March 20, 2008

Pain on the Journey to WTA Tennis Fame?

Posted in Africa Tennis, Athletes in Action Tennis, ATP Tennis, Benin City Tennis, Billy Graham, Christian Discipleship, Christian Tennis Mission Trips, Christian Tennis Player, Demon Possessed, Faith, Hope, ICTA Women's Christian Pro Tennis Team, International Christian Tennis Association, Junior Tennis, Leadership, melody snelen, Nigeria Tennis, scott paschal, Sex Slave Trade, Sexual Abuse Tennis, Tennis Devotionals, Tennis Ministry, Tennis Missionary, USPTA, USTA, WTA Tennis tagged , , , , , , at 11:12 pm by Scott Paschal

What do you personally do when you see someone being harmed illegally?

Let’s say you see someone totally defenseless being hurt… maybe a baby in a locked car with the windows up on a hot summer day..dscf3959.jpg. and the car’s engine is off. What would you do? Be honest.

(Anastasia Kharchenko (WTA) and “Lucy.” Harmed by tennis coaches. Both now have voice!)

Would you walk by and pretend you saw nothing? Would you call the police or emergency rescue for help? Would you bash in a window and allow the heat to escape? Be honest.

Most decent people would want to help.

But, what about those people who refuse to help. Sicker still, what about those people who receive some sort of enjoyment from seeing others hurt. And, what if the people who refuse to help or the people who gain enjoyment from the pain of others are in positions of power?

Unfortunately, this type of sickness is happening all over the global tennis industry. I know because over the last nearly decade I’ve compiled a list of graphic abuses forced on under age children in tennis by Satanists, homosexual and heterosexual pedophiles, famous tennis coaches, atheists, tennis academy owners, pro tennis players….

In tennis, there are people who are in difficult situations worldwide. You’ve often heard me speak up about under age kids being harmed.

You’ve heard my opinions and you’ve seen me back up my words with action. Change is happening in tennis… as you can plainly see from my last blog entry about how the WTA is now finally demanding criminal background checks on all WTA player coaches…

… which won’t even come close to fixing everything and isn’t nearly everything I wanted, but it is a start and does send a global message throughout women’s sports….

You’ve seen me screaming from the rooftops and soapboxes in places worldwide. Honestly, though, who gives a rip what I say. I’m obviously a nobody. I’m just one voice in millions of tennis voices. In no way am I THE authority on anything… nor is my opinion greater than yours.

The real question is, what does the Bible say?

What does the Bible teach us about those who are helpless. Has God given us any clues as to how He wants us to protect and preserve the rights of the abused.

Let’s take a look…

” The people who lived there were powerless; they were frightened and shunned. They were like grass in a field or weeds growing on a roof when the hot east wind blasts them.” Isaiah 37:27 (TEV)

nigeria-trip1-031.jpgHow do we recognize the face of a powerless person?

Again, let’s look to the Bible… and notice the guy from Cyrene…

“The soldiers led Jesus away, and as they were going, they met a man from Cyrene named Simon, who was coming into the city from the country. They seized him, put the cross on him, and made him carry it behind Jesus.” Luke 23:26 (TEV)

(Melody Snelen being cheered up by local Nigerian youth in Benin City after losing 2 hr match to eventual Finalist, Nowack. All here are faces of the abused. Melody now has voice!)

Back in Jesus’ day, people from Cyrene most likely had black skin, thus were basically considered less than equals to the locals. Notice the guards took Simon because they could see he was not local (of their status)!

1. The powerless are many times considered second class citizens

“… a man from Cyrene who was coming into the city from the country.”

2. The powerless many times have no one to protect them.

“… and they seized him…”

3. The powerless feel they are trapped and have no way of escape.

“…put the cross on him and made him carry it…”

Who are the powerless around us?

“Jesus said, ‘I was hungry and you fed me, I was thirsty and you gave me a drink, I was shivering and you gave me clothes, I was sick and you stopped to visit, I was in prison and you came to see me.’ ” Mathew 25: 35-36 (MSG)

1. Many children around the world… born and the unborn.

“But if you give these children a hard time, bullying or taking advantage of their simple trust, you’ll soon wish you hadn’t. You’d be better off dropped in the middle of a lake with a millstone around your neck.” Mathew 18:6 (MSG)

“Before I shaped you in the womb, I knew all about you. Before you saw the light of day, I had holy plans for you.” Jeremiah 1:5 (MSG)

2. Those discriminated against… by minority, race, social status.

“Don’t look down on me because of my skin color…” Song of Solomon 1:6 (TEV)

“You then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat.” Romans 14:10 (NIV)

3. Those that are trapped due to illness, low income, or abandonment.nigeria-trip1-406.jpg

“Destruction is certain for those who issue unfair laws. They deprive the poor, the widows, and the orphans of justice. Yes, the rob widows and fatherless children!” Isaiah 10:1-2 (NLT)

(Rach and Mel w/ local physically handicapped Nigerians trying to stay alive in 3rd world conditions)

” ‘At that time I will put you on trial. I will speak against those who cheat employees of their wages, oppress widows and orphans, or who deprive the aliens living among you of justice, for these people do not fear me,’ says the Lord Almighty.” Malachi 3:5 (NLT)

Bringing hope to the powerless.

