Islam was first introduced in mainland Mindanao trough Maguindanao by Sharif Awliya. He married a local lady who gave him a daughter. When Sharif Awliya left, Sharif Maraja followed then by Sharif Kabungsuwan. Sharuf Kabungsuwan intensified the missionary activities of his predecessors and was credited to be the founder of the Maguindanao Sultanate.
Islam spread through intermarriages and political ties with neighboring ruling families. By the mid-16th century, the Moroland was in the process of becoming part of the wide Muslim world of Asia.