The Governor of Jakarta lauded the contribution of the Church to society.
Catholic Churches across Indonesia provide invaluable services to society through education, healthcare, and social developments programs, said Anies Baswedan.
“The government appreciates the church's social role in the country, such as the Maria Kusuma Karmel Catholic Church which carried out a series of social activities including holding vaccination drives and providing social assistance to the needy,” he said.
The Governor of Jakarta visited Maria Kusuma Karmel Catholic Church, Kembangan, West Jakarta, on April 17.
His visit to the church was to greet Christians on Easter Sunday.
On the occasion, Catholics requested Baswedan to address their aspirations regarding church permits.
In Indonesia, government permits are needed to establish places of worship for all religions.
The governor emphasized that the establishment of churches in Jakarta can be carried out by adhering to the principle of equality.
Speaking to the parishioners, Baswedan stressed that the Jakarta provincial government has the principle to bring equality and justice, including the rights of worship of its citizens.
“Jakarta is a gathering place for all people in Indonesia. Therefore, we must ensure that all have equal opportunities,” he added.
“Everything (including church permits) is done after thorough and in-depth investigations and based on the documents submitted to the government and following laws,” said Baswedan. “We do this by adhering to the principle of equality everywhere. This applies not only to churches but all places of worship and other permits.”
“We live side by side, togetherness occurs in the environment. Please take care of it. It is important that a house of worship not only provides tranquility but also is an opportunity to get closer to God. A place of worship is a place of serenity and safety for the surrounding environment,” he said.
The Maria Kusuma Karmel Church is the 44th parish in the Archdiocese of Jakarta (KAJ), with a total of 12,800 Catholics.
Radio Veritas Asia (RVA), a media platform of the Catholic Church, aims to share Christ. RVA started in 1969 as a continental Catholic radio station to serve Asian countries in their respective local language, thus earning the tag “the Voice of Asian Christianity.” Responding to the emerging context, RVA embraced media platforms to connect with the global Asian audience via its 21 language websites and various social media platforms.