However, this new found space has also allowed groups that are not so civil to rear their ugly heads. The ugliest scene is the current Constitutional crisis in relation to the shariah law. In Malaysia, the federal constitution is the supreme law of the land; however, the constitution provides for shariah law to govern Muslims in religious matters, such as conversion and morality, and family law such as marriage, divorce, custody of children and the division of property. The nub of the current conflict is: Which law is supreme when one party in a dispute is a non-Muslim?
What is the role of the Church, both the hierarchy and the laity at times like this? Can the hierarchy provide a leadership role or should the laity take on these issues themselves as citizens of Malaysia?
Read the full article: Now is the time for Malaysia’s laity to lead (National Catholic Reporter, reproduced at Greg Lopez Blog)