Aaron Rodgers on Tim Tebow religion controversy: ‘I believe in letting my actions speak about the kind of character I have’
Nov 30, 2011, 12:15 PM EST
I’m assuming that there are many people who don’t know that Aaron Rodgers is a devout Christian. I’m assuming that because the Packers QB doesn’t talk about it much, doesn’t point to the sky after TD passes, and there isn’t a web site devoted to his prayer technique. So what does he think about the recent controversy over Tim Tebow wearing his religious beliefs on his sleeve? Rodgers, on his weekly ESPN Milwaukee radio segment with Jason Wilde on Tuesday:
“Well I started playing before Tim, so these are things I’ve thought about for a long time, and I think one thing that I try to look at when I was a younger player, and I mean, in high school, junior college, and Division one, I was always interested in seeing how guys talked in their interviews, talked about their faith, or didn’t talk about their faith. And then the reactions. I know Bob Costas at one point was critical about a player thanking Jesus Christ after a win, questioning what would happen if that player had lost, or do you really think God cares about winning and losing.
“I feel like my stance and my desire has always been to follow a quote from St. Francis of Assisi, who said, ‘Preach the gospel at all times. If necessary, use words.’ So basically, I’m not an over-the-top, or an in-your-face kind of guy with my faith. I would rather people have questions about why I act the way I act, whether they view it as positive or not, and ask questions, and then given an opportunity at some point, then you can talk about your faith a little bit. I firmly believe, just personally, what works for me, and what I enjoy doing is letting my actions speak about the kind of character that I want to have, and following that quote from St. Francis.”
So put Rodgers in the camp, I guess, that says Tebow should probably tone down all the God talk.
The interesting things about those quotes is that the part about St. Francis is almost word for word the same quote he gave in this Athletes in Action article in Oct., 2010:
“When it comes to talking to others about his faith, Rodgers is not one who preaches or pushes his faith on others. “I like the saying from St. Francis of Assisi, ‘Preach the gospel at all times, if necessary use words.’ I try to live my life in a way that reflects my faith in the Lord,” Rodgers says. “I don’t like to get in peoples’ faces. The best way for me is: Let your actions talk about your beliefs, start a relationship with others, then finally there is a chance for questions.”
According to the Athletes In Action piece, Rodgers decided to “dedicate his life to living for Christ” when he was 16.
“[Church youth group leader] Matt Hock was the first person who showed me how much fun and how cool it can be to be a Christian,” Rodgers says. Through “Young Life” Rogers got involved in service mission projects and camp experiences, and built relationships that encouraged his and others’ Christian faith to grow. He went on to be involved with Athletes in Action during his two years at the University of California, Berkeley.
“I grew up knowing what a stable relationship was by my parents’ example and how it centered on Christ,” Rodgers says, “When our family had its ups and downs, I knew my parents relied on God for everything and He always got us through those rough spots.”
And while we’re on the subject of God and the devil and such, here’s Rodgers on the Lions’ Kyle Vanden Bosch:
“I mean, he’s crazy on the field. And if you watch the game, you see he wears those red contacts. He has a crazy motor. He wears red contacts on game day, I think he enjoys that perception that he’s a little bit off.”
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