By Zach Vogel
October 24, 2017
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft organized a trip earlier this year in which 18 NFL Hall of Famers traveled to the Holy Land in Israel on a spiritual journey.
Some of the game’s all-time greats in Jim Brown, Joe Montana, Roger Staubach, Joe Greene, Cris Carter, Andre Green, John Stallworth, Eric Dickerson, Marshall Faulk, Dave Casper, Jerome Bettis, Ron Yary, Lem Barney, Willie Lanier, Mike Singletary, Andre Trippett and Bruce Smith all made the trip.
The trip to Israel was highlighted by some of the players being baptized in the Jordan River, the same river that Jesus was baptized in, according to the Bible.
According to Sports Spectrum, the baptisms were helped along by former Arizona Cardinals star Aeneas Williams. Williams serves as a pastor at The Spirit Church in Ferguson, Missouri.
“Baptism is an outward sign of what has already happened on the inside of us,” Williams said. “Getting in the water, literally, your sins have been washed away and when you come up, it is symbolically a new person. The old person has been buried. We rejoice in the Lord. Hallelujah.”
“Having them being baptized, it’s the greatest thing in their life,” Kraft told NFL Films reporter Katie Nolan. “The people here impact America and can be positive role models, so if they’re happy and they’re spiritual and doing good things, I mean, they’re great guys.”
The players baptized included Steelers legends “Mean” Joe Greene and Jerome Bettis, Vikings legend Cris Carter, and Bills legends Bruce Smith and Andre Reed.
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“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field.
When a man found it, he hid it again,
and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.”
(Matthew 13:44, NIV)