Geoff Gallop

Geoff Gallop

Former Premier; Minister for Public Sector Management; Water Resources; Federal Affairs

    Beachside inter-faith service for tsunami victims on Sunday

    12/01/2005 12:00 PM

    Western Australians will participate in beachside services across the State this Sunday morning for victims of the tsunami disaster as part of the National Day of Mourning and Reflection.

    Premier Geoff Gallop said WA’s Tsunami Inter-Faith Service would be held at City Beach.

    The people of Perth are being invited to attend in a show of remembrance for the victims of the natural disaster and to highlight their continuing generous support for the rebuilding of the devastated lives in Australia’s neighbouring countries.

    The planned hour-long service at City Beach is being supported by 10 religious and community leaders in WA and will start at 7.59am.

    It will conclude with a minute’s silence at 8.59am - that is the time (WAST) the largest earthquake recorded in 40 years first struck in the sea off the Indonesian island of Sumatra on Boxing Day. The quake triggered the series of giant tsunami waves that wrought massive damage and took an estimated 160,000 lives and left millions homeless across South East Asia and the Indian Ocean region.

    A number of other beach services from Broome to Albany will also be held at the same time. Further details will be advertised later in the week.

    “The generosity of Western Australians in terms of cash donations and emergency supplies for the tsunami victims has been outstanding,” Dr Gallop said.

    “The services on Sunday are an opportunity for us all to show our generosity of spirit.

    “We will mourn those lost and reflect on our good fortune and also how we can still help in the recovery of so many shattered lives.

    “The Indian Ocean is the focus of the service because it links Western Australia to all the countries affected by the tsunamis.

    “We are asking people to bring a single flower. At the end of the service the flowers will be tossed into the sea as a final show of respect and remembrance.”

    The religious leaders offering prayers at Sunday’s City Beach service include Bishop Brian Kyme - Anglican; Nahid Meshgin - Bahai; Venerable Ajahn Cattamalo - Buddhist; Father Antonio Paganoni - Catholic; Pandit Shree Subrahmanya Bhat - Hindu; Ken Colbung - Indigenous (Bibulmun tribe); Rabbi David Freilich - Jewish; Dr Ameer Ali - Muslim; Satwant Singh Bassan - Sikh; and Reverend Gemmel Sherwood - Uniting Church.

    Community groups from the worst affected countries - Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka and Thailand - will also perform musical pieces between the prayers at the service.

    Dr Gallop appealed to people attending the City Beach service to arrive early and be seated on the sand by 7.45am as the proceedings will start at 7.59am sharp. The service will also be available to be viewed and heard from paved and grassed areas at the beach.

    The Premier also asked people to bring only one flower each, not bunches of flowers or arrangements, and not to use any plastic bindings or mountings that would not biodegrade in the ocean.

    Premier's office: 9222 9475