Minister's Study

Ministering, writing, and wrestling in a land flowing with sweet tea and deep-fried food

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Border Wars wrestlin tourney and an open door for Paul

October 19th, 2005

A qualifier tournament was held Saturday at Farrell for the Border Wars national tournament in Michigan. Big event -- over 200 wrestlers in the different age groups, with representatives from NJ, Long Island, and NYC. It turns out that at least three of the wrestlers I have worked with at different schools won their weight for their age group (and quite a few others qualified for the national event by placing in the top four). Ben Villaret won in the 11-12 year old age group; he was one of the intermediate school wrestlers I worked with last year. Joe Cipriano of Farrell won his weight division over tough competition with the high school wrestlers. And Correy Ranno of Tottenville won his weight (He also won his weight at a pretty tough tournament in FL a week or two ago). Correy and I wrestle together whenever I get the chance; he's about a weight division above me, and for a highschool student, he's ridiculously strong. He pretty much manhandles any of the highschool kids who work in with him, so it's good for both of us to wrestle each other. Keeps me on my toes, to say the least, and hopefully he'll begin to realize that there will always be someone who can handle his power -- he needs to rely on good technique. It's the same lesson I'm working on teaching myself. Other qualifiers that I've spent a fair amount of time with include Fortuna, Henderson, and Benigno (and several other of the Farrell guys).

Paul Funchess went to practice with me last night. He hasn't wrestled in many years, but he hangs out while I wrestle and talks to other wrestlers and parents. When we got on the train to practice last night, a Farrell wrestler got on with us. Another wrestler he knew from another local high school joined us also. We struck up a conversation with him, and over the course of it, he found that I was a pastor. He asked if we were those "born-again" kind of people, and of course I affirmed that we are. Apparently he has a good friend who is also born again. It turned out that he is a Jew, with a family that takes Judaism pretty seriously. Paul and I were talking to him about that, when he popped out a question for Paul. "Can you explain this whole born again thing to me? My friend has talked about it, but I never really understood what he meant." Wow, talk about an open door. Paul spent the next few minutes before practice going through the plan of salvation with him, and although he didn't make a decision, he thanked Paul for explaining it to him. On the way back, we were also able to have a great conversation with the original Farrell wrestler (a good friend of Henderson's), who happens to live just a few blocks from the church.


Post a Comment

<< Home

eXTReMe Tracker