Monday, February 18, 2008
Christian Federation of Malaysia: As our nation prepares for the coming elections, we call on all Christians to be conscious of your responsibility as good citizens and to exercise your right to vote. Do familiarize yourselves with biblical principles on issues central to you and our nation, information on candidates and programmes of the various political parties. Pray for discernment and foresight.
In order to cast votes responsibly, we invite you to prayerfully CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING:
A. What the bible says about our primary concerns
Based on the opinion poll commissioned by The Star newspaper, the cost of living, social issues, crime rates and illegal immigrants are central to the concerns of the survey participants. As Christians, we are also concerned about issues which God is concerned about.
In the Bible we learn that God is righteous and just, merciful and loving. Whilst he has given us freedom of choice, he wills a good life for all human beings in a society that is spiritually and morally grounded.
God desires peace and goodwill among all people. In and through his love, we are called to cultivate neighborliness, and promote harmony built on mutual respect.
The threat to God's creation is apparent today. God has called humans to act as responsible stewards. The protection of the resources of the earth is for the benefit of all God's creation.
B. Political Parties: Their Policies And Delivery of Promises
Assess the political parties on the basis of their policies and promises, their stand on various issues related to justice and fair play, citizens' rights, national unity, economic development, protection of the environment and welfare of those who are sick, disabled and poor. Is there integrity, honesty and efficiency? Have the
parties delivered on their promises? Do their political views and policies reflect God's standard and Christian values?
Examine carefully the ability of candidates, their standard of accountability, integrity, values and leadership skills. Pay attention to their past performance and for their stand on issues related to constitutional rights, civil liberties and the freedom of religion. Have they been consistently accessible and available?
MAKE EVERY EFFORT TO PRAY for candidates in your constituency, the issues herein highlighted and the outcome of the General Elections. Set aside time to pray daily. Organize and participate in local church prayer programmes. We owe to God, ourselves, our future generations and our country to exercise responsibly our privilege to pray and our democratic right to vote. We aspire with all Malaysians to live in a nation, where all citizens may enjoy freedom, love, justice, peace,
stability and economic prosperity.
The Christian Federation of Malaysia joins all other Malaysians in expressing the wish that the coming ELECTIONS WILL BE FAIR and there will be no attempt by politicians to publicly misrepresent or miscast any particular issue, or subject any community to unfair and adverse publicity for the purpose of political gain.
MAY GOD'S SPIRIT GUIDE EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU to make wise decisions in casting your votes. May the results of the elections be fair and representative of the will of the people of Malaysia, trusting that God's purpose will always prevail above the affairs of human beings.
Grace and peace to all. Thank you.
Bishop Paul Tan Chee Ing, SJ President
Bishop Datuk John Lee Vice President
Rev. Dr. Thomas Philips Vice President
Rev. Eu Hong Seng Vice President