Getbig Bodybuilding, Figure and Fitness Forums
July 23, 2014, 11:03:24 PM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
 
   Home   Help Calendar Login Register  
Pages: 1 [2] 3 4 ... 12   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Prayer and Religion in Public Life  (Read 26913 times)
Decker
Getbig V
*****
Posts: 5786


View Profile
« Reply #25 on: April 12, 2007, 02:32:48 PM »

What does the lawsuit of the city of Las Cruces New Mexico have to do with Christian groups???  It's the name of a city, dude!  Same thing with the Mt. Soledad Cross.  There's no correlation.  I appreciate the fact that you're trying to stand up for the ACLU.  And again, they used to be a worthy opponent, but we're no longer hearing about these cases.
Relax.  

I'm just mentioning why many of the cases with ACLU involvement come to be.  It's not like the ACLU has spies in churches across the country waiting to pounce on the laity.

The ACLU has not gone too far.  Opponents of the ACLU have been conditioned to expect less from their constitutional rights and liberties.

If you look at some of the cases where the ACLU defends christians, I'm certain you would change your opinion.  See my post above.
Report to moderator   Logged
Decker
Getbig V
*****
Posts: 5786


View Profile
« Reply #26 on: April 12, 2007, 02:35:40 PM »

Here's my point exactly:

Freedom Fighters
Department of Justice ramps up efforts to enforce the First Amendment.
Brad. A. Greenberg | posted 4/11/2007 08:32AM


In the five years before President Bush took office, the Department of Justice (DOJ) reviewed one education discrimination complaint involving religion and investigated none. In the six years since, 82 cases were reviewed and 40 investigated.

Now the Bush administration wants to enhance those efforts with greater governmental resources. U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales announced at a Southern Baptist leaders' meeting in February that the DOJ was launching the First Freedom Project, an initiative to further combat religious discrimination and protect religious freedom.

"One of the great strengths of America is the fact we are a nation of tolerance. We respect different viewpoints; we respect different beliefs," Wan J. Kim, assistant attorney general for civil rights, told CT. "That separates us from a lot of other nations. When we do this work to protect against religious discrimination, we strengthen America. And we do so in a way that is nondenominational."

The initiative will include the Religious Freedom Task Force, chaired by Kim, which will employ various divisions of the DOJ to review discrimination complaints. The new www.firstfreedom.gov website touts previous successes, educates Americans about their rights, and provides a channel for filing complaints online. The department also will hold a series of regional training seminars. Events have been scheduled for Tampa on April 25 and Seattle on May 10.

Even before the First Freedom Project, the DOJ's stepped-up efforts have generated greater religious freedom, according to the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty. Government lawyers convinced a federal court last year that a New Jersey school had unconstitutionally censored a Christian song from a talent show. The DOJ compelled the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority in 2005 to accommodate religious beliefs, even if it meant bus drivers wouldn't work certain days.

The First Freedom Project comes at a time when concern about religious persecution has heightened. Between 1992 and 2005, religious-discrimination complaints filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission jumped 69 percent.

Given the Bush administration's ties to religious conservatives, some experts greeted the initiative with skepticism.

"They need to reach out to many different constituencies that have different approaches to church-state issues to give people confidence this will be a straightforward educational project and not a political battering ram," said Melissa Rogers, visiting professor of religion and public policy at Wake Forest University Divinity School. "[The unveiling] sends the opposite signals."

But Charles Haynes, a senior scholar at the First Amendment Center, said the Bush administration has a track record of defending religious minorities.

"It is unfortunate we are so polarized today that we can't even acknowledge opportunities where we can agree," Haynes said. "Just because it is coming out of the Bush administration, some people decide it has to be condemned completely and labeled a fake and a fraud and that the work being done to protect religious minorities doesn't matter. Well, it does matter to Muslims and Sikhs and Hindus and Jews. Whether you are on the Right or the Left, this is exactly the kind of Justice Department you should want. This is exactly what we want them to be doing to protect religious freedom."

