Faith confirmed by faith expressed
February 1, 2022
Indonesia is a nation consisting of tribes with cultural and religious diversity. In Java, where I live, the majority of the people are Muslim.
When my mother died at the age of 81 on Nov. 3, 2021, young women in the village made flower arrangements called “rencong” at the front of our house. Before the coffin was lifted up, they put the rencong on top of the crate.
While we were worshiping as Christians, Muslim sisters and brothers were present until the end. Then the village head released my mother with his Islamic prayers to Allah so that the burial went well.
The five daily prayer calls echoed by speaker in Arabic from the mosque. The whole village could hear it. The sign of prayer arrived. Muslims can pray at home or in the mosque.
My faith is confirmed because of the faith expressed by Muslim sisters and brothers. I am also allowed to express Christ’s kindness, love and salvation to us.
As is the tradition here, 40 days after my mother was called by God, we made a meal consisting of rice, vegetables, meat, crackers, cakes and fruit, which was distributed to neighbors. We wrote on a piece of paper a quote from God’s word from Romans 11:33–36. This paper was placed in the box.
“How great is the riches of God! How great is His wisdom and knowledge! Who can investigate His decisions? Who can understand the ways He works? God created everything. Everything comes from God and is for God. Praise be to God forever and ever. Amen.”
Together, Christian and Muslim neighbors delivered boxes of food to the neighbors who were present at my mother’s funeral. Sending food is sending prayers as the word of God, the word of Allah, as both Indonesian Muslim and Christian addresses to God.
Farsijana Adeney-Risakotta, Mission Co-Worker serving in Indonesia, World Mission, Presbyterian Mission Agency
Farsijana Adeney-Riskaotta is the founder and director of the House of Authentic Sense (HAS), a community-based cooperative comprised of village entrepreneurs from throughout the province of Yogyakarta. As a grassroots organization that practices principles of economic justice, the HAS Co-op is a place where community members help each other build businesses and save money. It brings together Muslims, Christians and people of diverse economic and educational backgrounds to collaborate in grassroots poverty elimination and advocacy for a just and peaceful society. To learn more about her ministry, visit presbyterianmission.org/ministries/missionconnections/drs-bernard-and-farsijana-adeney-risakotta.
Morning Psalms 12; 146
First Reading Genesis 21:1-21
Second Reading Hebrews 11:13-22
Gospel Reading John 6:41-51
Evening Psalms 36; 7
Today’s Focus: World Interfaith Harmony Week
Let us join in prayer for:
PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff
Donna Jackson, Editor, Presbyterians Today
Susan Jackson-Dowd, Executive Director, Presbyterian Women
Let us pray
God of all nations, we thank you for your divine wisdom and knowledge. For you created the heavens and the Earth and everything on it. We are grateful for our Muslim brothers and sisters who express their faith through acts of kindness and service to their neighbors. Through interfaith works, we can share your love to all peoples. Amen.