Indonesian Catholic Foundation forms future leaders in ethics

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JAKARTA, Indonesia, May 25, 2013–A Catholic foundation that looks at the country’s youth, to contribute to the formation of a new generation that can participate more actively in the political life of Indonesia, the most populous Muslim nation in the world. This is the work, among many others, promoted by Bhimiksara Foundation (Bf), which on May 4 celebrated with a solemn liturgy – presided over by the Archbishop of Jakarta – the 25th anniversary of its founding. The non-profit organization, which aims to be at the service of the Church and State, marked a quarter century of life under the slogan: “Education is God’s Calling.”

The mass for the 25th anniversary of the foundation was celebrated by Msgr. Ignatius Suharyo, archbishop of the capital, together with Msgr. FX Hadisumarta and the professor and theologian Fr. BS Mardiaatmadja. Making it a particularly significant event, the Indonesian Bishops’ Conference recognition that the Bf has done much to “form young and qualified Catholics” with the potential to “obtain leadership roles and become examples of leadership that is greatly needed in the country” .

In addition to training courses, seminars and cutting-edge curricula, the Foundation has followed the Church’s mission “to proclaim the Word of God” through the preparation of students and professionals. Bishop Suharyo confirms that “their presence is positive testimony of the presence of the Church” bringing “light and hope to society.”

Over the past two years Bhimiksara Foundation has held a series of conferences and seminars on leadership and good governance, the young participants, future leaders in the public or private enterprises, were taught the ethical values at the foundations of work, with a particular reference to the fight against corruption, one of the endemic problems of the country.

In Indonesia, the most populous Muslim nation in the world, Catholics are a small minority of about seven million people, equivalent to about 3% of the total population. In the Archdiocese of Jakarta, the faithful reach 3.6% of the population. The constitution provides for freedom of religion, but the community is the victim of incidents of violence and abuse, especially in areas where the extremist vision of Islam is more entrenched, such as in Aceh. They are an active part in society and contribute to the development of the nation or the work of aid during emergencies, as was the case during the devastating flood last January. (AsiaNews)

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