Copyright © 2007 Christianity Today.
More power to them.  I just hope that the effort does not devolve into some ACLJ special interest group asserting the primacy of christianity.

Have a great day Colossus.  I gotta head home to the wife.
Report to moderator   Logged
Colossus_500
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 4005


Psalm 139


View Profile
« Reply #27 on: April 12, 2007, 02:37:16 PM »

Relax.  

I'm just mentioning why many of the cases with ACLU involvement come to be.  It's not like the ACLU has spies in churches across the country waiting to pounce on the laity.

The ACLU has not gone too far.  Opponents of the ACLU have been conditioned to expect less from their constitutional rights and liberties.

If you look at some of the cases where the ACLU defends christians, I'm certain you would change your opinion.  See my post above.
I read it.  Truth be told.  If I simply follow the briefings that the ALCJ (www.alcj.org - maybe you should check it out) even just a mere 3 years, I will see the ACLU's fingerprints all over these cases, and they all deal with religious liberty as it pertains to Christians or Judeo-Christian values.  Check it out for yourself, bro.  
Report to moderator   Logged
Colossus_500
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 4005


Psalm 139


View Profile
« Reply #28 on: April 12, 2007, 02:38:12 PM »

More power to them.  I just hope that the effort does not devolve into some ACLJ special interest group asserting the primacy of christianity.

Have a great day Colossus.  I gotta head home to the wife.
See ya, bro.  It was great debating this topic with you.  Thanks for keeping it civil.   Cheesy
Report to moderator   Logged
OzmO
Getbig V
*****
Posts: 20496


Take Money Out of Politics!


View Profile
« Reply #29 on: April 12, 2007, 02:38:26 PM »

No, they aren't the plaintiff in this particular case, but it does speak to the argument that you and Ozmo have been trying to give with regard to keeping organized religion out of government.  These liberties that you claim the ACLU fights for (and I agree, there was a day that the ACLU stood for rights of all people, but that's no longer true...grant me that much) are available to Christians as well.  And what we are seeing day after day now is a fight to trample the same liberties that belong to Christians.  I specify Christianity because I don't see the ACLU arguing cases against any other religion.

Well you don't see any other religion, Christianity,  being represented or associated with city, state or federal government offices, institutions etc...

That's it's the only thing you see.
Report to moderator   Logged
24KT
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Female
Posts: 24240


Gold Savings Account Rep +1 (310) 409-2244


View Profile WWW
« Reply #30 on: April 12, 2007, 07:55:41 PM »

I had an eventful day yesterday.  Attended and participated in a number of meetings with different organizations/entities.  Most of these meetings involved prayer:

1.  Honolulu City Council Session:  It began with a devotional and prayer by a local pastor.  The City Council members are overwhelmingly liberal Democrat (about 8 out of 9).  I was very surprised.   

2.  State Government Entity:  Attended a meeting that did not include prayer.  I would have fallen off of my chair.   Smiley 

3.  Nonproft Religious Entity:  The meeting began and ended with prayer.  I was asked to give the closing prayer (I hate doing that.)  These prayers were expected. 

4.  Professional Society:  Attended an annual dinner of professionals.  Not a religious group at all.  The meeting began with a prayer.  The room was overwhelming liberal.

What struck me was what an integral part prayer is in our public life.  I bet the ACLU disapproves.  (Sorry, couldn't resist.   Smiley)   


Shhhh... careful now, ...you're contradicting I-ones stance that you can't be a Liberal Democrat and still be a Christian too.  Wink
Report to moderator   Logged

w
Colossus_500
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 4005


Psalm 139


View Profile
« Reply #31 on: April 13, 2007, 06:27:11 AM »

Well you don't see any other religion, Christianity,  being represented or associated with city, state or federal government offices, institutions etc...

That's it's the only thing you see.
Maybe then it IS, IN FACT, because we are a nation founded on Judeo-Christian values then.   Undecided  Why would we have ever bothered to put those items in place... the Ten Commandments in the Courtrooms, and use language like "O Ye, O Ye, the Supreme Court of the United States is now in session and may God save this honorable Court"? to open sessions in the Supreme Court??

