Fellowship of Christian Athletes Reaching Professional Coaches and Athletes Through Dedicated Chaplains
Guiding Players Is Less Than Wins and Losses and More About Relationships
January 9, 2020
KANSAS CITY, Mo.—With the NFL playoffs underway and the NBA season in full swing, coaches and players are feeling the pressure that professional sports can bring.
So how do NFL and NBA stars stay grounded? Many rely on their faith, and team chaplains can play a significant role in helping them stay focused on Christ.
Over many seasons, Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA, www.fca.org) staff and volunteers have served as chaplains, or “character coaches,” for professional teams. For the players and coaches who have built careers in sports, the season is much more than wins and losses. It can also be about injury, family time, their future in the sports world and even finances.
“Professional coaches and athletes have enormously stressful jobs, as they deal with the immense pressure of the game,” said FCA President and CEO Shane Williamson. “We know that only Christ can bring peace to the most intense of situations, which is why we are honored when Fellowship of Christian Athletes staff have the opportunity to volunteer as chaplains at the top levels of professional sports. Besides the NFL and NBA, our staff and volunteers work with players in the WNBA, in men’s and women’s professional soccer, and with many other professional athletes as mentors and character coaches. FCA is honored to partner in ministering to professional athletes and their families alongside two other outstanding missions: Pro Athletes Outreach and Athletes in Action. God never wanted us to do life alone, and that goes double for living out our faith in the highly competitive field of professional sports.”
Dexter Davis is a dedicated team member with FCA in Atlanta and serves as the team chaplain for the Atlanta Falcons. He said that serving and ministering to NFL players is an honor he does not take for granted. Serving as a chaplain is his opportunity to share God’s call for his life with each player and their support systems, whether it be their wives, girlfriends, fiancées or parents.
“I feel that I am honoring God’s call for me each time I get to listen, speak and participate with NFL players,” Davis said. “My wife, LaShea, and I also appreciate sharing our deepest challenges and our highlights with any of the players.
“As I counsel and mentor NFL players from different teams, traveling on missions with them to countries like Africa and Brazil and serving in their local communities, I am doubly appreciative serving the Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn, staff and team,” he added.
Davis said he is doing Kingdom work through FCA with “No Limits”—and loving it, as he is able to honor God and help create true CHAMPIONS: Christians Having Ample Maximum Power Inside Outside and Nationwide. LaShea is also on staff with FCA as a Metro Director.
Kevin Harvey, Area Director for South Jersey FCA, has served for 19 years as the team chaplain for the Philadelphia 76ers.
“Being able to disciple, evangelize and mentor NBA players and coaches is a blessing because very few people on the planet have the reach of impact that players in the NBA have,” Harvey said. “The fact that God chose me to be one of 30 people in the world to be a voice to challenge and encourage them to surrender their life to Christ and live for Him is extremely humbling.
“Without a doubt,” he continued, “a lot of athletes have grown in Christ because FCA has been an outlet for them to share their faith with others. A big part of becoming a disciple is sharing what God is doing in your life with others.”
Read more about Fellowship of Christian Athletes here, visit FCA’s website at www.fca.org, its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/fcafans or its Twitter feed @fcanews.
To interview a Fellowship of Christian Athletes representative, contact Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, Patrick Benner, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, or Deborah Hamilton, ext. 102.