One of our St. Andrew parishioners drew a large crowd of men, younger and older, to the annual Holy Name Society Prayer Breakfast – Butch Jones, head coach of the University of Cincinnati Bearcats football team.
Coach Jones spoke with energy and faith (and with examples) about how a “spiritual component” has first place in his football program. Most movingly, Coach told the crowd of 175 in the parish gymnasium about his respect for his own father and his experience of his father’s dying. He recounted how, as a teenager, his goal was to protect the good name and the reputation of his father, who was the police chief in their hometown. He ordered his life and made his decisions about what he would do and what he would not do, so as not to publicly embarrass his father. This grew later into his advice to his players, “Do everything you can to protect your good name and your reputation.” Coach Jones had words about discipline, often addressing fathers, and just as often speaking directly to the young men who were present, including two of his sons. He had words about character: “Character is how you act when no one else is watching.”
Toward the end of his talk, he spoke about some advice a former player gave to his team. Coach said he was surprised when he heard it himself. The player, returning to the college locker room that he had left years before, gave the team what he said was the “secret” to living life. “The secret to life,” the player said (and the Coach repeated to us), “is serving.”
Here at St. Andrew we were well served on Sunday by our faithful parishioner, Coach Butch Jones.