You're right, Ozmo, it does matter how you look at it. 
Report to moderator   Logged
Colossus_500
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 4005


Psalm 139


View Profile
« Reply #32 on: April 13, 2007, 06:28:59 AM »


Shhhh... careful now, ...you're contradicting I-ones stance that you can't be a Liberal Democrat and still be a Christian too.  Wink
Surely God loves the liberal democrat too....  So long as that liberal democrat acknowledges Jesus as Savior and Lord over his life.   Cheesy
Report to moderator   Logged
Colossus_500
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 4005


Psalm 139


View Profile
« Reply #33 on: April 13, 2007, 07:33:43 AM »

Round two: For second year, N.J. school officials attempt to block student promotion of Day of Truth
Officials backed down last year after receiving letter from ADF attorneys; this year, lawsuit being filed
Thursday, April 12, 2007, 9:50 AM (MST) |
ADF Media Relations | 480-444-0020


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
New Jersey high school officials back down, will permit “make-up” Day of Truth observance
ALLENDALE, N.J. — For the second year in a row, Northern Highlands Regional High School officials are blocking students’ efforts to promote the Day of Truth.  In 2006, administrators backed down on their prohibition of the event after Alliance Defense Fund attorneys sent a letter to the school on behalf of student Jason Aufiero.  This year, ADF attorneys are filing suit.

“Once again, school officials are attempting to strip students of their First Amendment rights,” said ADF Litigation Counsel Jeremy Tedesco.  “Nearly 40 years ago, the Supreme Court ruled that free speech rights do not come to a screeching halt at the schoolhouse gate.  This principle applies with full force to students attending Northern Highlands Regional High School.”

Aufiero and other members of the school’s Christian Club have been repeatedly thwarted in their attempts to promote the Day of Truth, which occurs on April 19 this year.  Club members are asking to hold their activities the following day in order to coincide with the day of their scheduled club meeting.

With more than 5,000 students already registered this year, the Day of Truth is an opportunity for Christian students to respectfully present a different viewpoint than students participating in the Day of Silence, sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network.

Officials told Aufiero that he and the Christian Club could not engage in any expressive activities regarding the Day of Truth.  Club members requested to distribute literature regarding the Day of Truth to students during non-instructional time, to have an announcement on the Day of Truth read over the school’s loudspeaker, and to wear Day of Truth T-shirts.

School officials continue to support the activities of the school’s Gay-Straight Alliance Club, which expresses support for the homosexual agenda via the Day of Silence event, which occurs on April 18 this year.  In 2006, school officials had agreed to end their ban on Day of Truth activities after they were contacted via letter by ADF attorneys (www.telladf.org/news/story.aspx?cid=3774).

A copy of the complaint filed by ADF attorneys in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey in Aufiero v. Northern Highlands Regional High School Board of Education is available at www.telladf.org/UserDocs/AufieroComplaint.pdf.

“It is unconstitutional for school officials to bar the Day of Truth while at the same time welcoming the Day of Silence with open arms,” Tedesco said.  “They cannot be permitted to continue engaging in viewpoint discrimination against Christian students.”

ADF is a legal alliance defending the right to hear and speak the Truth through strategy, training, funding, and litigation.
Report to moderator   Logged
Straw Man
Getbig V
*****
Posts: 24821


one dwells in nirvana


View Profile
« Reply #34 on: April 13, 2007, 09:12:52 AM »

I had an eventful day yesterday.  Attended and participated in a number of meetings with different organizations/entities.  Most of these meetings involved prayer:

1.  Honolulu City Council Session:  It began with a devotional and prayer by a local pastor.  The City Council members are overwhelmingly liberal Democrat (about 8 out of 9).  I was very surprised.   

