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Belleisle and Bathgate ProAm – June 2018

With back to back Pro-Ams last week its always interesting meeting your teams and what type of reactions you receive when explaining Logos Golf Ministries as my attachment and that I am not your usual Club Professional. There was a bit off a difference with both events and the conditions.

I’ve attended the Parkdean Pro-Am at Belleisle every other year and although not a difficult course, it always has swirling winds due to the tall trees that spread over the layout. The winds were very strong and we knew this was going to be tough day, but the sun was out and that’s always a bonus. My playing partners were Simon, Sam and Ross who had travelled all the way from Leeds just to play in this event. Simon loves this part of the world and he always brings a team from his company to Ayrshire each year for a day out.

As we got started I was able to explain to the guys about my background and the reasons for me playing on the Tartan tour along with our Pro-am at Archerfield. This lasted for about ten minutes or so and I thought I was in for some good chats about the ministry during the round as they seemed quite intrigued. Sadly this did not go any further and nothing else was mentioned for the rest of the round. It was as if I had said my bit and that was enough of that for them. They asked me about plenty of other things during the round but I could tell it was about everything else but the ministry.

We all found the golf very tricky due to the winds and the slick greens but overall we didn’t play that badly despite some challenging holes. I am definitely more patient with my golf these days but probably becoming more impatient regarding interest in the ministry. I’m still guarding against being pushy but really want to chat more in depth rather than just give it the usual summary. I know I can’t force things if people don’t want to listen but I am looking to be more aware of any possible opportunities that might be missed during a round. Something to keep praying about.

We had soup and sandwiches before departing and chatted about the world cup amongst other topical issues but that was about it. Driving home I felt a bit deflated due to the frustration of not scoring as well as I played and not feeling as though much came from the day. I was then quickly reminded that every day is a learning curve and this experience should help me for future events. Nothing is ever wasted with God and I will return here more positive.

Bathgate is always a very well supported Pro-Am and this is most likely down to the host professional Stuart Callan. Stuart was one of the first professionals I ever played with when I was still an amateur back in the 90’s and he’s a true gentleman who looks after all the Pro’s when they come to his club. I was chatting to him outside the shop as he was lending me a trolley for the day and I explained about the Logos Pro-Am in October and if he would like to attend as one of the Pros. He was honest enough to say he doesn’t play much and would not want to let a team down but I took the opportunity to say he could bring a team of his friends so that he wasn’t under too much pressure and this seemed to go down better. I’ll keep in touch with him.

I had the pleasure of playing with the Captains team made up of Brian, Mhairi, and Bobby. Brian and Mhairi are the Gent and Lady Captains of Bathgate and Bobby was a guest of Brian. Right away there was a different feel to the team and I got to share with all of them regarding the ministry which was received well over the front 9. Mhairi is also a past champion of Bathgate and plays of 5 so she was impressed that we had Alison Nicholas coming to speak at our event and hopefully this might result in a ladies team coming along.

My game has been feeling stronger all the time and this is probably the best I have hit the ball all year. When you hit 16 greens in regulation and only miss 1 fairway it feels really good but my putting was a tad off due to how fast and slick Bathgate’s greens were. I thought Belleisle’s were quick but these were off the chart and I struggled to get the pace for most of the round. It wasn’t till the last few holes that I felt more comfy with them but would argue that I played good enough to win if only the putts had dropped in the first half of the round. I’ve never said that before but know I am moving on to the next level and need to keep getting myself in these positions to let it happen.

My fellow Pro, Stephen Gray was playing ahead of me and watched as I hit a good shot into the 14thto about 10 feet. As I missed the breaking putt and walked back to the tee where he was waiting, I said I was struggling on the greens to which he offered to have a look at my stroke. Stevie is probably one of the best putters on the Tartan tour and I might take him up on the offer at some point. He asked if I was playing at Drumpellier on the Sunday but I said to him “No, I try not to play on Sunday unless I really have to”, to which he replied, “ Oh are you studying John Chapter whatever”. This is just Stevie’s humour and something that makes me smile. He did ask to come to the Pro-Am again after hearing Luther Blacklock speak last year so there is hope.

