Religious Liberty

The Kuching Declaration 1989

        Author: CFM





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.


LEADERS OF CHURCHES represented in the CHRISTIAN FEDERATION OF MALAYSIA (CFM) met in consultation at Kuching, Sarawak from the 6th to the 8th of September, 1989 to consider the restriction sought to be imposed by law in various States on the use by non-Muslims of certain words and expressions in Bahasa Malaysia and the increasing difficulties encountered with the relevant authorities in the publication, distribution and importation of the Alkitab and other Christian literature particularly in Bahasa Malaysia and Bahasa Indonesia.


Having deliberated at length and depth on these matters and their effects on Christians in Malaysia, THE LEADERS OF CHURCHES present at THE KUCHING CONSULTATION wish to declare and assure all Christians in Malaysia that:


1.  the restriction sought to be imposed are contrary to the Federal Constitution and objectionable in law as are the various administrative actions and measures taken to deny access to Christian literature in Bahasa Malaysia and Bahasa Indonesia;


2.      we have a right and are entitled to use the national language, Bahasa Malaysia, in its entirety as with any other language without any distinction on the grounds of differing faith; and


3.      all efforts will be taken to inform the relevant authorities and the people who have influence on public policy of our stand and to seek ways to have the restrictions revoked and to pursue a fairer and just implementation of administrative measures in the case of religious materials.


WE AFFIRM our stand to continue our use of Bahasa Malaysia in its entirety;


RESTATE our solidarity as Christians in facing together whatever may arise on account of our stand and conviction;


AND URGE all Churches to be vigilant and unceasing in prayers for wisdom on the part of all concerned to amicably resolve this serious issue and for the maintenance of a united, harmonious and peaceful nation where justice, human rights and human dignity are upheld at all times.




Issued by Leaders of Churches and Executive Committee of CFM

At The Kuching Consultation, Sept 1989

Revised and released by the decision of the Executive Committee of Christian Federation

of Malaysia On 30th January 2008.

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