2.  State Government Entity:  Attended a meeting that did not include prayer.  I would have fallen off of my chair.   Smiley 

3.  Nonproft Religious Entity:  The meeting began and ended with prayer.  I was asked to give the closing prayer (I hate doing that.)  These prayers were expected. 

4.  Professional Society:  Attended an annual dinner of professionals.  Not a religious group at all.  The meeting began with a prayer.  The room was overwhelming liberal.

What struck me was what an integral part prayer is in our public life.  I bet the ACLU disapproves.  (Sorry, couldn't resist.   Smiley)   

big deal - sample size of four is essentially meaningless.  Added to that - 2 of the four were not government entities but private organizations (I'm assuming).   I assume also that in the city council meeting that no one was forced to attend or pray.   Prayer before secular meetings or groups are largely a ceremonial formality.   
Report to moderator   Logged
OzmO
Getbig V
*****
Posts: 20496


Take Money Out of Politics!


View Profile
« Reply #35 on: April 13, 2007, 09:56:55 AM »

Maybe then it IS, IN FACT, because we are a nation founded on Judeo-Christian values then.   Undecided  Why would we have ever bothered to put those items in place... the Ten Commandments in the Courtrooms, and use language like "O Ye, O Ye, the Supreme Court of the United States is now in session and may God save this honorable Court"? to open sessions in the Supreme Court??

You're right, Ozmo, it does matter how you look at it. 

Our nation was founded by Christians right?  It only makes sense that they would meld the 2 in many instances.  I don't disagree with you really.  I have not seen any thing in my life in these instances, crosses on city parks, "so help me God" in oaths etc... that i disagree with.  I'm for "christmas vacation" 

I just don't think it's a "organize attack on Christianity"  Maybe you aren't saying that exactly. 

I think we must start to do something about it when someone tells you you can't build a church in a city.  Until then, to me it's a waste of time and money to go after dumb stuff like the pledge of alligence.
Report to moderator   Logged
Beach Bum
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 40739


View Profile
« Reply #36 on: April 13, 2007, 11:00:33 AM »

big deal - sample size of four is essentially meaningless.  Added to that - 2 of the four were not government entities but private organizations (I'm assuming).   I assume also that in the city council meeting that no one was forced to attend or pray.   Prayer before secular meetings or groups are largely a ceremonial formality.   

Hardly meaningless.  Of course no one was forced to pray, but if you had matters that were being voted on and needed to testify then you had to attend.  But that's not the point.  The fact that these liberal Democrats brought in a pastor to give a devotional and prayer speaks volumes of how important prayer and religion are in our society.  This is a Council that oversees more than 800,000 people.  I suspect that this happens with other entities in many other parts of the country.     
Report to moderator   Logged
Straw Man
Getbig V
*****
Posts: 24821


one dwells in nirvana


View Profile
« Reply #37 on: April 13, 2007, 06:01:27 PM »

Hardly meaningless.  Of course no one was forced to pray, but if you had matters that were being voted on and needed to testify then you had to attend.  But that's not the point.  The fact that these liberal Democrats brought in a pastor to give a devotional and prayer speaks volumes of how important prayer and religion are in our society.  This is a Council that oversees more than 800,000 people.  I suspect that this happens with other entities in many other parts of the country.     

I'm sure it's very meaningful and speaks volumes to YOU but 4 non-random samples are no basis to draw any meaningful conclusion about anything.    Besides that, humans have a tendency to notice those things which confirm their preconceived beliefs (aka prejudice) and to not notice/ignore those which don't. 
Report to moderator   Logged
Beach Bum
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 40739


View Profile
« Reply #38 on: April 13, 2007, 06:12:44 PM »

I'm sure it's very meaningful and speaks volumes to YOU but 4 non-random samples are no basis to draw any meaningful conclusion about anything.    Besides that, humans have a tendency to notice those things which confirm their preconceived beliefs (aka prejudice) and to not notice/ignore those which don't. 

