Friday, May 15, 2009

A Canadian Muslim Soldier Guides the Faithful in Afghanistan

Religious and spiritual values motivate soldiers, and in a pluralistic and culturally complex military like Canada's, these values need to be given their due in respectfully and healthy ways. For the Canadian Forces chaplain's branch, this challenge is slowly transforming the Branch from a solely Christian organization to a post-Christendom, multi-faith model. This article below from the Department of National Defence newspaper, The Maple Leaf, shows why the Branch needs to adapt, and also hints at how sensitivity to the place of other religions in our society can help us resist the "clash of civilisations" rhetoric that sometimes overhangs the war on Islamic extremism. - MP+

Sigs officer connects with fellow Muslims
by Lt Jennifer Kellerman
The Maple Leaf 29 April 2009 Vol. 12, No. 16

About 100 men kneel on colourful mats in the Fraise Chapel at Kandahar Airfield, listening intently to Captain Amir ElMasry as he leads Friday prayers for the last time. The CF soldier, a signals officer with the 3rd Battalion, The Royal Canadian Regiment Battle Group, is returning to Canada.

Capt ElMasry is not an imam – a Muslim religious scholar or mosque leader.When he arrived at KAF and began attending Friday prayers, however, he discovered that his strong Arabic and English language skills and general knowledge of Islam could help the hundreds of Muslim workers and soldiers who gather to pray every week. He offered to help prepare the prayers and give the sermon in both Arabic and English, and the congregation gladly accepted. Preparing for the weekly informal prayer service has come to occupy all the personal time he has in camp.

Read the complete article here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I don't believe muslims in the military can be trusted to not go postal one day. There have already been incidents in the US where muslims in uniform turn on their fellow Americans once their minds break from the deep indoctrination they have received as children, and their adult responsibilities. I also don't believe they could be trusted with national security type projects such as nuclear or aerospace type technology development.

Mad Padre

Mad Padre
Opinions expressed within are in no way the responsibility of anyone's employers or facilitating agencies and should by rights be taken as nothing more than one person's notional musings, attempted witticisms, and prayerful posturings.


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