Q: Why did you want to help write this textbook?
A: Four years ago, when I was at Columbia International University, I put in a proposal to our publisher Human Kinetics. I thought this would be a winning textbook to have because there are 200 Christian universities and Bible colleges in America, and sports-ministry-related missions trips are very popular. I have a number of friends who are in full-time sports ministry. And in talking with them, I posed the question, “When you retire, where’s all your knowledge going? We ought to put a book together. And we ought to do it based on the Scriptures and stay true to the mission of the gospel.”
Q: Have you been involved in sports ministry?
A: Yes I have, but I am the least of the sports ministers in this textbook. One of my co-authors, Bill Galipault (who teaches adjunct at TMU), typified my sports ministry most accurately as incarnational ministry. My work has been more in the field as a head soccer coach and athletic director, working with pro soccer teams, and just lifting Christ up and talking about the gospel as the opportunities present themselves.
Q: How have you seen God use you in this field?
A: In life, especially in pro sports, things can get messy. Coaches and athletes sometimes marry their sports and lose their families in the process. Things fall apart. One such coach came to me once and said, “You gotta help me, man. I’m on my third marriage and about to lose that. I’m just a mess.” On the soccer field, this coach was highly successful. Outside the soccer field, not so much, by his own admission. We were able to talk about the gospel, and he came to the Lord and placed his faith in Jesus Christ.
Q: What are some core takeaways from the sections you wrote in the textbook?
A: One of the biggest takeaways is the ability to do relationships. A lot of people say, “Well, is sports your ministry?” Yes, you could make that argument. But I actually view it as the place I’m privileged to do relationships in a sport or an event, which often results in ministry and gospel-sharing. It can be right here on campus; it can be in the neighborhood; it can be Southern California, the U.S., or anywhere in the world. This sports ministry book tries to capture everything that a college student would need to consider, either when going on a sports ministry trip or actually doing a sports ministry once they graduate.
Q: What are your hopes for teaching sports ministry at TMU?
A: When people think about the intersection of sports and faith, we want them to think of The Master’s University and our commitment to the Scriptures and to Jesus Christ. The more people we can inspire to get out there and do sports ministry, the better. Ultimately, we’re praying that the Lord will use this sports ministry textbook and the larger sport management major here at TMU for His glory.
The textbook is available for purchase at bookshop.org.
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