Sermon contest winners awarded

National 2 minutes, 32 seconds


WINNERS of a sermon competition, which was held in conjunction with the International Anti-Corruption Day, were named in a ceremony at Sekolah Ugama Pengiran Anak Puteri Mutawakillah Hayatul Bolkiah in Kg Serusop, yesterday.

In the sermon deliverance catergory, Mohd Yadiy Hj Mat Hassan clinched the top spot with a score of 93 per cent, followed by Adi Hafizee Zanidi with 89.5 per cent, and Muhd Syahirul Syafiq Rashid with 74.5 per cent in second and third places respectively.

 In the sermon writing category, the first place belonged to Suriati Hj Ali Hussin, who scored 85.3 percent, while Dk Norasidah Pg Hj Rakawi and  Noor Syazwani Hj Majin came in second and third with a score of 78.8 and 78.5 per cent respectively.    

Presenting the prizes, comprising cash and certificates as well as trophies, to the winners was the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Religious Affairs, Dato Seri Setia Hj Abd Aziz Orang Kaya Maharaja Lela Hj Mohd Yusof. In an interview with The Brunei times, Muhd Yadiy, champion of the sermon deliverance category, expressed his joy as he did not expect to be chosen as the winner given that he only had little time to practise prior to the competition.

The 20-year-old said that to read a sermon effectively, the reader must be able to convey the contents fluently while also understanding the message that was delivered.

“Before the competition, I had to read the texts repeatedly to be able to say it out loud fluently, and to understand them,” he said.

Muhd Yadiy also said besides fluency and comprehension of the content, intonation is also an important criteria.

“I also had to find ways on how to present in a way listeners would be able to understand, so they would not get distracted or become sleepy when I deliver my sermon,” he added.

Sharing the same opinion was Suriati Hj Ali Hussin, assistant writer from the Islamic Dakwah Centre, who was also the champion of the sermon writing category. She said for a person to write a sermon that is effective and easily understood by people, he or she should spend a good amount of time doing research related to the topics to be conveyed.

“Especially for this competition where we had to relate corruption to what was told in the Quran, and the policies related to the public services; the message we conveyed and the facts we included must be strongly enforced with our findings from the Quran,” said Suriati.

“I spent around two weeks writing up my sermon, and a good sermon should really be easily read and understood by the people, and most importantly, it should be authentic,” she added.

Her winning sermon will be read this Friday, to commemorate the International Anti-Corruption Day. The competition was a collaboration between the Anti-Corruption Bureau, Mosque Affairs Department under the Ministry of Religious Affairs and the Mosque Takmir Committee of Masjid Mohamed Bolkiah.

It was aimed at improving and spreading public awareness and understanding towards corruption, especially on offences and prevention in civil and Islamic perspectives.

The Brunei Times