US Navy Chaplain Brings Islam to Africa
People tend to connect more through their faith than anything else.
– Chaplain Abuhena Saifulislam
US Navy Chaplain (Cmdr) Abuhena Saifulislam, stationed in Ramstein Air Base, Germany, as the USAFRICOM deputy command chaplain, recently spent a week in Djibouti
with members of Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa Religious and Civil Affairs, they met with the deputy director of Islamic affairs for Djibouti, the Sultan of Tadjoura and representatives of the Red Crescent Society of Djibouti among others.
Besides meeting with local leaders, Saifulislam participated in religious services at a local mosque and the American Camp Lemonnier.
Oddly, the CJTF-HOA article awkwardly tries to portray Chaplain Saifulislam as a celebrity chaplain:
He has served as chaplain for such dignitaries as Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama as well as Marine Gen. James Mattis.
There isn’t really such a thing as a “chaplain for dignitaries” in the US military, and Presidents and Generals aren’t “served” by chaplains. President George Bush, in particular, would probably take issue with the implication “his” chaplain was an Imam. Other than trying to make Saifulislam seem important, it’s unclear why the article even makes such references.
The article also notes Saifulislam — whose name means “sword of Islam” — “developed a passion to serve Islam” long before he was even a naturalized US citizen.
More interesting, given today’s society, is that people like Michael “Mikey” Weinstein and his assistant Chris Rodda have not attacked Chaplain Saifulislam for evangelizing his faith to local nationals, elevating his faith above his country, and failing to support homosexuality.
But since he’s Muslim, he apparently gets a pass.