Phl Embassy, UMFM Host Iftar Reception

11 July 2015 – The Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur opened its doors last Thursday, 9 July for an interfaith celebration as it co-hosted an iftar (breaking of the fast) reception, in cooperation with the Union of Muslim Filipinos in Malaysia (UMFM), the Felo Muda Dakwah (FMD) and the Yayasan Dakwah Islamiah Malaysia (YADIM).

Yayasan Dakwah Islamiah Malaysia (YADIM) Deputy President Dr. Yusry Mohamad led the some 150 guests comprising of officers and members of the UMFM headed by its President, Amilizan Mazlan, leaders of the Federation of Filipino Associations in Malaysia, Muslim students and other guests.

"The presence here of peoples of many faiths is a manifestation of our reverence and deep love of God and an expression of our abiding appreciation for all the blessings that He has given us and our families. It is also a celebration of our unity and solidarity as individuals who care deeply for each other," Ambassador J. Eduardo Malaya said in his welcome remarks. He also thanked the co-hosts and Muslim friends for the opportunity to share the iftar experience.

For his part, YADIM Deputy President Dr. Yusry Mohamad expressed his appreciation to the Embassy for co-hosting the iftar, saying that he is "pleasantly surprised" that a foreign mission has opened its doors for Muslims to have iftar together.

"It is a wonderful idea which is full of positive spirit and very much in line with the state of this blessed day for Muslims. The Philippines has always been a great neighbor, and Islam places a special appreciation of neighbors," Dr. Yusry said.

There are some 4 million Muslim Filipinos. They live mostly in the Bangsamoro, but also among Christians and peoples of other faiths in almost all the major cities and towns of the Philippine archipelago. "They are part and parcel of the vibrant, multicultural nation that is the Philippines, and we are proud of our Muslim Filipinos," Ambassador Malaya added.

The event coincided with the 22nd day of the holy month of Ramadan, and entering the 23rd night, considered an auspicious event among Muslims as it is the Laylat al-Qadr or the special night of power. It is one of odd nights of the last 10 days of Ramadan, and Muslims believe that on this night, the blessings and mercy of Allah is abundant, sins are forgiven, and supplications are accepted.

YADIM was established by the Malaysian Government in 1974 as a foundation to promote positive dawah (preaching Islam) work in the country.

The Embassy and the UMFM also hosted an iftar reception last June 25. The July 9 event is the second iftar reception at the Embassy, to be followed by a Hari Raya reception in August. END