Assalamuallaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh
Dearest brothers and sisters in Islam;
1998 has witnessed some fundamental changes in terms of social, economic, and political structures in Asia, in general, and in Southeast Asia including those in Malaysia and Indonesia, in particular. The economic crisis has swept across most of Asia. Currencies of many countries have lost much of their values, and there are still no signs of recovery. As a result, social turmoils have torn apart many Asian societies; the most noticeable one is the riot in Indonesia that led to the resignation of a seemingly invincible President Suharto.
The rapid and dramatic changes during a relatively short period of time have created confusion in the minds of many Muslims, especially those who are from Nusantara, and have left many questions unanswered. Why did the changes take place? What implications will they have on the well-being of Islam and the Muslims in Nusantara as well as in the world? How can we as Muslims from Malaysia and Indonesia understand these changes, and therefore contribute to the future of Islam in Nusantara? What are the challenges and obstacles that the Muslims and Islam will face in the 21st. century given the changes that have taken place in the 20th. century?
These are some of the issues that will be discussed during the 1998 MISG-ISNET Convention. The theme for this convention is "Islam di Nusantara Menjelang Abad ke-21." The convention is a retrospection of the evolution and development of Islam in Nusantara, and a formulation of possible avenues for the Muslims to contribute toward the well-being and development of the Muslims and Islam in Nusantara in the coming century.
On behalf of the Convention Committee, I would like to welcome all of you to this convention. Insha-Allah, your presence and participation will make this convention more meaningful.
May Allah bless you.
MISG President 1997-1998
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