Video of church band playing Raya song goes viral

PETALING JAYA: A video of a Catholic church band in Keningau, Sabah playing a popular Hari Raya song after Sunday mass has gone viral.

The 27-second video posted on Facebook on Sunday, the first day of Hari Raya Aidilfitri, shows the church band of the Holy Family Pilgrimage Centre Nulu Sosopon playing an instrumental version of Suasana Hari Raya while several altar boys remove candles from the altar.

Choir leader Harry Wong said that the four-man band decided to play the classic Raya song to spread love and solidarity during this festive season.

"It's Hari Raya and we wanted to enjoy the festivities, and at the same time we wanted to show that it is not wrong to play a Hari Raya song in a church to mark the occasion," he said when contacted, adding that he would be happy to see other churches in Malaysia displaying a similar show of solidarity.

Wong, 45, said he was surprised that the video went viral as it is the norm for the church band to play festive songs during celebrations such as Chinese New Year and Hari Raya.

Netizens have praised the church for the gesture.

"I am proud to be from Sabah. We are made up of different races and religion but we respect each other. Although we are not from the same religion, but we come from the same roots ... Keep up this spirit for the next generation," One'z Afiq said on Facebook.

"This is why Sabahans are having a strong relationship even though we hold different beliefs and thoughts – cause we have respect and love to each other!" added Ryn Musindra Soong.

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