The sensitivity of religion has to be shielded in a multi-racial society like ours, unlike in some other countries. If religion is left to be exploited for personal conveniences, it would only bring more disharmony and disunity to the people.
Accordingly, one should decide wisely when one has the intention to convert to another faith. Anecdotal evidence shows that most conversions of faith in our society occur because of a love relationship that ends up in a marriage. Most of these marriages, however, have endured and the converts have found solace in the religion they have chosen. Many have stayed loyal to the religion they chose till death, causing no ill-feeling and disharmony to society.
Nevertheless, converting to get married to a person of another religion has more far reaching consequences than converting for the incontrovertible love of the faith per se. When a person decides to convert to a religion to solemnise a marriage he should also be aware of the implications thereafter if he decides to leave the religion if there is a marital break-up. It would involve another person in the case of a marriage the spouse. It also involves children the product of the marriage.
Let say, he alone leaves the religion, leaving his spouse and children. This, in our society, is going to bring some social stigma to the abandoned spouse and children. The spouse's and children's sense of self could be affected in the eyes of the society, specifically when matters of religion become an issue in the case of customary practices that a religion adheres to such as marriages, deaths and burials. Some could even end up feeling 'neither here nor there' when it comes to this kind of religious affiliation due to filial piety.
Be it as it may - whether it is because of a love relationship or the faith per se that has convinced a person to convert - it would be best for the person to let his spouse and family members know his new religious status, as upon death many innocent parties would be affected if the conversion status or his religious practices are indistinguishable.
There are means and procedures in law that could make one's religious conversion or status a formal course of action. It is proper that he is officially registered with the right body as a convert with, whatever name he chooses. Playing 'hide and seek' with religion would make the person none the wiser but in turn burden the authorities and his loved ones.
The more significant insinuation to this is that if the person dies, everyone is aware that he had characteristically professed a religion of his choice and it would no more be a shock to his family members.
Then again, a conversion of convenience as in the case for seeking pleasure, for rewards, avoiding maintenance and seeking child custody - may only make the new-found religion a charade to the convert. It may not likely bring lasting faith reconciliation to the person as his conscience would tell him that he is not really into it, but for some other ulterior motive. There is always a likelihood that the person may leave the religion after pulling off his needs.
Many have left the country after seeking redress for their wanton desires by exploiting religion. The authority has to be aware of this form of hypocrisy and take anticipatory measures not to condone this practice. Or at least take steps to counsel the converts-to-be before they are legitimately accepted into the fold.
As the status of one's religion can be a solemn issue in our society, we should take this matter of conversion of faith seriously to ensure that it does not only bring problems to the authorities or to the person involved and his family members. Religion has always been a sensitive issue in our society. It is best that all are informed of the ramifications if one were to walk in and out of a religion at one's own free will.