News Release

Interfaith Group Participates in Parliament House Debate

As the Queensland Parliament sat debating legislation on Tuesday 11th October, an excited group of approximately 60 young adults, aged 17-30 from four faith groups gathered together to participate in a rousing debate on religious freedom, just metres away in an adjoining room to where politicians were meeting.

Six courageous young adults planned, researched and delivered speeches on a very interesting topic: whether religious freedom is a right or a privilege. Represented in the debate were members from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, The Catholic Church, The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community from the Jimboomba Mosque and The Sikh community.

      President Asa Smibert (Eight Mile Plains Stake) President Lorin Nicholson (Cleveland Stake) Ahsin Waris  Scott Young  Zain Baig  Genisa Mata'afa 


The evening focused on religious cohesion. Each faith shared their view of religious freedom and the desire to find the same outcome: the opportunity to live each religion in peace and not be discriminated for it. Although the participants were very convincing, it was ultimately decided that religious freedom is a right and a privilege, not one or the other.  

                                                          Sahibjeet Bains, Ahsin Waris and Baden Rostedt               

Sonny Su’a, who attended the event noted that "The highlight of my evening was the chance I had to learn about the other religions and their view on different topics. I didn’t realise how much we had in common until I heard them speak. I could really relate to them. It was a great experience."

The young adults were privileged to meet five Members of Queensland Parliament. Lawrence Springborg (Southern Downs), Jon Krause (Beaudesert) and Rob Moloek (Southport) each spoke and commended the young adults on their courage to attend the debate and talk about these tough issues.

                                                               Rob Molhoek speaking to young adults      

Many young adults commented, "we are indeed very lucky to celebrate religious freedom through cohesion with other faiths. The majesty of debating in the Parliament House, Brisbane made the evening even more special."

Style Guide Note:When reporting about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, please use the complete name of the Church in the first reference. For more information on the use of the name of the Church, go to our online Style Guide.