Your opinion.  I disagree.
Report to moderator   Logged
Straw Man
Getbig V
*****
Posts: 24821


one dwells in nirvana


View Profile
« Reply #39 on: April 13, 2007, 06:28:02 PM »

Your opinion.  I disagree.

for some reason I'm not surprised but my "opinion" (regarding methodology)  happens to be true.  Look up the term sampling error (or not - who cares really).    Like I said, I'm sure it's "speaks volumes" and is meaningful to you and if it makes you feel warm and fuzzy then good for you. 
Report to moderator   Logged
Beach Bum
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 40739


View Profile
« Reply #40 on: April 13, 2007, 07:11:18 PM »

for some reason I'm not surprised but my "opinion" (regarding methodology)  happens to be true.  Look up the term sampling error (or not - who cares really).    Like I said, I'm sure it's "speaks volumes" and is meaningful to you and if it makes you feel warm and fuzzy then good for you. 

Why would I look up "sampling error"?  I am expressing an opinion based on my personal observation/experience.  This isn't a scientific discussion.  I didn't do empirical research.  It's an opinion.  And I didn't say anything about being "warm and fuzzy."  Just something I found very interesting. 
Report to moderator   Logged
Straw Man
Getbig V
*****
Posts: 24821


one dwells in nirvana


View Profile
« Reply #41 on: April 13, 2007, 07:19:07 PM »

Why would I look up "sampling error"?  I am expressing an opinion based on my personal observation/experience.  This isn't a scientific discussion.  I didn't do empirical research.  It's an opinion.  And I didn't say anything about being "warm and fuzzy."  Just something I found very interesting. 

Didn't I say that it was meaningful "TO YOU"?
Report to moderator   Logged
militarymuscle69
Getbig IV
****
Posts: 2663


You can't be a citizen unless you serve


View Profile
« Reply #42 on: April 13, 2007, 08:46:03 PM »

Our nation was founded by Christians right?  It only makes sense that they would meld the 2 in many instances.  I don't disagree with you really.  I have not seen any thing in my life in these instances, crosses on city parks, "so help me God" in oaths etc... that i disagree with.  I'm for "christmas vacation" 

I just don't think it's a "organize attack on Christianity"  Maybe you aren't saying that exactly. 

I think we must start to do something about it when someone tells you you can't build a church in a city.  Until then, to me it's a waste of time and money to go after dumb stuff like the pledge of alligence.

you don't think that kids learning and reciting the pledge of allegience is important? If we let the idae of allegience to the american flag go by the way side, America will go right with it.
Report to moderator   Logged

gotta love life
Beach Bum
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 40739


View Profile
« Reply #43 on: November 04, 2007, 01:58:28 AM »

Attended a fundraising event for cancer research this evening.  It started with prayer.  Attendees included state government officials (including our Lt. Gov.) and people from various segments of the community. 
Report to moderator   Logged
Beach Bum
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 40739


View Profile
« Reply #44 on: November 25, 2007, 10:18:07 AM »

The University of Hawaii football gathers for a team prayer, often with members of the opposing team, right after the games. 

There is also this from the best player in college football (Colt Brennan):  • Colt Brennan said the team has a lot of spiritual faith. He said with such diverse backgrounds, one religion is not pushed over another. It's just that that most share a faith in a higher being, and that helps unify the team.   http://blogs.honoluluadvertiser.com/index.php?blog=9
Report to moderator   Logged
Beach Bum
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 40739


View Profile
« Reply #45 on: December 16, 2007, 11:12:02 AM »

Terrific story about June Jones, his near fatal accident, and how his faith impacts his life.

http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071216/NEWS01/712160360/1001
Report to moderator   Logged
Beach Bum
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 40739


View Profile
« Reply #46 on: December 24, 2007, 08:30:27 AM »

More extensive article on the impact of prayer and faith on the UH football team.  The link has pictures showing players huddled in prayer. 

 
Posted on: Monday, December 24, 2007
Hawaii football team attributes wins to God

Video: How the Warriors "BELIEVE"

By Michael Tsai
Advertiser Staff Writer


   
"You can see it before and after every practice and every game," Watson said. "We pray and give glory to the one who makes it all possible for us."


