Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Holey C: Can the Federation have an Official Diplomatic Relationship with Another Religion?

Catholic Church plugs for non-Muslim affairs ministry
By Debra Chong July 26, 2011

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak (right) with Pope Benedict in Rome last week. — Reuters pic
KUALA LUMPUR, July 26 — The Roman Catholic Church here will lobby for a non-Islamic affairs ministry now that Malaysia has formalised ties with the Vatican, says Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur Tan Sri Murphy Pakiam.
The head of the national Catholic Bishops’ Conference has also resurrected the set-up of an interreligious council, among a slew of measures he believes will help peacefully end the current ethnic, cultural and religious conflict in Malaysia.

“I had communicated to the Holy Father that we hope to see the establishment of an Inter-Religious Council [IRC] that would include key leaders and representatives from all religious groups; the establishment of a Ministry and the appointment of a full Minister to look into non-Islamic affairs,” said Pakiam in an formal message to all Catholics today, after his return from accompanying the Malaysian government delegation to visit Pope Benedict XVI in Rome last week.

The idea for a non-Islamic affairs ministry was first raised by the Anglican bishop of Kuching, Datuk Bolly Lapok in March this year following the Home Ministry’s seizure of 35,000 Malay bibles — or Al-Kitab as they are locally called — imported from Indonesia and meant for the Bumiputera Christian market here.

His call, aimed at pressuring the federal government to set up a special portfolio to take care of non-Muslim affairs, appears to have gained traction with the establishment of diplomatic relations with the head of the Catholic Church.

The Catholic archbishop said he had kept the pope informed of the “hopes and aspirations of the local church” through Archbishop Leopoldo Girelli who is at the moment still an apostolic delegate to Malaysia.

Pakiam added that the Church also hopes Putrajaya allows Catholic seminaries to resume regional priest training here; promote Christian-Catholic education and teacher training courses; and set up bilateral links between Islamic institutions in Malaysia and the Pontifical Institute for Arabic and Islamic Studies among other steps.

“I believe that these points, if they had not already been raised in the discussions between the Holy Father and the Prime Minister, will be raised in the future through diplomatic channels,” he said.

Pakiam said diplomatic relations was beneficial for Catholics as it gave them a “greater voice in Malaysian society” in order to prophetically proclaim the values which it defends and safeguards.

Penang is the first state in the country to set up an executive council portfolio to handle non-Muslim religious issues in early February this year, in conjunction with the United Nations’ Interfaith Harmony Week.

The idea for the IRC was first mooted in the 1980s but was spiked early on following objections from Muslim groups such as the Islamic Development Department (Jakim).

The Najib administration formed its special committee to promote harmony and understanding among religious adherents in April last year but the interfaith panel appears to have stymied following the death of its coordinator, Datuk Ilani Isahak on February 24.

Her replacement has yet to be announced. Source here

Slowly but surely the Church is coming on stronger with more valid "demands" in order for their rights as a minority religion in the country is "safeguarded"..

Anyway folks....monkey been monitoring this Vatican visit output......

Monkey was also in Vatican a few months back...nice place long queues....

But worth the wait especially if you wanna check out the Sistine Chapel....

Now back to the "Malaysia has formalised ties with the Vatican" statement by Pakiam

Lets look at the official statement from Wisma Putra

Malaysia Establishes Diplomatic Relation with the Holy See
(Vatican City)

Malaysia and the Holy See in the Vatican have agreed to establish formal diplomatic relations, following the footsteps of other Muslim-majority nations such as Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Jordan, Turkey, Egypt, Libya, the Arab League and majority members of the Organisation of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

Prime Minister, Dato' Sri Najib Tun Razak today concluded his working visit to the Holy See after paying a courtesy call on Pope Benedict XVI and Secretary of State (equivalent to Premier) Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone at the Apostolic Palace in Castel Gandolfo, Rome which is the summer residence of the Pope.

The Prime Minister was accompanied by his wife Datin Sri Rosmah Mansor, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in-charge of National Unity Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon, Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities Tan Sri Bernard Giluk Dompok who is also a Catholic, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of Islamic Affairs Dato’ Seri Jamil Khir Baharom, Chairman of the National Fatwa Council Tan Sri Prof. Abdul Shukor Husin and Catholic Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur Tan Sri Murphy Pakiam.

In the meeting with the Pope, Najib put forth his concept for a Global Movement of Moderates to counter extremism of all forms. He first made this call when delivering his speech to the United Nations General Assembly in September 2010. Najib also said as a multi-ethnic and multi-religious country, Malaysia has drawn on the values of moderation to ensure continued harmony, stability and prosperity.

