News from Home, World and the Vatican

News selected by Catholic Lawyers Society Kuala Lumpur (CLS) for Catholics in Malaysia concerned about social justice and peace.

Includes CLS Internal News | CLS in the News | CLS Press Statements

CCBM Statement: Court Of Appeal Decision In The Matter Of R.Subashini-Saravanan

We are deeply disappointed and feel aggrieved by the recent majority decision of the Court of Appeal that the non-Muslim wife had to seek recourse through the Syariah Courts.

This is a form of religious oppression and an affront to human dignity.

As the Federal Constitution is the supreme law of the country, a person of one religion should not be made subject to laws of and governance by another religion. Read more »

MCCBCHST Press Statement: Court of Appeal Decision On Subashini v Saravanan

In the wake of the majority of the Court of Appeal in the case of Saravanan A/L Thangathony v. Subashini A/P Rajasingam [Rayuan Sivil No.W-02-955-2006] we, the Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism, are greatly disappointed the once again, the non–converting non-Muslim wife of a convert to Islam has failed to get relief from our Civil Courts.

We would respectfully remind members of the Judiciary that the Federal Court, Court of Appeal and the High Courts in Malaysia and in Sabah and Sarawak are all civil courts and judges of those courts take an oath of office to uphold the Federal Constitution, which guarantees all persons, including non-Muslims, the fundamental liberty of professing and practising their faiths in peace and harmony. Read more »

CFM Press Statement: Court of Appeal Decision on Subaishi v Saravanan Case

The Christian Federation of Malaysia views with great concern the recent decision of the Court of Appeal in the case of Subashini v. Saravanan, where she, although a non-Muslim, was urged to submit to the jurisdiction of the Syariah courts to seek recourse from the break-up of her family, when her husband converted to Islam.

It is troubling to note, and indeed of great concern to all Malaysians, that what is clearly stated in the Federal Constitution, that the Syariah courts shall have jurisdiction only over persons professing the religion of Islam [Schedule 9, List 11(1)], is now being extended, by the court decision, to include non-Muslims. Read more »

Archbishop Murphy Appointed To Pontifical Council For Inter-Religious Dialogue

Pope Benedict XVI has appointed new members to the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue. The Vatican press office made the announcement on March 8.

Archbishop Murphy Pakiam together with 18 other members has been appointed to the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue (PCID).

The PCID was instituted on Pentecost Sunday, 1964, by Pope Paul VI. It is the central office of the Catholic Church for the promotion of interreligious dialogue in accordance with the spirit of the Second Vatican Council, in particular the declaration Nostra Aetate. Read more »

Conversion Case: Non-Muslim Spouse's Appeal Dismissed

A Court of Appeal today dismissed a non-Muslim spouse's appeal to prevent her husband from dissolving their marriage and from converting their children to Islam without her permission, saying her recourse was through the Syariah Appeal Court.

In a majority decision, Justices Datuk Suriyadi Halim Omar and Datuk Hasan Lah dismissed R.Subshini's appeal and allowed her husband, T. Saravanan's appeal.

Third panel member Justice Datuk Gopal Sri Ram dissented. Read more »

CLS Announcement: Committee Members for 2007/08 Elected

Catholic Lawyers Society Kuala Lumpur is pleased to announce that the following were elected as office-bearers of the Committee 2007/08 at the 13th Annual General Meeting held on Mar 2007. Read more »

Catholic Lawyers Society Endorses Article 11 Coalition Open Letter

The Catholic Lawyers' Society of Kuala Lumpur has recently endorsed an Article 11 coalition open letter to the Government of Malaysia to uphold the supremacy of our Federal Constitution.

Article 11 coalition is fully committed to upholding those fundamental rights for all Malaysians regardless of religion, race, descent, place of birth or gender. Read more »

Commentary: Red Mass Celebration 2007

The Catholic Lawyers' Society of Kuala Lumpur celebrated the Red Mass last Saturday, 20.1.2007 at St John's Cathedral, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

This event marks the beginning of the Society's calendar of events.

The Red Mass, a colourful religious ceremony of the Catholic Church, was celebrated by Rt. Rev. Anthony Lee Kok Hin, the Bishop of Miri and Most Reverend Murphy Nicholas Xavier Pakiam, the Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur together with Catholic members of the Judiciary, Attorney General Chambers, Malaysian Bar, law students and other embassy officials. Read more »

CBC Pastoral Letter: Legal Implications Of Conversion To Islam

Dear Sisters and Brothers in the Lord, If you convert to Islam, there are important changes in your legal status and what you can or cannot do.

Your conversion to Islam will be registered with the Religious Department and the National Registration Department, both of which are computerised so access to this information is available throughout the country. Read more »

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