Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Istiqlal Mosque hosted an interfaith ceremony that was attended by representatives of various religious faiths in Indonesia to commemorate the 77th anniversary of Indonesia's independence on Wednesday.

The independence ceremony at the mosque's Al-Fattah Plaza was the first to be organized with an emphasis on interfaith relations, according to Istiqlal Mosque’s Grand Imam Nasaruddin Umar.

"This ceremony is special and is a historical moment as the ceremony to commemorate Indonesia's independence was for the first time attended by figures of religious faiths (and organized) in a place of worship," Umar said, according to a statement received here.

The representatives of religious faiths who attended the ceremony included Indonesia Hindu Dharma Society (PHDI) chairperson Wisunu Bawa Tenaya, Bishops' Conference of Indonesia (KWI) chairperson Ignatius Suharyo, and Indonesian Buddhists Representatives (Walubi) chairperson Siti Hartati Murdaya.

Moreover, Supreme Council for the Confucian Religion in Indonesia (Matakin) Chairperson Budi Santoso Tanuwibobo and Communion of Churches in Indonesia chairperson Gomat Gultom also attended the ceremony at the mosque.

In his remarks, Umar said that the interfaith independence commemoration ceremony could serve as a medium to enhance religious faiths' commitment to Indonesia.

"The essence of our religious faiths is still needed by the framework of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia. Indonesian values must also remain our guide to develop our religious teachings," he remarked.

For the ceremony, the Madrasah Istiqlal Jakarta supplied the flag-raising troop and the marching band for the national anthem.

Meanwhile, Umar led the recitation of Pancasila tenets, while the Istiqlal Mosque Management Body's (BPMI's) social and Ummah empowerment department head Asep Saepudin read the independence proclamation text, and head of the BPMI's education and training department, Faried Saenong, read the preamble to the 1945 Constitution at the ceremony.

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Translator: Asep Firmansyah, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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