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Friday, 29 March 2013

Indonesian Town Government Destroys Church amid Muslim Cheers

In Indonesia, Muslims protest the construction of a church.

The Batak Protestant Church, in the Bekasi subdistrict of Jakarta on the Indonesian Island of Java, "had been meeting in a residential house every Sunday for the past 13 years. When the congregation swelled to about 600 members, Pastor Adven Leonard Nababan applied early this year for a building permit. The church obtained signatures of 60 non-Christian neighbors, as required by law."

See if we can have a law requiring 60 non-Muslim neighbours' signatures to allow a mosque to be built in Western, Christian countries. Good luck with that!

Certainly the church had met all the permit rules, however, well knowing that local governments in Indonesia can be slow to approve them, Pastor Nababan in January 2013 "ordered construction to proceed — a not uncommon practice among churches in a country where applications often languish".

But the local authority said that the church lacked the permit and "dispatched a backhoe to the Batak Protestant Church on March 21 to knock down church walls that had been under construction".

Cheers went up from the Muslim crowd as a backhoe tore down the barely finished walls of the church.

"The pile of rubble that remained was only the latest setback to Christians trying to retain a toehold in the world’s most populous Muslim country."

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