Faith & Family Night July 26
by Alan Goforth |
Mike Sweeney was a four-time All-Star and earned tens of millions of dollars while playing for the Kansas City Royals. But like the Apostle Paul, he counts it all rubbish compared to what truly matters in life.
“Being a Major League Baseball play and earning millions of dollars can give you a sense that you are on top of the world,” he said. “But you also can be miserable. As a Christian, you can use baseball as a platform to let people know that peace and joy come only through a relationship with Jesus Christ.”
Sweeney is looking forward to attending Faith & Family Day at Kauffman Stadium. He sees it not only as challenging and entertaining for Christians but a great opportunity to share the gospel in a non-threatening environment.
“I encourage Christians to not only bring their families and youth groups but also invite their friends who don’t have a relationship with Jesus Christ,” he said.
Sweeney remains active with the Royals and in the community, even while living near San Diego with his wife, Shara; sons Michael and Donovan; and daughter, McKara. Although he left baseball before the 2011 season, he is far from retired.
“I thought retirement meant playing golf and sitting on the beach,” he said. “I can’t remember the last time I went to the beach, and I don’t even know where my golf clubs are.”
In March, Sweeney joined the Royals front office to help them reach the championship that eluded him as a player. “The only thing I was unable to accomplish during my playing days was to bring October baseball back to Kansas City,” he said. “With this new position, my goal is do as much as I can to help the Royals get back to being one of the prized organizations in baseball, as it was in the 1980s.”
Sweeney’s other passion is conducting Catholic Baseball Camps for youth in San Diego, Seattle and Kansas City. In the past, instructors have included such notable former players as George Brett, Trevor Hoffman and Brian Holman. The local event will be held July 28-30 at Mid-America Sports Complex in Shawnee. (For more information, visit http://abcsportscamps.com/sdcatholicbaseballcamp.
“Although we have Catholic in our name,” he said, “about 40 percent of the kids are from evangelical backgrounds, and another 10 percent have no church background.”
Sweeney hopes to see many old friends and make new ones when he returns to Kauffman Stadium. Most of all, he wants to see people saved.
“As Christians, our goal should be to bring as many people as possible to heaven, starting first with our family members and friends,” he said. “An invitation to the K for Faith and Family Night will lead to an invitation to eternal life.”
For more information see this issue of Metro Voice or visit: Royals.com/faithandfamily