Batak Church Attack

Sep 8th, 2007, in News, by

A Batak church in Tangerang, West Java is attacked.

On 2nd September a house used as a church in the Pondok Sukatani Permai housing estate, Sukatani, Tangerang (map), western Java was damaged in an attack by about 300 Muslims.

One report says about 200 people were in the house attending a regular Sunday service when a crowd of 300 surrounded the church and demanded that the service stop. Parishioners refused and thereafter the mob threw rocks and pieces of wood at the house, slightly injuring the pastor Jao Lolok Pasaribu, 50, and a churchgoer, P. Panjaitan, 36, both in the head. Police soon arrived. jawapos

Another report says about 50 people were in the house attending a regular Sunday service at the Batak "Protestant Church of the Christian Synod" when more than 300 Islamic extremists attacked and "totally destroyed the community's property". The pastor, called Jau Dolokseribu, and six parishioners were seriously wounded. asianews

Meanwhile on 7th September a leader of the Christian Partai Damai Sejahtera (PDS), Pastor Saut Hasibuan, asked the government to take a firmer stand against church burnings and vandalising, foster inter-faith dialogue, and revise the houses of worship law of 2006. detik


56 Comments on “Batak Church Attack”

  1. avatar Peter says:

    Sad. I think Indonesia was better off before intensely competitive Middle Eastern religions arrived (Christianity and Islam). Hopefully this is just a symptom of a weak government in an underdeveloped country, and Indonesia can grow economically and then be done with savagery like this.

  2. avatar Enigmatic says:

    Very sad indeed. Such actions breed only more resentment and hate among the Catholic and Christian community.

    SO TO THE PERPETRATORS OF THE ATTACK, DON’T START BLAMING THE CHRISTIANS OR CATHOLICS IF A MOSQUE GETS SACKED IN REVENGE BECAUSE OF YOUR STUPIDITY. YOU ASKED FOR IT.

    Do unto others what you want others to do unto you.

  3. avatar Sylvester says:

    It happened many times in west java. Probably because this province is relatively poorer than other part in java, so radical moslems easily regroup. Historically, moslem rebellion (DI/TII) also started in west java. I ever heard that this movement trying to get follower in school, campus such as ITB. Too bad that SBY is to weak, wish he as strong as Suharto. This radical islam should be eliminated at any cost.

    On the other hand, evangelist missions to convert moslem is a problem. Moslem should be left worshipping what they want to. Christian better concentrating on its own issue.

  4. avatar Odinius says:

    I love how the Indonesian government just sits on its ass whenever things start boiling. Then they boil over and the government still sits on its ass some more while large areas burn and people die. Maybe it sends BRIMOB in. Then it takes BRIMOB out as soon as armed gangs accuse it of “unfairness.” Happened in kalimantan (though that was ethnic), poso, ambon, etc. The government should be protecting ALL houses of worship when those houses of worship are still easily protectable.

  5. avatar Julita says:

    Sylvester: Moslem should be left worshipping what they want to. Christian better concentrating on its own issue.

    Sounds good to me, it should also go vice versa. Perhaps, then perhaps it could get a little bit better,

  6. avatar Dream says:

    For me, the world will be much much better off without Islam. It is a very scary religion. Their ALLAH basically ask HIS follower to protect and fight for HIM. Look at FPI, JII, FBR and others…….I wish Abraham only had one wife……….

  7. avatar Sylvester says:

    Agree Julita,
    Dream, maybe you need to invent a time machine, and….

  8. avatar Raden says:

    Dear fellow christian, the world will be peaceful without christian and islam religions. There is no use you condemn those muslim radicals in this forum, because they do not have access to internet and 99% of them are computer illiterate, they do not listen what you are voicing to them. While the muslim moderate who monitor this kind of forum are chicken muslims or consider as ‘muslim KTP’ who do not want to take any side. When the communication channels are tangled, that’s why the 2 religions followers never see eye to eye and end up fighting all the time.
    Now we missed the $oeharto’s style of ‘petrus’, hm … we want Soeharto back in power in Indonesia, oh yeah … it is better, damn true better ‘petrus’ than never, or it will be too late

  9. avatar Gohan says:

    Hhmmm…..
    Do they ever ask themselves, that there is a heaven ?
    If they do, then they have a plan not to be there.
    They have only one way ticket to HELL.

