First Mosque on a U.S. Military Base

November 6, 1998

Source: Chicago Tribune

On November 6, 1998, the Chicago Tribune reported that the Norfolk Naval Base in Virginia is home to the military's first mosque, Masjid al Da'wah. The mosque was opened a year ago and attendance for Friday services varies from 7 to 50. According to public affairs officer Paula Keicer, the Navy has 725 enlisted Muslims, though the Navy does not keep a count of Muslim officers. Lt. Malak Ibn Noel, the mosque's imam, states that "people are very, very proud of this room." The mosque occupies a small space in a building which also contains a synagogue and two chapels.