On Oct. 24, Fellowship of Christian Athletes hosted their first ever Faith First event with guest speakers Ryan Young and Dr. David Fraze.
Attendees listened to Young and Fraze speak about their religious experiences at the Sid Richardson Gym.
Young, a former offensive tackle for the Dallas Cowboys, Houston Texas, and New York Jets, spoke to a packed gym of both student-athletes and non-student-athletes about the importance of staying true to oneself with their faith.
“I once thought that I could be a Christian in the church but that when I wasn’t in church, I didn’t have to follow all of the rules,” Young said of his own life experiences. “But that isn’t the case.”
Fraze, manager of DFW’s Character Coaches program for FCA, used an apple and an orange to describe students who were not always truthful about their faith.
“You can’t be an apple,” said Fraze holding up his right hand with an apple, “and tell people you’re an orange,” holding the orange up.
Fellowship of Christian Athletes, or FCA, is an interdenominational Christian sports ministry to see the world impacted for Jesus Christ through the influence of coaches and athletes, according to Priscilla Morgan, women’s head volleyball coach and FCA coach sponsor.
“The biggest part is the ‘F’ in FCA,” Morgan said. “It’s a place for people to come together, talk about their struggles that they’re dealing with as an athlete, as a student, and just come and find that kindred spirit through someone else and to help each other through that time in their lives when they’re here in college.”
Students do not have to be student–athletes or Christians to attend FCA; in fact, everyone is welcome, said FCA president and senior exercise science major Jacey Patton.
“A lot of people think FCA is only for student–athletes but we actually love having non-student-athletes come to our Tuesday night meetings,” Patton said.
Wesleyan students from all types of religious backgrounds were present for the Faith First event.
Athletes from different Wesleyan sports programs attended the event; student–athletes from the track and cross country team, the softball team, the women’s volleyball team, the football team, men’s and women’s tennis, and baseball were all present in the stands.
After the presentation by the guest speakers, students broke off into groups and discuss questions regarding Christianity with student leaders Jacey Patton, Lauren Wernet, Jaci Trotter, and Jonathan Swiatocha.
For some students, FCA is a community to reach out to when some things aren’t going the right way.
For sophomore psychology major Iyanna Brown, even though the Faith First event was her first Texas Wesleyan FCA meeting, she knew she would be returning next week.
“Seeing other athletes in the room who strive for the same thing I do was very encouraging,” Brown said. “I left there feeling like I wasn’t alone and that we could start a movement.”
FCA meets every Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. in the Carter Conference Room.