  10. avatar Falcon says:

    These are useless and failed individuals living with the wrong teaching claiming there is God but the fact is know nothing about God. The government must prosecute them as criminals and by not doing so it may lead to believe that there are people within condoning such leud act. Their faces and names must be published in the internet and what they have done. They have put shame to Indonesia.

  11. avatar Mansfield says:

    Dream said:

    Their ALLAH basically ask HIS follower to protect and fight for HIM

    Very good point! I wonder why they want to worship a god that have no power… how sad! I am greatly blessed that my GOD is an awesome God… He loves me, He saved me and He protect me.

  12. avatar Arema says:

    LOL, look at them, they are so fearful / jealous / whatever of Christians so they have to come in numbers and burn churches.

    They can do what they like, burn our churches, or even kill us, we are not afraid, because they can only kill our body and not our soul. We only fear God.

    And we will not retaliate either… what for? God did not ask us to do so, and by retaliating we are indirectly affirming what we are just as barbaric as them. We Christians should pray for them instead, so one day through our living example they may see the real God.

    And yeah, government really need to show who’s boss in the country… seriously.

  13. avatar Odinius says:

    Christians have done plenty of awful things to Muslims in history too. I used to live in ex-Yugoslavia. ‘Nuff said, really.

    Bottom line is, as soon as people think use religion politically, some will start to use it violently. I can’t think of any place in the world where that isn’t true. Second worst terrorist attack in USA history was by a Christian who thought he was doing God’s will. Just another God-freak. I doubt anyone’s God would want women and children to be blown up…it’s just not in ANY holy books!

    The other bottom line is that the government is pathetic if it doesn’t stop this crap.

  14. avatar roger says:

    These are useless and failed individuals living with the wrong teaching claiming there is God but the fact is know nothing about God. The government must prosecute them as criminals and by not doing so it may lead to believe that there are people within condoning such leud act. Their faces and names must be published in the internet and what they have done. They have put shame to Indonesia.

  15. avatar Julita says:

    Odinius: Christians have done plenty of awful things to Muslims in history too. I used to live in ex-Yugoslavia. ‘Nuff said, really.

    Jlta: Can you eloberate about the above statement, please. We have talk in this blog about Crusades, Holocaust, Inquisition and digging gold in Mexico. Yes, in Jugoslavia if you want to. I have also been living there. I would like to know your opinion, you could be right.

  16. avatar sonnie says:

    Why are these people fight for God whom they don’t know ?

    God punished the people of Aceh with tsunami disaster,…maybe He will punished West Java with tsunami again, or with Anak Krakatau eruption, people must learn God’s will, not their own silly interpretation.

    As far as I know, God don’t punish peaceful people. Where there are violence, it’s not God’s work, it is Devil’s work.

  17. avatar Odinius says:

    Julita…

    Well, the wars in yugoslavia weren’t about religion, but the ethnic groups are divided largely by religion. There were also lots of other things going on (orthodox serbs vs. catholic croats, orthodox serbs vs. muslim/orthodox/catholic albanians, catholic croats vs. bosnian muslims), and there were victims on all sides, but the worst perpetrators were orthodox christian serbs and the biggest victims were bosnian muslims. In the city of srebrenica, 8,000 muslim men were murdered over 3 days, more than 10,000 civilians were shot by snipers in Sarajevo over 3 years. A good friend of mine spent 3 months in an oil drum at a concentration camp.

    In Indonesia you could argue there are more Muslims twisting their religion to fit a hateful agenda than other religious groups, but in Bosnia, it was the opposite. I think the lesson here is that people abuse religion, ethnicity and nationalism for political gain. Every religion can be twisted by hateful people to justify their hate, while every religion can also justify someone reaching out to others in peace. It depends on the people and the situation.

    Take Christianity. I could argue, using quotes from the Bible, that it both allows me to own slaves and forbids me from owning them! The key here is reading the whole thing and putting it to work in the context of today’s societies, which obviously leads to the conclusion that the whole slave owning passages in the OT are a relic of their times.

