The sacrificial story leads back to Abraham and Ishmael. Abraham was instructed in a vision to sacrifice his son Ishmael for the sake of God. In consulting with a willing Ishmael, both proceeded to make the sacrifice to obey the command of their Lord. In this selfless act of devotion they gained the Mercy of God who summoned a lamb in place of Ishmael.
It is this act of devotion that takes place during Eid’ul Adha. Whilst festivities and celebrations have their place, the main emphasis of the Eid is social obligation. It is to connect the individual with their communities and their societies. Charity is emphasised. Community work is emphasised. Caring for others is emphasised.
The Fo Guang Shan Buddhist Temple has been part of the Christchurch landscape for over 25 years. In its current location for the past 10, the temple provides an amazing space where people from every culture come to share experiences, learn new things, and maximise the joy from there life. The building is designed around the Longmen Grottos in China, a place were there is over 10,000 Buddhist Statues carved throughout an intricate network of caves.
It was an amazing evening, and the hall was jam packed. There was standing room only. While we were expecting 250, almost 550 people came. Most of the former refugees settled in the city came. There were 12 cultural times followed by a multicultural fashion show. This included performance by a sufi group in the city, Indian, Irish and Chinese dancing, Japanese drumming, and a kapa haka. Special guests at the event included National MP Michael Woodhouse, Human Rights Commission race relations adviser Rakesh Naidoo, and Dunedin Imam Shaykh Asrarul Haque Obaidullah.
Titled Perceptions of China Monitor: Survey 2018, the first-ever survey done by the New Zealand China Council has revealed interesting insights into New Zealanders’ perceptions of China, as a comprehensive partner in trade, science, the arts and more. The online survey of 1,001 New Zealanders aged 18 years and over, conducted between the 2nd and 9th of February 2018, showed that overall, opinions of New Zealand’s relationship with China are positive.
Also, many New Zealanders say they are keen for more engagement with China, such as increased trade and investment in tourism and education. On the cultural front, the survey shows New Zealanders are well aware of the value of learning Mandarin, and many are keen to visit China in the future.
The Minister for Ethnic Communities Jenny Salesa has once again thrown light on the need for diversity in New Zealand’s public sector boards. She was speaking at the launch event of this newspaper held at Auckland University of Technology on August 9.
“Not only do we need diversity in journalism, as this newspaper is aiming for, we also need ethnic communities to come forward and join our public sector boards. The current level of participation is much below the desired levels,” said the minister.
The Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management (MCDEM) has enlisted the support and advice of Auckland Emergency Management as it develops a new national public education strategy for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) communities, which is due to be released early next year. The ministry is also providing funding support to a joint project by the Christchurch City Council and Plains FM 96.9 – a community access radio station based there - to develop foreign language emergency messaging for radio. It has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Deaf Aotearoa as part of its ongoing drive to improve the accessibility of emergency information.
Organised by three community organisations, the Eid Carnival held in Christchurch on June 16, at the Lincoln Events Centre, was a huge success. The evening event, which culminated with the end of Ramadan, was made possible by the tireless efforts of volunteers and office bearers of the Canterbury Muslim Community Trust (CMCT), Muslim Association of Canterbury (MAC), and National Islamic Sister Assembly (NISA). Earlier in the day, Salat Idul Fitr (Eid prayers) were held at the Pioneer Stadium led by Imam Gamal of Masjid Al Noor of Christchurch, with takbeer starting at 7.30am, followed by salah.
The Christchurch Multicultural Strategy, launched last year, is a commitment by the Council to provide a framework and a set of goals and actions to ensure every single person in Christchurch feels a sense of belonging. It will also give everyone in Christchurch an equal opportunity to access the Council's services, information, as well as participating in the decision-making process. This Strategy acknowledges Ngāi Tahu are mana whenua — the indigenous people of our area in Christchurch, and that Te Tiriti o Waitangi is the foundation document of New Zealand.