Najib added that Malaysia was keen to share its experience with the world, and that is why Malaysia is committed to forging links and alliances with like minded countries to promote world peace and harmony. He said this is the main reason why Malaysia established diplomatic relations with the Holy See.

"The world is at a crossroads, the forces of irrationality and discord are threatening our long-cherish and hard-gained stability, and prosperity. What is worst is that certain quarters use religion to justify acts of terrorism. Malaysia and the Holy See are committed to surmount such negative forces by employing the powers of reason and moderation," said Najib.

Najib added, “The Holy See recognises Malaysia’s commitment to promote moderation as a global doctrine. Our effort in managing our diversity despite various hurdles and challenges is a cogent reminder that diverse societies can succeed. However, we must remain vigilant and confront pernicious forces that threaten to unravel this harmony. We must also do more by adopting an inclusive approach to administration and governance, and ensuring the Malaysian sun shines on every Malaysian.”

Najib also raised the possibility of forging closer links with the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue headed by Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran and the Pontifical Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies. He said the Institute of Islamic Understanding (IKIM), Institute of Advanced Islamic Studies and the Department of National Unity and Integration (JPNIN) will spearhead this initiative from Malaysia.


Let's check out some basic facts about Holy See and Vatican in the eyes of the International Law...

When considering the close relation between the Holy See and Vatican City State on the one hand and the traditional criteria of international law on the other hand, it is not that easy to determine the nature of the Holy See and Vatican City State. In international legal doctrine, several opinions are defended.
A. The General Ideas: An Overview
Much has been published on the international position of the Holy See, the Roman-Catholic Church and Vatican City State.In the older doctrine, one can find the idea that the Holy See and the Roman-Catholic Church do not have legal personality, although the political and social role of the Holy See is recognized, as is the possibility for having diplomatic relations. The Italian lawyer G. Arangio Ruiz writes in 1925 that the old doctrine, according to which only states have legal personality in international law, is obsolete. However, this does not mean that the Holy See therefore has immediate legal personality in international law. Another Italian lawyer, A.C. Jemolo, does not accept this theory and claims that this question can be solved rather easily. If states and the Holy See wish for their relations to be subject to international law, it is to be accepted that the Holy See is a subject of international law.The discussion becomes even more complex when the so-called Roman Question is solved: by creating Vatican City State, a new element is brought into the discussion.

What is now the added value of Vatican CityState, and what is its relation to the Holy See? The French canon lawyer Roland Minnerath, formerly in diplomatic service of the Holy See, before being appointed professor at the University of Strasbourg and currently archbishop of Dijon, after a careful analysis, can make a distinction between several theories. According to the dualistic theory, a second subject of international law is created by the Lateran Treaty in 1929, separate from the already existing subject of international law (the Holy See): Vatican City State. This is however only one theory. According to the monistic theory, there is only one subject of international law, although it is not clear what this subject is. There are three possible candidates. In the first hypothesis, the Holy See is the only subject of international law.Vatican City State is only a territory with extra-territorial rights, but not a separate subject of international law. The second hypothesis is exactly the opposite: because of the Lateran Treaty, the Holy See is no longer a subject of international law -- only Vatican City State is a subject of international law. The Holy See however can use the advantages of Vatican City State. A third hypothesis is somewhat related to the first one, at least with regard to the result: Vatican City State is not a subject, but an object of international law, because all its competences are taken over by the Holy See.

The key issue is thus the point of reference: in order to have a subject of international law, we need, at least according to the traditional doctrine, a state. A definition of a state can be found in the Montevideo Convention of 1933: a state has a permanent population, a defined territory, a government, and the capacity to enter into relations with the other states. In many manuals on international law, these will be the criteria used to define a state. Consequently, the authors have difficulties defining the status of the Holy See and Vatican City State. When dealing with subjects of international law and international personality, some authors will agree that the status of the Holy See as an international person was accepted by its partners and that Vatican City State, although closely linked with the Holy See, can be considered as a state.Others will categorize both entities as entities sui generis,comparable to the Sovereign Order of Jerusalem and Malta, and yet others will catalogue them under the subjectheading “Other entities – Selected anomalies,” together with the already mentioned Sovereign Order of Malta.

It is not uncommon any more to defend the position that the Holy See is a subject of international law and has international legal personality, not because the Pope is sovereign of Vatican City State, but because first and foremost he is the head of the Roman Catholic Church.