Photos by RICHARD AMBO | The Honolulu Advertiser

   
Warriors Keala Watson, top, and Shane Austin gather with teammates for a group prayer after practice.
 
   
Senior wide receiver C.J. Hawthorne leads team prayers before and after games and practices. "Humility is an amazing thing," he says.

 
Each week, Solomon Elimimian would look out across the sweep of green-clad fans that slowly but surely packed Aloha Stadium this season, feel their thunderous applause as the pulse in his veins, feel the weight of their hope, their expectations and, yes, their belief.

And as his eyes scanned the great mass of bodies crowding the sticky, garbage-strewn bleachers, he'd see that word over and over again.

"Believe."

It was there on giant poster boards, on T-shirts, on the naked chests of pale, skinny classmates.

"We believe."

"I believe."

"Believe."

And while he appreciated the good will and sincerity of those messages, Elimimian, a gifted linebacker and devoted Christian, kept coming back to the same question.

"Believe what?" Elimimian said. "Believe in who?"

They are True Believers, these 2007 Warriors.

From head coach June Jones to Heisman finalist Colt Brennan to the unrecognized contributors who man the scout team, they are bonded not just by the goals they have set, the hours of toil and preparation they have invested to achieve them, and the perfect season that has been its vindication, but by a shared belief in the power of religious faith.

"We just happen to have a lot of Christian guys on this team, but we also have a lot of guys of all kinds of faiths," Jones said. "The principles of love and sacrifice are what really bond them together."

Many athletes lay claim to being men of God, but few teams have demonstrated such a collective insistence on using their successes on the field to achieve what they believe to be their true calling as athletes.

"You can see it before and after every practice and every game," said junior defensive lineman Keala Watson. "We pray and give glory to the one who makes it all possible for us. This team acts as a beacon of faith. We're an example of what can happen when you put your faith in God."

In the Watson household, religious faith was the breath and bread of everyday life. Growing up in Nanakuli, Watson followed along as his family attended church, observed regular family devotion days, and bowed their heads in daily prayer.

"I was immersed in it as a young child, and it's stayed with me," Watson said. "As an adult, I want to pass that along to my nieces and nephews, and hopefully to my own kids someday."

Watson said his faith saved him during his freshman year when Von Willebrand disorder, a rare condition similar to hemophilia, threatened to end his football career.

Watson redshirted that year, unsure if he would ever return as doctor after doctor delivered negative prognoses. As he confronted the loss of his dream, Watson said he lost sight of what he believed in.

"I thought my career was down the drain," he said. "I felt there was no hope for me and I kind of lost focus on what God had planned for me. It was all about what I wanted. But once I let him take control of my life again, he put everything back together."

With the help of a new doctor, who found a way to treat the condition with daily medication, Watson made his way back to the team and has become a rising force within the defensive unit.

Watson serves as an assistant pastor at Kahikolu Baptist Church in Wai'anae. In the Warrior locker room, it's Watson to whom teammates often turn for religious support and guidance.

It was Watson who last week rallied a dozen teammates to Hawaii Medical Center East to pray for redshirt freshman Vaughn Meatoga's mother, who was stricken with cancer. Lynette Meatoga died two days later.

"Our belief carries on to each of our lives," Watson said. "When (Meatoga's) mother passed, there were a lot of guys around to help lift him up. It was devastating for him, but he's doing better.

"There's a lot of love on this team."

DIVINE INTERVENTIONS

Like Watson, junior defensive back Desmond Thomas grew up in a Christian household.

"That was one of the reasons my mom wanted me to come here," Thomas said. "We have coaches who are Christians and believe in God. She loved that about this school. Love, belief, faith — those words characterize the whole team."

But despite his upbringing, Thomas said his religious faith had yet to blossom when he arrived on the Manoa campus. He was, in his own words, "just out there in the world doing my own thing."

And it wasn't working.