    Oh, and where were you in ex-yugo? I was living in Zagreb, Zadar, Dubrovnik and Mostar.

  18. avatar Julita says:

    Odinius:

    Well, the wars in yugoslavia weren’t about religion, but the ethnic groups are divided largely by religion. There were also lots of other things going on (orthodox serbs vs. catholic croats, orthodox serbs vs. muslim/orthodox/catholic albanians, catholic croats vs. bosnian muslims), and there were victims on all sides, but the worst perpetrators were orthodox christian serbs and the biggest victims were bosnian muslims. In the city of srebrenica, 8,000 muslim men were murdered over 3 days, more than 10,000 civilians were shot by snipers in Sarajevo over 3 years. A good friend of mine spent 3 months in an oil drum at a concentration camp.

    Odinius:

    Christians have done plenty of awful things to Muslims in history too.

    Jlta: I told you, I have handled the others. You can find them in this blog. Handle all the fabrication. Now as I asked you about Jugoslavia, you change your tone a little bit, they were fighting each other, together not just the Christians killing the Moslems. If you read back in history about the Serbs you will find that they have gone through a lot under the Moslem ruling. They are the majority and were treated just like the Jews, gypsies whereas the Bosnian were working with/joining with the Nazi Germany. Yes, the Serbs were suffering and treated very cruelly. I will go into this and make it clear for others who read the blog.
    It is not that I like to go back talking about the past, I also know it is not my business, I just want to be clear and honest. I cannot leave things alone when it is not true or tell the full story. Yes, the Moslems were later on being killed and who were helping the Moslems, This could be interesting for all. I hope, I can come up with it. If we come to that.

  19. avatar Odinius says:

    Julita: As I said, the vast majority of crimes in the 1990s were by Serbs against Bosnian Muslims. This is something you can figure out from reading up on the subject, not just from personal experience as I have. Serbs were the biggest victims in WW2, but mostly at the hands of Catholic Croats, and much less often at the hands of Bosnian Muslims. Plus Cetnik bands in Bosnia were active murdering Muslim and Croat civilians too. Take the case of Foca. On one day, Ustase death squads killed 3,000 Serbs living in the village. The next day, Cetnik death squads murdered the 3,000 Muslims and Croats living there as well. So in two days, no one’s left. And almost none of those 6,000 people actually killed anyone. No wonder people joined the Communists, they were the only side that stood for all Yugoslavs of all ethnicities/religions under the banner “brotherhood and unity.”

    Everyone in the Balkans has a sad story to tell from some part of history. But in the 1990s the Serbs were clearly the worst perpetrators, and not just in Bosnia, in Croatia and Kosovo as well. The “suffering” argument doesn’t hold up because everyone was considered equal during the Communist years. Clearly Serbs were scared of life in nationalist Croatia, which was somewhat understandable, and democratic Bosnia, which was less understandable. But it did not justify a campaign of ethnic cleansing against both Catholic Croats and Bosnian Muslims. They also used their religious beliefs to reinforce their supposed justification for mass murder. Sad, but it’s human nature. And it doesn’t matter which religion it is, they can all fit a mass murder agenda in the wrong hands.

    Thankfully, they can all fit a mass peace agenda as well. This was demonstrated by the wide variety of countries that helped the Bosnians, the USA, UK, France, Sweden, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Iran, etc.

  20. avatar Julita says:

    Odinius: Take Christianity. I could argue, using quotes from the Bible, that it both allows me to own slaves and forbids me from owning them!

    Jlta: Please, Odinius clarify the above. It is better to put referencem so we don’t go back and forth. Christianity (followers of Jesus Christ) are allowed to have slaves?

    As about Jugoslavia it is not that simple, not as we thought to believe. Will quote with reference.

  21. avatar HeavenlySword says:

    The word is respect.
    The action is to respect people.
    The outcome is a peaceful society.

