19 April, 2009

Attempts to convert Mama Sarah Obama

There has been an attempt, yesterday, to convert Mama Sarah Obama, President Barack Obama's foster grandmother, to Christianity:

President Barack Obama's Kenyan Muslim grandmother came within hours of converting to Christianity yesterday but changed her mind after her son prevailed on her not to attend a large evangelistic crusade at a sports stadium where she was to be baptized.

Mama Sarah Obama had dressed and was waiting for a vehicle, hired by members of the Nyang'oma Seventh Day Adventist Church, to take her the 60 miles to the baptisimal service being held at the Jomo Kenyatta Sports Ground in Kisumu, the Nairobi Daily Nation reported. WorldNet

Attempts to convert US President Barack Obama’s grand mother to Christianity flopped on Saturday at the 11th hour after family members opposed the move.

Although Mama Sarah Obama had dressed up for the day, her son, Saidi Obama, and other family members were adamant that she would not attend a baptism ceremony organised by the Seventh Day Adventist Church (SDA). The Daily Nation

Presdident Obama's family is an extended one, of Kenyan, American and Indonesian; and of Muslims and Christians. Obama's father and paternal grandfather were both Muslims. The mother of Obamas father, the President's real 'granny', Habiba Akumu Obama was a Muslim too. Mama Sarah Obama, his foster 'granny' and the woman who brought up Barack's father - to protect Mr. Obama's presidential ambition during the recent race for the White House - would at times down play her being a Muslim: "In the world of today, children have different religions from their parents," she would say.

In East Africa, it's normal for extended families to have different religions. It's so with my own extended East African family. In my first marriage, I had some of my in-laws who are Christians and some are Hindus - who are now uncles or aunts or cousins or grannies to my daughters; in my present marriage, I have in-laws who are staunch Christians. I, nor any one else in my family, find this strange.

Why would any one want to disturb such an old woman in such a way? Why would any one want her to convert this late in her life? Had Barack Obama not become the president of the US, no one would have bothered Mama Sarah at all. But for some people, the foster grandmother of the US president should never be a Muslim. "He is not a Muslim, he's a Christian," General Colin Powell said of Mr. Obama. "But the really right answer is 'what if he is?' Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country? The answer's no." Is there any thing wrong with Mama Sarah Obama being a Muslim: the answer is no.

Read more here.