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Jakarta Post

Fear of the religious starts early

  • Prodita Sabarini

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, February 17 2010   /  01:20 pm

From the beginning: Children study in groups at an elementary school in Jakarta. Proselytizing in Indonesia’s public schools is on the rise, recent studies have shown. JP/J. AdigunaAlthough Indonesia has long been a melting pot of religious and ethnic groups, differences in faith still breed curiosity, fear and even animosity.

When Kelik Wicaksono opened the door of his house to two leaders of his neighborhood one Saturday morning, he didn’t expect to hear the kind of news the two men brought him.Kelik and his wife, both Christians, had been giving English lessons to children in their neighborhood in Pondok Cabe, South Jakarta, every Saturday afternoon.“It was a very sad moment. The men came to tell us that two local ulemas from another village had voiced their concerns about the content of our class,” Kelik said.“They were afraid because my faith is different from thei...