  22. avatar Odinius says:

    Julita: If you are a literalist christian (take the word of the bible as the literal word of God), then the Old Testament is the word of God, unless contradicted by the new covenant encapsulated in the New Testament, the passages on owning slaves still apply, for example:

    Leviticus 25:44-46 “Both thy bondmen, and thy bondmaids, which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them shall ye buy bondmen and bondmaids. Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall ye buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land: and they shall be your possession. And ye shall take them as an inheritance for your children after you, to inherit them for a possession; they shall be your bondmen for ever: but over your brethren the children of Israel, ye shall not rule one over another with rigour.”

    Deuteronomy 21:10-14 “When thou goest forth to war against thine enemies, and the Lord thy God hath delivered them into thine hands, and thou hast taken them captive, And seest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hast a desire unto her, that thou wouldest have her to thy wife; Then thou shalt bring her home to thine house; and she shall shave her head, and pare her nails; And she shall put the raiment of her captivity from off her, and shall remain in thine house, and bewail her father and her mother a full month: and after that thou shalt go in unto her, and be her husband, and she shall be thy wife. And it shall be, if thou have no delight in her, then thou shalt let her go whither she will; but thou shalt not sell her at all for money, thou shalt not make merchandise of her, because thou hast humbled her.”

    Deuteronomy 20:14 “But the women, and the little ones, and the cattle, and all that is in the city, even all the spoil thereof, shalt thou take unto thyself”

    As for Yugoslavia, no, I just don’t think it’s that complicated. A bunch of people fired up by nationalism started a civil war in which one side killed many more people and acted much more aggressively than the other sides. I think compared to, say, the civil war in Iraq right now, it’s quite easy to figure out. Sure there are blatant Serbian propaganda sources that tell an opposite story, but they are biased and about as credible as a KOMPAK vcd on Ambon (as firmly established by the UN and others).

    _______________

    My point with the quotes above, by the way, is not to argue Christianity requires its believers to own slaves, but to point out that its believers can use Christian theology to justify owning slaves.

    All religious texts have uncomfortable passages that we either follow blindly or learn to work around.

  23. avatar Julita says:

    Jlta: ‘Christianity’ is the teaching of Jesus Christ to His people in the New Testament. So if you refer slavery in Christianity then I need your quote from the New Testament.

    Odinius: by the way, is not to argue Christianity requires its believers to own slaves, but to point out that its believers can use Christian theology to justify owning slaves.

    Jlta: I don’t discuss assumptions in this blog, I need quotes and references. In the Catholic Church there is a leader who watch over his people, and condemns people who do not follow Jesus’ teaching. So, too bad, no justification will be coming from the Vicar of Christ.

  24. avatar Odinius says:

    Julita, but if you think Catholicism is just the New Testament then you must have missed out on a lot of Sunday School lessons. 🙂

    check it

    http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03267a.htm

    http://gbgm-umc.org/UMW/Bible/cathold.stm

    Whatever in the Old Testament is not contradicted by the New Testament is theoretically canonical. RCC has worked through a bunch of these, but many laws are still based on OT law. Take the Church’s stance on homosexuality. There is not a single passage in the New Testament relevant to that debate, but there are plenty in the Old Testament which is the source of the RCC’s stance.

    Therefore, unless a Pope forbids slavery, Christianity still theoretically allows you to keep slaves. In fact the RCC condemned slavery, but that’s not the same as forbidding it. And for non-Catholic Christians, who have no Pope to issue such proclamations, they could still, theoretically, determine that Christian theology allows them to own slaves.

    You might want to check up on the catholic church’s stance on the old testament. Last time i checked, it was considered canonical, unless explicitly contradicted by something in the new testament. There’s a reason bibles have two halves, after all 😉

  25. avatar Julita says:

    Simple, Odinius, Jesus Christ teach us to LOVE our neighbour as ourselves, there is no love in slavery. Slavery is forbidden by law.

  26. avatar Julita says:

    Odinius: Well, the wars in yugoslavia weren’t about religion, but the ethnic groups are divided largely by religion. There were also lots of other things going on (orthodox serbs vs. catholic croats, orthodox serbs vs. muslim/orthodox/catholic albanians, catholic croats vs. bosnian muslims), and there were victims on all sides,

    Jlta: So you change from “Christians have done plenty of awful things to Muslims in history too in ex-Yugoslavia.” Into weren’t about religion and there were victims on al sides. Serbs the worse because the Moslems got sympathy from the West.

