The US Navy and Islam, Wicca on the High Seas

Public Affairs for the USS John C Stennis (CVN 74) recently published two personal interest stories on the Sailors who act as lay leaders for the Muslim and wiccan populations onboard. For the Islamic Sailors,

Marron Diaz, from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, is the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis’ (CVN 74) Security department’s urinalysis coordinator, but on Sunday evenings he is the ship’s Muslim lay leader…”

For those Sailors claiming wicca,

Aviation Electronics Technician 2nd Class Danny Sancho, from Loma Linda, California, [is] the Wiccan lay leader and a leading petty officer [on] the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74)…

Interestingly, both Diaz and Sancho start their stories by saying the came from Catholic families. Because Catholicism is heavily liturgical (ie, ritualistic), a person can “participate” in Catholicism without necessarily feeling Catholic — it can be an “impersonal” faith. For a person who seeks an intimate faith, other religions can be an appealing departure from Catholicism.



  • I see a theme, unfortunately our Christian faith is at an all time highest attack – stand your ground.

  • William Robinson

    On the other hand, given that almost all chaplains represent some Christian denomination, these stories highlight the fact (and it is a fact) that Airmen of all religious traditions are cared for.

    Which both highlights the importance of faith generally (even if some of those faith traditions are eternally off base) and demonstrates that the military isn’t an arm of some unconstitutional theocracy, as is claimed by anti-religionists who want nothing more than to clear all religion from the public square.

    Consistent with the First Amendment, when it comes to religion, more is better. For all.

  • Religious Freedom is for all religions, certain people say. I know that annoys other people. What is particularly interesting to me is that the one religious freedom that does not exist at all in the political realm is for Agnosticism or Atheism – two points of view which are disallowed entirely and seldom mentioned. So, thank whoever you thank for giving you the gift of faith in the one true religion and the gall to advocate for the elimination of all the false religions on a website which pretends to support religious freedom. MY GOD REIGNS! (not yours!)

    • @Lardy Squelch

      Where are you seeing any advocacy “for the elimination of all the false religions”? You seem to be reading something not written here.

      Agnosticism and atheism are quite well represented in the public sphere. They are not the stigma you seem to think they are.