Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) expressed hope that the Ascension of Jesus Christ Day would inspire Indonesian Christians and Catholics about the importance of the values of love for all humans.

The president made the remarks in his Ascension Day greetings through his official social media account, observed here on Thursday.

"I hope the holy occasion will inspire us about the values of love to all," he stated.

Jokowi also expressed hope the values of love would motivate Indonesian Christians to be more persevering in preserving national unity and harmony among the nation's diversity.

In concert with the president, Religious Affairs Minister Yaqut Cholil Qoumas also extended his congratulations to all Christians and Catholics in Indonesia on the commemoration of the Ascension of Jesus Christ.

"There is always value and meaning in every religious commemoration," Minister Qoumas noted in his statement here on Thursday.

The minister expressed hope that Christians in Indonesia would understand the deepest meaning of this commemoration.

He also remarked that Jesus' teachings had a spirit of service and universal friendship.

This year, Indonesian Christians and Catholics commemorated the occasion as "Ascension of Jesus Christ Day" for the first time since it became a national holiday, as promulgated by Presidential Decision No. 8 of 2024 on National Holiday.

Until 2023, the government recognized the occasion as "Ascension of Isa Al-Masih Day" with the Arabic translation of Jesus Christ's name. The government decided to change the nomenclature to accommodate requests from Indonesian Christians and Catholic communities.

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Translator: Rangga Pandu AJ, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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