern of many Christians. The English-speaking churches in Malaysia are largely made up of members from the upper-middle classes. In our thinking the Chief Executive Officer holds a higher position and the postman a lower position. Even in church circles the pastor is held in greater esteem by the congregation than the church cleaner. Thus in Christian families many parents are always urging their children to study hard and follow their examples of climbing the social ladder.

CHRISTIANS IN MALAYSIA, together with the rest of the nation, are COMMITTED to Bahasa Malaysia as our national language and have used and continue to use Bahasa Malaysia in the life and witness of our Churches and Christian organizations.

Engagement – individually and collectively – is at the crux of a functioning democracy. Engagement begins with awareness and interest, blossoms through conversation and action, and matures with wisdom, understanding, and compassion for others. It can be a powerful force for positive change. It can also be destructive, if we are not careful.

We need maturity in the way we engage.

I am not an alarmist nor a pessimist. But the bad news is that the fast unfolding global financial crisis is so bad that it’s going to be apocalyptic.

Mention the word Apocalypse and we see doomsday coming. The word itself comes from Revelation, the last book in the Bible which in Greek, “apokalupsis,” means a glimpse of things to come.

The crisis may have started in the U.S but it has spread round the world. Already 20 million are out of work in China. And it’s coming nearer and nearer to us.

About Sivin Kit

man of one wife, father of four kids
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