In what could be a rare show of solidarity between two faiths, members of the Faith Community Baptist Church (FCBC) and the LoveSingapore network of churches have announced that they will be joining the Wear White campaign, initiated by members of the Muslim community, to protest against the Pink Dot event to be held at Hong Lim Park next Saturday, 28 June.
The Wear White campaign was initiated by Ustaz Noor Deros, 28, a religious leader, in a bid to ask Muslims to “return to their natural disposition”. The campaign calls for Muslims to wear white when attending the first prayer on 28 June. The Muslim month of Ramadan starts on Sunday, 29 June.
The campaign organisers have earlier spoken out strongly against Pink Dot, saying the Pink Dot organisers have deliberately chosen the date as a mark of disrespect to Islam.
The Pink Dot event, organised in support of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in Singapore, has been held on the fourth Saturday of June since it began in 2009.
Lawrence Khong, senior pastor of FCBC, posted the following in his Facebook page:
“I’m so happy that Singapore’s Muslim community is making a vocal and visual stand for morality and Family. I fully support the ‘wear white’ campaign. FCBC, together with the LoveSingapore network of churches, will follow suit on the weekend of 28 and 29 June, island-wide. I look forward to celebrating the Family with the Muslim community and I am pleased to partner with them in championing virtue and purity for the good of our nation!”
The organisers of FamFest, previously called Red Dot Family Movement, had their application to host the event at the Padang on 28 June, the same day as Pink Dot, rejected by the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), “as it deemed the event unsuitable for the Padang”. The event has since been cancelled.
The Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS) has earlier advised Muslims not to be confrontational towards the LGBT community and the lifestyle they choose to adopt. While MUIS has indicated that it does not approve of the “pervasiveness” of the LGBT lifestyle, it also cautioned against mosques being “involved in the crossfire” between the Pink Dot and Wear White initiatives.
Poet and playwright Alfian Sa’at had earlier taken issue with the Wear White campaign, citing its openly combative stance against Pink Dot. He noted on his Facebook page that the organisers have since taken down the “allegation that Pink Dot had intentionally decided to hold the event on the first day of Ramadan, ‘to underline their disdain for Islam’.”