Monthly Archives: September 2015

Clint Hurdle’s Faith in Christ

“Ask Jesus to take control,” Hurdle urged the crowd as he clutched his black leather Coach’s Bible. “I have to do it every day.” J. C. Derrick

“Sometimes in the Major League Baseball world and the politically correct world we live in we’re told we can’t do that [share our Christian faith], and that’s definitely not the case with the [Pittsburgh] Pirates.” Ibid

Pirates revival

SPORTS | Manager Clint Hurdle leads his team both on and off the diamond

By World magazine, Issue: “Banned parenthood,” Sept. 19, 2015
Pirates at Orioles June 14, 2012

Pirates at Orioles June 14, 2012

PITTSBURGH, Pa.—The Pittsburgh Pirates shut out the San Francisco Giants, 4-0, on a recent night at PNC Park, but some 10,000 fans didn’t leave at the end of the game. About 45 minutes after the last pitch, several players and coaches dressed in street clothes made their way from the third base dugout to where 24 black Pirates folding chairs sat near the first base line.

“I am a fallen man,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle, 58, announced as he began pacing back and forth between his seated players and the first base dugout. Hurdle, wearing shorts and a Hawaiian shirt, told the assembled fans—a few dressed in Giants garb—about his two failed marriages and how he lived for himself for 40 years before putting his faith in Christ.

“Ask Jesus to take control,” Hurdle urged the crowd as he clutched his black leather Coach’s Bible. “I have to do it every day.”

Hurdle’s mini-sermon came at the Pirates’ third annual Faith Night at PNC Park in the shadow of downtown Pittsburgh. Baseball faith nights aren’t new, but they often entail a Christian rock band performance, a cameo by a Christian player, and gimmicks and giveaways to get people in the stands.

Pittsburgh’s event was different: It involved two coaches and 10 players (40 percent of the active roster), was based on content, not entertainment, and took place after the game. None of the fans seemed to mind staying at the ballpark past 11:30 p.m. on a work or school night.

Pittsburgh’s Faith Night began in 2013 after Hurdle and Pirates chaplain Brad Henderson hatched the idea in a brainstorming session. That first year about 2,500 fans gathered behind the first base dugout to hear a handful of players. In 2014 the crowd grew down the right field line. This year, fans started at the third base dugout, filled the entire lower level seating bowl on the right side of the field, and stretched into the right field seats.

“It’s significant to see the power of the spoken word and of the relationship with Jesus, and how many people are attracted to it,” Hurdle told me after the event.

Henderson, in his 13th season as the Pirates’ chaplain, said the organization has been very supportive of the chapel program, and he’s seen players come to faith in Christ through it. He said about 15 players regularly attend, which he called the strongest group he’s ever had.

Hurdle’s “love for Christ has infiltrated the organization,” Henderson told me. He said because the manager is so open with his faith, it has allowed others in the organization to do the same: “Sometimes in the Major League Baseball world and the politically correct world we live in we’re told we can’t do that, and that’s definitely not the case with the Pirates.”

Pittsburgh’s spiritual resurgence has coincided with a resurgence on the field: The Pirates set a big league record with 20 straight losing seasons from 1994 to 2012, but as of early September, they held the third-best record in baseball en route to their third straight playoff appearance.

AIDS: 2015/6

Larry_Kramer_2010_-_David_Shankbone

Larry Kramer

“Males committed shameless acts with males and received in their own persons the appropriate penalty for their perversion. And because they did not think it worthwhile to have God in their knowledge, God delivered them over to a worthless mind to do what is morally wrong.” Paul, Romans 1:27, 28

“HIV accounts for more deaths [per year] than gun homicides or drunk driving: 13,712 HIV; 11,208 guns; 10,076 alcohol.” Sophia Lee

Editor’s Note: The reason why the public is left in the dark over AIDS is because homosexuality [the main culprit] is now taught in American elementary schools as something “special.” No American school is allowed to teach its students the “dark” side of the homosexual lifestyle. Keep in mind the three amigos of homosexuality in the U.S. are: Larry Kramer, Frank Kameny, and Kevin Jennings. President Obama has honored all three. Following are a few observations relating to Kramer—an AIDS carrier and defender of pederasty.

“Larry Kramer became nationally known for his dark, controversial 1978 novel about gay life in America, entitled, quite bluntly, Faggots. Adding to his stature was his groundbreaking and award-winning play on AIDS, Normal Heart.

“Kramer’s own connection with Yale [University] dates back to 1953, when as a freshman in October, 1953, he tried to kill himself, thinking he was the only gay student there.

“Unfortunately, the LGBQT emphasis at Yale is not unique these days. In fact, scores of colleges in America now have gay, lesbian, or queer study programs—or, at the least, LGBQT student centers—while it is increasingly common for schools to have a Gay and Lesbian Bill of Rights or the like. Many campuses even designate April as ‘Gaypril,’ devoting the whole month to highlighting gay issues and flying the gay flag all thirty days.

“I [Kramer] have recently gone through my diaries of the worst of the [AIDS] plague years. I saw day after day a notation of another friend’s death. I listed all the ones I’d slept with. There were a couple hundred…Have you ever wondered how many men you killed? I know I murdered some of them. I just know.” Michael Brown, A Queer Thing Happened to America, p. 133f

Editor’s Note: Today Larry Kramer is considered a hero among the intellectual elite with Yale University leading the charge. And before I forget on June 29, 2009 President Barack Obama welcomed 300 gay activists to the White House to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall riots. During his address he “belittled those who ‘still hold fast to worn arguments and old attitudes’ (like the notion that homosexual practice is wrong according to the Bible, or the idea that marriage is the union of a man and woman). Obama singled out Frank Kameny for special praise, the same Kameny who stated that the God of the Bible is ‘a sinful homophobic bigot who needs to repent.’ (See Brown, p. 18, 19)

WDDD

“That’s why a better bracelet formulation might be WDDD: What Did Daniel Do?” Marvin Olasky

“Amazingly, Daniel of the Bible for at least 66 years, from 605 to 539 B.C., was a Babylonian public servant who really did try to serve a strange [pagan] public while remaining true to God. He faced down two death threats and saw his friends survive a third.” Ibid

Dare to be a Daniel?

CULTURE | We can learn from the great exile’s legacy as we face an uncertain future

daniel_6_1_28WWJD bracelets were useful in their time and could still be helpful now, but “What would Jesus do?” ran into the problem of all hypotheticals: On those political issues that Jesus left to the Caesars and would-be Caesars, we’d have to guess.

That’s why a better bracelet formulation might be WDDD: What did Daniel do? Amazingly, Daniel of the Bible for at least 66 years, from 605 to 539 B.C., was a Babylonian public servant who really did try to serve a strange public while remaining true to God. He faced down two death threats and saw his friends survive a third.

I’d like to write about Daniel in several columns, beginning this month when we’re running some articles about education. After all, Chapter 1 of Daniel’s memoir shows his traumatic entry to nonbiblical higher education: Militants from an enemy land pulled Daniel from his hometown, Jerusalem, and forcibly enrolled him in a three-year immersion program in Babylonian culture and language.   Continue reading