Selangor’s Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah said there was nothing wrong with Muslims attending a wedding or a wake held at a church.
However, Muslims must not take part in the rituals or practices at either temples or churches, he said.
He said, similarly, Christians would not join in prayers or rituals held at Taoist temples.
Sultan Sharafuddin said his late grandfather, Sultan Alam Shah, attended the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. This was held at the Westminster Abbey church in London.
“He had just returned from Mecca then. He consulted the state mufti if it was acceptable for him to attend the coronation.
“The mufti said there was nothing wrong with it if he did not take part in any ritual such as prayers,” he was quoted as saying.
Sultan Sharafuddin also revealed that a mufti had informed his father that he could wear the medals and insignia on his uniform, including those that resembled a cross.
The Selangor ruler’s stance was similar to that of the Johor sultan who last week said Muslims in the state could visit houses of worship of other faiths as long as they did not participate in the rituals or prayers.
However, the call by the Selangor Islamic Religious Council (Mais) to restrict visits by Muslims to temples, churches and gurdwaras to learn about other faiths “was correct and clear”, said Sultan Sharafuddin.
He said Mais was merely protecting the faith of Muslims by highlighting programmes in Selangor “to persuade Muslims to be inclined towards or to be interested in other religions” as this was an offence.
Mais had issued the statement in the wake of the controversy sparked by a programme under the youth and sports ministry to foster greater understanding among youths of other faiths. This programme has now been cancelled. – FMT