    Idinius: but the worst perpetrators were orthodox christian serbs and the biggest victims were bosnian muslims. In the city of srebrenica, 8,000 muslim men were murdered over 3 days,more than 10,000 civilians were shot by snipers in Sarajevo over 3 years.

    If you like numbers, see the following:
    More than 60,000 Jews died, along with 27,000 Gypsies. The Serbs, the only anti-Nazi ethnic group in Yugoslavia, suffered the greatest losses—1.5 million.

  27. avatar Odinius says:

    Julita: okay, a few things. First of all, I don’t think you understand my point. I will bold words for you to make sure you don’t get confused again.

    Odinius: Well, the wars in yugoslavia weren’t about religion, but the ethnic groups are divided largely by religion. There were also lots of other things going on (orthodox serbs vs. catholic croats, orthodox serbs vs. muslim/orthodox/catholic albanians, catholic croats vs. bosnian muslims), and there were victims on all sides, but the worst perpetrators were orthodox christian serbs and the biggest victims were bosnian muslims. In the city of srebrenica, 8,000 muslim men were murdered over 3 days,more than 10,000 civilians were shot by snipers in Sarajevo over 3 years.

    Now do you see my point? There were many things going on, and innocent victims on all sides, but the worst perpetrators and the biggest victims were, respectively, Serbian Christians and Bosnian Muslims. That they saw themselves more in ethnic than religious terms doesn’t change the fact that this is also a story of people who are Christians killing a lot of people who are Muslims.

    Julita said:

    Serbs the worse because the Moslems got sympathy from the West.

    Serbs the worst what? Victims? Hard to be that when you’re the one doing most of the killing. NATO airstrikes in 1999 only killed 100 Serbian civilians. Talk to the people of Srebrenica, Zepa, Sarajevo, Bijeljina, Bosanski Samac, etc.

    Julita said:

    f you like numbers, see the following:
    More than 60,000 Jews died, along with 27,000 Gypsies. The Serbs, the only anti-Nazi ethnic group in Yugoslavia, suffered the greatest losses””1.5 million.

    What, numbers from a different war? And as horrible as WW2 was for Serbs, those numbers are from the Communist government trying to get $$ from Germany and were deliberately inflated. Check it:

    The number of victims in Yugoslavia during World War II has never been determined exactly. The official Yugoslav post-war estimate is 1,704,000. Majority of the victims were Serbs, targeted in a planned genocide in NDH, and who also constitued bulk of both partisan and royalist chetnik guerilla forces.
    However, the number of 1.7 million was later disputed as being delibaretly exaggerated for war reparations from Germany. Germany refused to pay reparations until names were provided of the victims, following which another investigation showed only half of the number. Subsequent data gathering in the 1980s by historians Vladimir Žerjavić (Croatian) and Bogoljub Kočović (Serb) showed that the actual number of dead was about 1 million. Both arrived to an almost equal figure during independant, unrelated studies.
    This was later confirmed by Professor Vladeta Vučković, Serbian author of the official 1946 Yugoslav document, who agreed with Žerjavić and Kočović estimations. Vučković has stated that he had calculated demographic loss to 1,700,000 (i.e. including those not born, deaths by starvation, diseases, etc.), and later that number was interpreted as actual number of victims and presented by Yugoslav delegation on peace conference later that year in Paris. [4]
    Other sources have confirmed their figures:
    “Details of the (Yugoslav) 1948 census were kept secret but, in negotiations with Germany, it became apparent that the real figure of the dead was about one million. An American study in 1954 calculated 1,067,000 [5]. Following Tito’s death in 1980, the 1948 census results became available for comparison with those of 1931. Allowances had to be made for the birth rates of the different communities and for emigration. Research was pioneered by Professor Kočović, a Serb living in the West, whose findings were published in January 1985. He assessed the number of dead as 1,014,000. Later that year a Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts Conference heard that the figure was 1,100,000.[4] In 1989 Vladimir Zerjavic, a Croatian living in Zagreb published, with the aid of the Zagreb Jewish community, his calculation of 1,027,000. … So a figure of about one million for all Yugoslavia is now generally accepted.” [6]
    Žerjavić’s and Kočović’s calculations of war losses in Yugoslavia during WW2 were accepted by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, together with other typically higher estimates:
    “Due to differing views and lack of documentation, estimates for the number of Serbian victims in Croatia range widely, from 25,000 to more than one million. The estimated number of Serbs killed in Jasenovac ranges from 25,000 to 700,000. The most reliable figures place the number of Serbs killed by the UstaÅ¡a between 330,000 and 390,000, with 45,000 to 52,000 Serbs murdered in Jasenovac.” [7]
    A list compiling individual names of victims has reached only 600,000.[4]
    Number of victims by ethnicity is:

