Sarawak church wedding with Muslim bridesmaids

Sarawakian Esther Joseph Kim celebrating her wedding with six Muslim friends in attendance as her bridesmaids. Photographer Ariffin Husain described it as "the most unique wedding in 2018", and said he hoped to see more such multicultural ceremonies
Sarawakian Esther Joseph Kim celebrating her wedding with six Muslim friends in attendance as her bridesmaids. Photographer Ariffin Husain described it as "the most unique wedding in 2018", and said he hoped to see more such multicultural ceremonies in the near future.PHOTO: ARIFFIN HUSAIN/FACEBOOK

PETALING JAYA • The concept of unity in diversity came to life at a church wedding in Sarawak which involved Muslim bridesmaids.

Pictures of the Dec 29 wedding show Sarawakian couple Sylvester Voon and Esther Joseph Kim getting married at St Joseph's Cathedral in the state capital Kuching.

Ms Kim had six Muslim bridesmaids who wore dark red baju kurung and pink hijab (headdress).

Wedding photographer Ariffin Husain, who captured the event at the cathedral and a nearby courthouse, described it on his Facebook page as "the most unique wedding in 2018".

"You won't get to see this every day... It's a church wedding, but all the bridesmaids are Muslims.

"Wearing headscarves too, it is very rare indeed," he wrote.

Mr Ariffin added that while Ms Kim is from Sarawak, most of her bridesmaids are from peninsular Malaysia.

"This is what we call 1 Malaysia... even though they are different in race and religion, this did not stop these good friends from celebrating one of the happiest days of their friend," he wrote.

He said it was rare and sweet to see friends from various races respecting each other, and he expressed the hope of seeing more such multicultural ceremonies in the near future.

Mr Ariffin told The Star newspaper that while he has been in this line of work since 2012, this wedding is the most special and beautiful for him.

"I hope that with the racial issues which happened lately, we can learn to put aside our differences, embrace each other with open arms and live together in harmony," he added.

His post received more than 800 likes and was shared over 250 times at the time of writing.

Many congratulated the couple and liked the photographs taken by Mr Ariffin.

At the end of last year, mStar - the Malay news site of The Star - reported a heart-warming story of an Indian doctor who chose nine of his close Malay friends to be groomsmen for his wedding.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on January 06, 2019, with the headline 'Sarawak church wedding with Muslim bridesmaids'. Print Edition | Subscribe