We could conclude thus far that both the Holy See and Vatican City State are subjects of international law and have international legal personality. The link between both is the pope, and the connecting factor is the Lateran Treaty. The whole situation is sometimes summarized as follows: Vatican City State was created as a mini-state to safeguard the absolute freedom and independence of the Holy See.
Globally countries in world will have their diplomatic relationship with the Holy See, this has created some problems especially with regards to Countries that requires Separation of the Church and the State in its constitution, take for instance the USA, when it finally had diplomatic relationship with the Holy See

Am. United for Separation of Church and State v.Ronald W. Reagan, 607 F. Supp. 747 (E.D. Penn. 1985). The case was before the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania after the United States and the Holy See decided by common agreement to establish diplomatic relations between them at the level of embassy on the part of the United States of America, and Nunciature on the part of the Holy See, as of 10 January 1984. Plaintiffs claimed that such relations violated the First Amendment because “the arrangement

(a) establishes a formal relationship with a church,
 (b) amounts to a preference of one church over all other churches,
(c) provides special benefits to one church to the detriment of all others,
(d) produces excessive entanglement of the government in church affairs and vice-versa, and
(e) creates religious divisiveness.

Plaintiffs’ Complaint and Plaintiffs’ First Amendment Complaint were dismissed. 
According to the U.S. government, although the Holy See is part of the Catholic Church, it
is also the sovereign authority of Vatican City, a state with international character, and the U.S. diplomatic relations with the Holy See are with it as sovereign of Vatican City and not with it as head of the Catholic Church. One can wonder whether this interpretation, in itself very practical to face allegations of violation of the First Amendment, could be accepted by experts in international law, let alone by the Holy See.
This situation is even more interesting at the United Nations Level...
Catholics for a Free Choice is still campaigning to change the status of the Holy See at the United Nations. They claim that the Holy See represents a religion and not a country and should therefore not be a Non-Member State Maintaining Permanent Observer Mission at U.N. Headquarters. According to this campaign, which started in 1999, the status of the Holy See at the United Nations should be reduced to the status of a non-governmental organization (hereinafter “NGO”). The campaign had quite an amount of world wide press coverage. Supporters of the campaign wrote public opinions in newspapers, sometimes asking for a revision of the status of the Vatican and some governments were urged to break their diplomatic relations between their country and the Vatican.Yet this is problematic, since a country does not have diplomatic relations with the Vatican, but with the Holy See. Go here

Ok let us now look at the Canon Law 365 to know what exactly is the Role of the Ambassador (Nuncio)


Can. 362 The Roman Pontiff has the innate and independent right to appoint, send, transfer, and recall his own legates either to particular churches in various nations or regions or to states and public authorities. The norms of international law are to be observed in what pertains to the mission and recall of legates appointed to states.

Can. 363 §1. To the legates of the Roman Pontiff is entrusted the office of representing the Roman Pontiff in a stable manner to particular churches or also to the states and public authorities to which they are sent.

§2. Those who are designated as delegates or observers in a pontifical mission at international councils or at conferences and meetings also represent the Apostolic See.

Can. 364 The principal function of a pontifical legate is daily to make stronger and more effective the bonds of unity which exist between the Apostolic See and particular churches. Therefore, it pertains to the pontifical legate for his own jurisdiction:

1/ to send information to the Apostolic See concerning the conditions of particular churches and everything that touches the life of the Church and the good of souls;

2/ to assist bishops by action and counsel while leaving intact the exercise of their legitimate power;

3/ to foster close relations with the conference of bishops by offering it assistance in every way;

4/ regarding the nomination of bishops, to transmit or propose to the Apostolic See the names of candidates and to instruct the informational process concerning those to be promoted, according to the norms given by the Apostolic See;

5/ to strive to promote matters which pertain to the peace, progress, and cooperative effort of peoples;

6/ to collaborate with bishops so that suitable relations are fostered between the Catholic Church and other Churches or ecclesial communities, and even non-Christian religions;

7/ in associated action with bishops, to protect those things which pertain to the mission of the Church and the Apostolic See before the leaders of the state;

8/ in addition, to exercise the faculties and to fulfill other mandates which the Apostolic See entrusts to him.

Can. 365 §1. It is also the special function of a pontifical legate who at the same time acts as a legate to states according to the norms of international law:

1/ to promote and foster relations between the Apostolic See and the authorities of the state;

2/ to deal with questions which pertain to relations between Church and state and in a special way to deal with the drafting and implementation of concordats and other agreements of this type.

§2. In conducting the affairs mentioned in §1, a pontifical legate, as circumstances suggest, is not to neglect to seek the opinion and counsel of the bishops of the ecclesiastical jurisdiction and is to inform them of the course of affairs.

