Muslims across Indonesia joined Christians in celebrating Holy Week, providing a welcome boost to those trying to preserve and promote religious tolerance amid growing fears of extremism.
Many photos and videos showing Muslims at churches were posted on social media over Easter.
At St. Francis Xavier Cathedral Parish in Ambon, in Maluku province, dozens of young Muslims performed dances during a procession on Good Friday attended by Bishop Petrus Canisius Mandagi of Amboina and other religious leaders.
Bishop Mandagi said the presence of Muslims showed a determination among people to maintain a brotherhood among different religious communities.
“This is an example of where religion becomes a unifying tool and this religious celebration becomes a bridge to strengthening relations,” he told ucanews.com on Easter Sunday.
Saidin Ernes, from the Ambon branch of the Ulema Council — Indonesia’s top Muslim clerical body — said they wanted to “show that there is a strong fraternal relationship between religious believers in Maluku,” especially among Muslims and Christians.
A photo showing Muslim youths at the Christ the Redeemer Catholic Church in Sentani, Papua was also circulated online.
They held banners that read Happy Easter for Christians. “Let us both maintain the integrity of our fellow religious believers.”
In Central Java, students from State Institute of Islamic Religion in Salatiga sang at the Java Christian Church during Easter celebrations on April 1.
Meanwhile, in Jakarta, Governor Anies Baswedan attended Easter celebrations with thousands of members of the Indonesia Bethel Church.
FULL ARTICLE FROM UCA NEWS