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Thread: Christians in skating

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    In Love with Ice Dance! swizzletwizzle's Avatar
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    Christians in skating

    As a Christian, I like to write famous Christians and encourage them. Which figure skaters are known to be Christians?

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    Depends on how you define "Christian". Michelle Kwan is extremely quiet; based on some quotes regarding her family's Christmas celebrations, I assume that she is a Christian of some type. Paul Wylie is what is usually termed an "evangelical" or "born again" Christian. Tim Goebel is Catholic; he prays before each skate. Tara is also Catholic. Don't know about any others.

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    Da' Spellin' Homegirl Grgranny's Avatar
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    I am thinking Michelle is some kind of Buddhist or something like that. I know she usually wears a pendant from her grandmother that is some kind of oriental religion. I could be wrong but I'm fairly certain. You really don't hear much about their religion. Which is understandable since they are judged so much on whatever they do.

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    I thought that Michelle's necklace was a Chinese dragon, which is a "good luck" symbol, rather than a religious symbol.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grgranny
    I am thinking Michelle is some kind of Buddhist or something like that. I know she usually wears a pendant from her grandmother that is some kind of oriental religion. I could be wrong but I'm fairly certain. You really don't hear much about their religion. Which is understandable since they are judged so much on whatever they do.
    The pendant is from her grandmother who, I believe, still resides in China. Entirely speculative, but sometimes immigrants don't keep the native religion through the second generation (as Michelle is).

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    In one of her fluff pieces on TV, Michelle told about how thrilled she was one year to win a Christmas tree in some kind of contest at school. Her family couldn't afford one that year, because all their money went for skating lessons for her and Karen.

    She has also expressed admiration for the Dalai Lama as a person of great serenity.

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Bebe Liang is a devout Christian. She is an accomplished pianist and, I believe, plays and sings for her church choir.

    Naomi Nari Nam and her family are very religious, I believe (Christians).

    Also Ryan Jahnke. He and his wife teach Sunday school.

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    Minusaramadad from Arctaroon John King's Avatar
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    I don't wish to sound nasty,but.....

    In 1998,on the eve of her 'comeback',Tonya Harding said she had found God.Then came the hubcap incident........

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    Forum translator Ptichka's Avatar
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    Katya Gordeeva says that Paul Wylie is very religious.

    Plushenko is a religious Orthodox.

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    Christian?

    Christian as in faith, hope and charity and giving prayerful consideration to life? Sasha and Sarah/Emily are Jewish aren't they? After years of this lifestyle, they would probably meet the above criteria.

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    Gliding Along dlkksk8fan's Avatar
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    Janet Lynn and JoJo Starbuck.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lisadotdash
    Christian as in faith, hope and charity and giving prayerful consideration to life? Sasha and Sarah/Emily are Jewish aren't they? After years of this lifestyle, they would probably meet the above criteria.

    No offense, but I find the thread strange. Most people in this country identify themselves as some kind of Christians. Most who are religious, are private about their faith and I doubt they need/want any "encouragement". Why bother??

    As far as the quote above, what kind of lifestyle do you refer to??? Judaism is a FAITH, not a lifestyle. It can not meet the Christian criteria on faith for obvious reasons. Charity is a big part of Judaism (you have to give at lest 10% of your annual income to those in need). Jewish consideration to life differs somewhat from Christian. If mothers health is in danger, then an abortion is allowed (if you are deeply observant). Devout Christians would not allow it.

    As far as the Xmas tree, just b/c you have it does not mean you are Christian. I know lots of Indian folks who are Hindu but have the tree. It's not really a religious symbol. Same goes for agnostic/atheists - they have it, it's just a tree. So I wouldn't think that Michelle is Christian just b/c she was excited about the tree (but then again, I wouldn't care). I would also disagree about 2nd or 3rd generation loosing their parents religion. They maybe less devout but they don't tend to embrace other religions. Koreans and Vietnameese folks were already practicing Christians when they moved to US, they didn't convert.

    Anyways, don't mean to offend anyone, but when I see threads like that, I just scratch my head.

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    Gadfly and Bon Vivant Mafke's Avatar
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    Re: Kwan's faith and religion in China

    I don't know what (if any) faith Kwan adheres to (entirely her own private business and nothing to do with her skating). And, in terms of language and culture she's American, not Chinese.

    But I thought it might be interesting to note that Chinese are considered (by the people that study such things) as among the least religiously inclined people on earth. Some of the 'religions' of China aren't so much religions at all (since there's no supernatural element) but rather ethical philosophies which tend toward the practical and everyday rather than spiritual or universal. Traditionally, most Chinese people didn't belong to a single religion (though obviously some did/do). But for the majority, different religions were resources (each one good for something else) that one used as needed/appropriate. It wasn't unusual in pre-communist China for local shrines to incorporate Christian imagery (without displacing the Buddhist or Hindu or whatever imagery).

    Also, Buddhists in general often incorporate elements of other religions into their own practices (coexistence with Shinto in Japan). I knew a (non-Chinese) Buddhist woman who was an accomplished professional in her field and she had incorporated a lot of catholicism (esp Mary) in her own version of Buddhism. Her house had a Buddhist shrine acording to her traditions, but also a second unofficial shrine with Jesus and Mary and she often visited catholic cathedrals and occasionally mass. She found no conflict in any of this.
    Just thought I'd share.

  14. #14
    Kwan's vodka dealer VIETgrlTerifa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by attyfan
    Depends on how you define "Christian". Michelle Kwan is extremely quiet; based on some quotes regarding her family's Christmas celebrations, I assume that she is a Christian of some type. Paul Wylie is what is usually termed an "evangelical" or "born again" Christian. Tim Goebel is Catholic; he prays before each skate. Tara is also Catholic. Don't know about any others.
    Although it doesn't really prove anything, but in the latest InStyle Magazine, Kwan talks about decorating her house and the article mentions a bronzed big-bellied Buddha statue, which Kwan calls her "lucky Buddha" and there is a tall carving of Kuan Yin, goddess of compassion. Kwan said the people who lived in the house before her owned the Kuan Yin carving, so Kwan feels like the carving is the mascot of the house and said that the statue protects her.

    Kwan has also said in the past that she looks up to the Dalai Lama the most out of anyone in the world.

    But again, that doesn't really mean anything. You can believe in aspects or ideaology of a certain religion but don't have to actually be a member of it. For many people, spirituality doesn't always mean belonging to a specific religion.

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    I feel uncomfortable about this topic. Majority of people in this country were brought up as Christians (other religions are in the minority), so it is not unusual to see many US skaters with Christian beliefs. With the number of immigrants increasing you see some other religions in the country. Why should that be a factor for a skater? I see religious practice as something personal/private and I don't feel comfortable discussing those practices for skaters. Some eastern religions are very tolerant of other religions, and some practices are even inclusive/universal, so it does not really matter what label one chooses (or no label). Many non-Christians celebrate Christmas, and have a Christmas tree, so that alone would not be a criterion to determine one's religion (I only mentioned this because it was mentioned by someone).

    Vash

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