“God deliberately chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And He chose those who are powerless to shame those who are powerful.” 1 Corinthians 1:27 (NLT)

1. Reaching out to the powerless with compassion.

“You insult your maker when you exploit the powerless; when you’re kind to the poor, you honor God.” Proverbs 14:31 (MSG)

nigeria-trip1-011.jpg“When I am with those who are oppressed, I share their oppression so that I might bring them to Christ.” 1 Corinthians 9:22 (NLT)

(Ana w/ Nigerian youth after winning qualifier match for the first of two ITF Pro tournaments she won in Benin City)

2. Speak out for the powerless with conviction.

“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those who are perishing. Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice.” Proverbs 31:8-9 (NLT)

3. Standing up for the powerless with courage.

“Your job is to stand up for the powerless, and to prosecute all those who exploit them.” Psalms 82:4 (MSG)

Truth to stand on…

There is only one person who can truly set people free.

“You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for you and me.” Romans 5:6 (NIV)

The challenge: Will we be willing to respond to those God places before us?

God bless,

Scott Paschal

International Christian Tennis Association



  1. Amy said,


    I have often wondered why it seems to be human nature to hope someone else will do something about something….or worse, why when the majority of the people feel the same way about some injustice, why they don’t immediately band together to make a difference in strength.

    Hopefully those leaders within the tennis industry with the power to make a difference, or even a caring and motivated majority within the tennis industry may finally start standing together, and stop turning a blind eye to the abuses being perpetrated upon young tennis players such as you and the ICTA ministry are helping to bring to light.

    Tennis is fun and a great way to stay healthy at any age, is physically and mentally challenging for athletes, and an exciting sport to watch. I hope that tennis fans, parents, coaches and leaders of tennis organizations world wide will answer your call and want to keep tennis the wonderful sport that it can be for everyone participating, and not let anyone invade the sport to take advantage of underage players, and do all possible to ensure their safety.

    I pray for the youth that are being abused, and I am thankful that someone is finally having the courage to expose what is really going on behind the scenes all too often in this golden industry.


  2. plugginaway4him said,

    thanks for your comment, amy.

    courage is a difficult thing for many people because to have courage a person has to have fear. overcoming fear is courage.

    many people spend their entire lives avoiding fear. few have the ability to stand up for change, and when they do… persecution comes. then the true test of courage begins….

    jesus promised persecution will come for all who believe in Him.

    i guess, whether standing up for jesus or standing up for the rights of the powerless, courage is needed in the face of persecution.

    if you could speak to the uspta, united states professional tennis association, which is the largest pro-certification organization in the world, what would you like to see them change?

    do you feel enough safeguards are in place and education is being done to bring safety to under age kids in tennis? what about the global tennis industry where kids are taught eating disorders are high performance training techniques?

    God bless,

    coach scotty

  3. Amy said,

    Hi Scotty,

    If I could speak to the USPTA, I would like them to follow the WTA’s example and require background checks for teaching pros, current and new applicants.

    No I don’t think safeguards are in place and that enough education is being done to bring safety to underage tennis players. I think there should be a minimum certifiable standard of basic sports nutrition education for coaches and teaching pros.

    There are screening tests that can be done to make sure an athlete is not being subjected to eating disorder practices by their coaches…perhaps these screening checks need to be implemented for a player to participate in matches. If an eating disorder is then suspected due to a screening, and further analysis substantiates it, then the player can get the help they need, and then allowed to return to the circuit when certified recovered. Then there would be no advantage for a coach to insist his player starve, binge and purge to meet their unreasonable and dangerous demands on the athlete.

    At the very least, an anti-eating disorder campaign could be launched with seminars held for young athletes and a flood of advertisements, articles, pamphlets, etc. providing young players with the facts on the true dangers of eating disorders, and on what actually is healthy sports nutrition. Obviously with the high amount of eating disorders within the tennis industry, it is time to make sure young tennis athletes have good information about the how to nutritionally achieve desired physical goals with a more permanent and life long, healthy result.

    The global tennis industry needs to make a stand and send a clear message to its youth that any coach that is demanding this type of dysfunctional and unhealthy nutrition of them does not have their best interest at heart, and is not acceptable within the tennis industry.

    I think there should be a well published hotline funded by tennis organizations for abused underage kids to call for help – emotional and legal help. A life line that gains a reputation among players for truly getting players the help they need.

    This is just an example of a few minutes brain-storming…I am sure others may come up with more and better solutions to the abuses affecting too many underage athletes within the tennis industry. The point is – global tennis organizations should be coming up with SOMETHING to finally start protecting these underage tennis athletes from being forced into dangerous eating disorders and sexual abuse. These organizations are in a position to institute the needed safeguards and education needed to stop the perpetrators of these crimes and abuses, to provide assistance and protection for the victims, and to help prevent future abuses.

    I would ask the USPTA and all other global tennis organizations to wake up and realize their lack of responsibility up to this point which helped create the breeding ground for such abuses, and to come up with viable safeguards and education for the protection of underage tennis players.


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