reports on interfaith engagement in Indonesia

Muslim Wawan Gunawan and Christian Yunita Tan visit Basel in 2019. They work in the Jakatarub network for interfaith peacebuilding. Photo: Miriam Glass/Mission 21

The university lecturer Wawan Gunawan has already prevented churches from being closed in Indonesia on several occasions. Wawan Gunawan is himself a Muslim and is a committed advocate for religious minorities, such as Christians and members of the Ahmadiya movement.

For Wawan Gunawan, peaceful interreligious coexistence in Indonesia is important. He also cultivates friendships across religious boundaries, for example in the interreligious network Jakatarub, which he co-founded and which is supported by Mission 21.

Interreligious dialogue as peacebuilding

In Stefan Degen's article, which also appears in print in the Kirchenbote St. Gallen, other impressive examples are given of people who are working for coexistence across religious boundaries in the world's most populous Muslim country.

They invoke a principle that is also guaranteed by the Indonesian constitution: freedom of religion. "Unity in diversity" is the state motto. Traditionally, the majority of Indonesians practice a moderate Islam. Radical groups, however, are increasingly trying to divide society. It is therefore all the more important that more and more interreligiously committed people are taking public action to promote a peaceful Indonesia. Mission 21 supports this work, for example through the Jakatarub network and the Pasundan Church in the megacity of Bandung.

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