A standout safety and wide receiver at Vallejo High School in California, Thomas redshirted the 2004 season and saw action in just one game the following season. Frustrated at his lack of progress and opportunity, Thomas was considering transferring schools as he sat outside the Stan Sheriff Center one afternoon.

"And God sent somebody to talk to me — a homeless man," Thomas recalled. "He told me that great things are headed in my direction if I turn away from my evil ways and turn to God.

"It broke me," he said. "I was upset because I had always thought of myself as a player, and I wasn't playing. Then God snatched me up and I humbled myself."

Thomas put aside thoughts of transferring and eventually found his opportunity away from the offense. As a sophomore, he played all 14 games in the defensive backfield and on special teams.

This season, Thomas replaced Kaeo Monteilh as starting safety after Monteilh was lost for the season with a fractured left scapula.

Like Thomas, senior defensive back Jacob Patek would not connect the Christian values with which he was raised to a meaningful relationship with the higher power he acknowledged until he arrived in Hawai'i.

Patek grew up in Victoria, Texas, and played for Blinn Community College (Texas) for three seasons before transferring to Hawai'i.

"When I got here, I was a Christian but I was doing my own thing," Patek said. "It was tough being so far away from home and trying to battle through things."

Though embraced by his teammates and respected by his coaches for the defensive skills he possessed and the ferocity with which he applied them, Patek felt unmoored. For all of the power and determination he exhibited on the field, the displaced Texan found himself lonely and homesick in his private moments.

In retrospect, Patek said, it was the first step in kindling the religious faith that had laid dry within him.

"The Lord brought me out to this island, took me away from everything I had back at home, and broke me," Patek said. "There were times I'd break down crying and allow the Lord to work on me."

Patek said the reaffirmation of his faith allowed him to "grow into maturity," and to rein in the anger that so often festered and flared inside him.

And like so many of his teammates, Patek now interprets the good in his life as fruits of his belief. He credits prayer for curing the mysterious sores that lingered on his arm for weeks. He attributes his quick recovery from a high ankle sprain (suffered initially in a game against Boise State and re-aggravated a week later versus Washington) to "his divine power."

"No matter what happens, whether we win or lose, we give God his glory because he's blessed us with the opportunity to play the game of football, where other people might not have that opportunity."

A HIGHER POWER

Humility is a powerful and at times liberating concept for athletes, but not one that is always easily grasped.

Senior wide receiver C.J. Hawthorne may not have had a clear vision of how his collegiate career would unfold when he left the comfort and security of Mississippi for exotic Hawai'i, but he was confident that it wouldn't involve riding the pine.

At St. Martin High School in Owen Springs, he was a standout in basketball and track, and earned all-state honors in football. After a stint at Southwest Gulf Coast Community College, Hawthorn transferred to Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College and helped lead the team to a league championship in 2005.

But in Hawai'i, with talented veterans ahead of him on the offense, Hawthorne would have to make the switch to cornerback. After five so-so starts, Hawthorne was relegated to the bench.

"Back home, I was the star," Hawthorne said. "I was the man. Then I came here and for the first time in my life I had to take the bench. It was real hard. The biggest test was learning not to get jealous or bitter about things."

His adjustment off the field came no easier.

"In Mississippi, I was so comfortable and I was in the same rut of doing whatever, seeing the same guys and wanting to go out," he said. "It took getting out here and getting along by myself to realize I'm better than that. I was playing Division I football and I was poor, lonely, depressed in my room. I knew there had to be something bigger than this."

And so, like so many of his teammates, Hawthorne reached back to his Bible Belt roots in search of an answer.

Hawthorne, who now leads prayers before and after games and practices, said that with the deepening of his religious faith came a sense of humility and proportion.

"Humility is an amazing thing," he said. "Look at almost every championship team. Even if they fail to acknowledge God, you definitely see a humility and an ability to do something for one another, even when it's something you don't want to do.

"As a team, our faith has allowed us to humble ourselves and become even closer as a unit," he said.

TEAM OF DESTINY?

That word again.