    Nationality 1946 Kočović[4] Žerjavić[4] By name[4]
    Albanians 4,000 – – –
    Bosnian 100,000 86,000 103,000 32,300
    Croatian 110,000 207,000 192,000 83,257
    Germans – 26,000 28,000 –
    Hungarian 3,000 – – –
    Jews 60,000 60,000 57,000 45,000
    Macedonians 35,000 – – –
    Montenegrin 50,000 50,000 20,000 16,276
    Slovacs 1,000 – – –
    Slovenians 60,000 32,000 42,000 42,027
    Serbs 1,280,000 487,000 530,000 346,740
    Turks 686 – – –
    Others – 66,000 55,000 31,723
    TOTAL 1,703,686 1,014,000 1,027,000 597,323

    from

    That list gives four estimates: the first is the Communist one exposed as a scam to get money in reparations from Germany. The second is from Serbian Professor Kocovic, and the third from Croatian (Catholic) Professor Zerjavic, who have dedicated their lives to the truth about WW2 victims. The fourth are the confirmed deaths by name.

    But here’s the bottom line: in WW2, Serbs were the biggest victims, mostly at the hands of aetheist Nazis and Catholic Croats. In the 1990s, Bosnian Muslims were the biggest victims, mostly at the hands of Orthodox Serbs. The point here is just to illustrate that in history people who follow Christianity have done awful things to people who follow Islam, not just the other way around.

  28. avatar Julita says:

    Odinius: I understand you clearly, but I read/study from all sides. After all the reading, I see the Serbs from a different angle. They have gone through a lot of beatings in their very own land. I am not as expressive as you, it is better for me not to. I have my opinion. You will find some of things I said in the following web.
    http://www.srpska-mreza.com/GUIDE/contents.html

  29. avatar Odinius says:

    Julita: I hope I didn’t come off as disrespectful. That was not my intention. But you should beware the blatant propaganda that infects everything in ex-Yugoslavia. For every Serbian propaganda site about WW2, there’s a Croatian one that says they did nothing bad to anyone and all the Serbs were treated nicely and maybe only 30,000 died during WW2. And both sides are bull****. As the numbers I posted above should show, every nationality in Yugoslavia suffered horribly in WW2, but Serbs suffered the worst. I strongly believe this experience is what led them to be the most aggressive during the 1990s.

    The point I’m trying to make here is that people use culture as a means to an end. If you want territory, justify it on the grounds of “history,” “race” or “religion.” Or justify it on the grounds of “they killed us there, so we are justified killing them here.”

    Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists and atheists all have this in common. Everyone has this in common. Sad, but true.

    The sites and sources that claim that one’s own group didn’t commit certain crimes neutral sources agree they did tend to do so because people never want to believe that one’s own group can be “the bad guys,” even in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

  30. avatar Andrew says:

    Odinius said:

    The point here is just to illustrate that in history people who follow Christianity have done awful things to people who follow Islam, not just the other way around.

    Odinius is right on the money; in fact, not only to those who follow Islam. Protestantism exists today partly for the same reason. This [persecution] is a historical fact that should be taken as is without affecting their faith in God, yet a lot of Catholics are still in complete denial.

Comment on “Batak Church Attack”.

RSS
RSS feed
Email

Copyright Indonesia Matters 2006-18
Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Contact