Can. 366 In view of the particular character of the function of a legate:

1/ the seat of a pontifical legation is exempt from the power of governance of the local ordinary unless it is a question of celebrating marriages;

2/ after he has notified in advance the local ordinaries insofar as possible, a pontifical legate is permitted to perform liturgical celebrations in all churches of his legation, even in pontificals.

Can. 367 The function of a pontifical legate does not cease when the Apostolic See becomes vacant unless the pontifical letter establishes otherwise; it does cease, however, when the mandate has been fulfilled, when the legate has been notified of recall, or when the Roman Pontiff accepts the legate’s resignation. Source here

First I wonder whether our "diplomatic" relationship is with the Sovereign of the Vatican State or with the Head of the Roman Catholic Church (refer the American court case interpretation).

What would other Christian denomination feels if it is with the Head of the Roman Catholic Church?

Is a religion a Country?

How would the current Reporting Structure of the Roman Catholic Church be affected with the Diplomatic Relationship and the appointment of the Pontifical Legate to Malaysia, what we know from Canon 365 is that the Pontifical legate deals with questions which pertain to relations between Church and state.

Who is the Church now?

Will the Local Catholic Church issues, for example the Legal Court Case between Herald which is owned by Murphy Pakiam on behalf of the Council of Bishops of Peninsula Malaysia becomes the issue of the Church?

Monkey shall wait and see...

FDI maybe.......Foreign Direct Intervention on your doorsteps complete with "Holy Robes" in an official capacity

Since they are coming perhaps the petition to Change the Name of GOD to Allah in all Bibles in the world should be reignited
Pope Benedict XVI
Holy See, Vatican
Rome, Italy
Your Holiness Pope,
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful[1]
(i) We, the Christian peoples of Malaysia as undersigned below, would like to obtain a holy decree from you ascertaining that the name of the Deity mentioned in the bible is indeed Allah.
(ii) For more than 20 centuries this Deity has not been mentioned by name and we now understand that His holy name is Allah, the same one that has been used in the Quran of the Muslims.
(iii) In the event that we obtain this decree from you, we would also like to request that each and every copy of the bible in this world at present and the ones printed in the future shall bear the name Allah too.
(iv) What would your holy order be regarding the teachings of Allah as promulgated in the Quran seeing how, as mentioned in (i) above, this God is no different from ours. In particular what would your holiness imply as regards to dogmatic issues in the new testaments especially the ones formulated by Saul of Tarsus (who have never met Jesus in person) as opposed to ones whom this Allah directly teaches in the Quran.
We would more than appreciate it if you can respond favourably to this and have some indication dates on when can the world-wide bibles be re-printed with this name Allah in it, so that we ourslves may enjoy this name to be mentioned in our own bible here in Malaysia.
Thank You 
Or maybe a special petition to change Tuhan Yesus Kristus into Isa Al Masih?

Baru Melayu sikit...takkan Bapak ikut Arab anak ikut Orang putih? Go here for the discourse plus the Political Christians positioning for PRU13, Joceline Tan was a few months late with her Article Minority with A Major Role , lain kali naik Spaceship macam gua tak tertinggal keretapi......nak tumpang bagitau..gua ada spare seat..

Ok now to the PRESSURE to have a Minister for Non Islamic Affairs....

How can we legally create a Non Islamic Affairs Minister when other Religion besides Islam is not even mentioned in our Constitution?

Kalau ada pun what is the Scope? Semua Religion of the World?

eg: Kalu gua Sembah Api boleh complain kat the Minister.... Jabatan Bomba kasi padam Tuhan gua?

Mental doe...

Take Indonesia for instance, in their constitution it is very clear that 5 religion is recognised, refer below their organisation chart

if we wanna talk about creating a Ministry I sincerely think that A Ministry in charge of Bumiputra Initiatives should be created, there has been a huge gap after the disbandment of Kementrian Pembangunan Usahawan by Najib ....(sape punye idea tu ? let me give him a nice pelempang sebijik)

lepas tu buat all these toothless entity like Teraju....

For what la brader?

Don't you know how to Govern at all?

A massive agenda that affects the Well Being of the Majority of the Nation, you wanna split into 8 Ministries with No Ministrial Level Consolidation?

Bole cita ka?

Technical Notes 
The Position of the Holy See and Vatican City State in International Relations (must read ! download here )

PS: Bro Freddie.....gua tunggu berjingut so gua post dulu
Minds are like parachutes; they work best when open. -Lord Thomas Dewer