Wherever Elimimian goes these days, it's there. Painted onto driveways. Shaved on heads. Spelled out in Christmas lights.

"I look around and I see 'Believe, believe,' " Elimimian said. "But what do they mean? If they believe in us, that's a start, but that's not what it's really about. When we win, it's not about us, it's about getting people saved. Our going 12-0 isn't about us, it's about the glory of God and getting people to acknowledge that God is our savior."

Salvation. Glory. Savior. Words that might chill a more secular room flow freely from Elimimian's lips because in this athletic facility, in the penultimate moment of this most stirring of seasons, it is safe to speak the language of faith.

To be sure, not every Warrior is as deeply religious as Elimimian or Hawthorne or Thomas. Yet, whatever their faith or belief or opinion, there is permeating the team a feeling that what they've achieved this season resonates beyond the obvious.

Elimimian, a measured and deliberate thinker, believes the perfect record, the Western Athletic Conference championship and the Sugar Bowl berth are means, not ends, to his God's true intention.

How else, Elimimian asks, can one account for the myriad ways in which this particular group of coaches and players found themselves together right here, right now?

"You look at all the guys that people in Hawai'i look up to — Colt, Davone (Bess), C.J., Adam Leonard — and each one has a story about how they got here," Elimimian said. "Colt had a long path from high school just to get here. Davone, too. My brother (all-WAC cornerback Abraham Elimimian) could have gone somewhere else but all the big schools dropped him when he hurt his ACL (anterior cruciate ligament). He was an instrument for me being here because if he hadn't come, I probably would not have either.

"You look at our Polynesian guys — guys like Timo Paepule, Michael Lafaele, Hercules Satele, Karl Noa, who give hope to kids in Hawai'i because they're so strong in their faith — they all have their stories, too. We all had long paths to get here. God put everything together, all these different pieces from different walks of life.

"God put us in the Sugar Bowl as the only 12-0 team to touch the nation and let people know the plan and the mercy that God has for us."

Hawthorne agrees.

"A lot of people think you can only preach from the pulpit, but there are a lot of platforms," he said. "We are each here for God to show that it's possible to love one another. It's not about being all religious, it's about loving each other."
 
http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071224/NEWS01/712240346
Report to moderator   Logged
Beach Bum
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 40739


View Profile
« Reply #47 on: January 20, 2008, 11:04:39 AM »

Attended a dinner last night in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King.  Attended by a member of Congress, several state senators, a member of the Governor's cabinet, and various people from the community of all races.  The dinner started with prayer, given by a Hawaiian pastor in both English and Hawaiian. 
Report to moderator   Logged
Beach Bum
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 40739


View Profile
« Reply #48 on: January 21, 2008, 01:25:47 PM »

I missed this because I was travelling. 

MAYOR’S ANNUAL NEW YEAR’S PRAYER SERVICE   
 
Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann, his wife, Gail, and members of the mayor’s staff and cabinet will gather Thursday evening, January 10th,  at Kawaihao Church for the Mayor’s Annual New Year’s Prayer Service.

“This will be our fourth annual prayer service,” Hannemann said, “and it’s become quite a tradition. It is a chance for people to give thanks, to pray for our city and for each other as we head into a new year.  Those who’ve attended in the past have expressed their warm appreciation for this event.”

The non-denominational service gets underway at 6:30 pm.  Several pastors and religious leaders from the local community will lead the congregation in prayer. Members of the public are cordially invited to attend. 

http://www.co.honolulu.hi.us/csd/publiccom/honnews08/newyearsprayerservice.htm
Report to moderator   Logged
Colossus_500
Getbig V
*****
Gender: Male
Posts: 4005


Psalm 139


View Profile
« Reply #49 on: January 21, 2008, 03:15:33 PM »

It's nice to know that prayer isn't suppressed everywhere.  Thanks for posting, bro!   Wink
Report to moderator   Logged
Pages: 1 [2] 3 4 ... 12   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Theme created by Egad Community. Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.16 | SMF © 2011, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!