We did well as a team but just finished outside the prizes due to some very low team scores. After enjoying a terrific meal and friendly chat we looked forward to possibly meeting again in some capacity and it was a nice way to end the day. I caught Stuart just as he was about to start the prizegiving and thanked him for his hospitality while reminding him of my offer to attend Archerfield. I hope he can make it.

Please pray for those mentioned in this report and for the Logos Pro-Am in October.

In his service,

Vincent

ASI Scottish Par 3 – June 2018

The first I had heard of this event was during a call to my friend after the Northern Open. He had contacted me to say unlucky for just missing out on the final day and then proceeded to invite me to attend Paul Lawrie’s Par 3 tournament held at his own course in Aberdeen. Although it was short notice I felt that I should attend and what a great little event to be part of.

I asked for a late time on the Thursday so that I would only be away for 1 night and this also allowed me to travel up that morning. On arrival I was blown away by how the event was organised and I suppose this is due to the host trying to make it similar to a tour event set up. Although this was a par 3 tournament over a 9 hole course, you could have been forgiven for thinking we were at the biggest event of the year due to crowds, sponsors boards round each tee and in particular, a Players Lounge. Very well done.

We were to play the 9 hole course twice each day and after looking online at the layout of the course I was thinking how hard could this course be with the longest hole at just over 200 yards. I then saw some of the scores earlier that day and knew it was to be much harder than anticipated. It was the day of the high winds that battered most of Scotland and the wind never really went away all day. Apparently we had it easier in the afternoon but I don’t see how the wind could have been worse than we had it that evening. A well struck 3 wood going 165 yards says it all.

I was playing with a European tour player and former British Amateur Champion and I could tell right away how good a player he was. It didn’t take long for us to chat about our stories and its incredible how someone half my age has already played on Tour and even more impressive, The Masters, US Open and The Open. My golfing CV was just a bit less illustrious but my personal story caught his attention and he liked to hear that my wife and I were helping kids who needed the help. He didn’t mention much about my Logos story but it was a good interaction.

We really struggled in what was borderline conditions but this was a fun course to play and all you can do when its like that is get on with it. At times it felt like crazy golf but was really enjoyable and both of us almost made holes in one at the 100 yard 7th/16thdespite being downwind to a half island green. Only 1 professional out of the field broke par and that shows just how tough it was. Feeling a bit hard done by, we both finished our last hole and were glad to get in after losing to the course that day. We would get another crack at it tomorrow and the forecast was slightly better.

A drinks reception was held at a local hotel that evening and this gave me a chance to catch up with some friends and network a little. Two there are coming to the Logos Pro Am this year but I got chatting to one of the Loch Lomond Whiskey reps regarding Logos and he was very interested in this due to his family having ties with the Church of Scotland. As we chatted he expressed interest in attending the event and also providing some prizes courtesy of the distillery. Loch Lomond Whiskies is now a major sponsor for some of the big events this summer and they are really trying to put themselves on the map with the branding. A really positive chat and unexpected to say the least.

Day 2 was a bit calmer but still a very strong west wind to keep us on our toes. As I was hitting balls on the range I got that chance to chat with a former European Tour player, who is from the Aberdeen area, and I wanted to ask him about potential venues for a Logos Pro Am in the North. There was always a vision about have a few events around the country so that we were reaching all areas, and he felt our best venues would probably be Royal Aberdeen or Trump. Personally I think Royal Aberdeen sounds better but we wont get political. He was more than happy to support the event and I definitely think this is something to pray about for next year or the year after.

I was playing with Michael from Elgin for the 2ndround and we got off to a reasonable start despite ‘the breeze’. Michael is a really easy going guy and it was great to chat with him during our game. It turns out he has family that stay round the corner from me, so next time he is down we will definitely meet up and have a few holes at Dullatur. Always good to sow a new seed and it lays the foundation for more in-depth discussion. We managed to shave off some shots from our first round and both posted 3 over for the second round which shows just how difficult a little course this is. During the event I used every club in the bag apart from the driver and that gives an indication of how different each shot was over the course of the two days. This is a testament to the variation of the holes and slopes round about them which is a cracking par 3 course that tests the best.

I hope to return to this event and would encourage anyone who has not visited the Paul Lawrie Golf Centre to go and try it if you are ever in that area. I know that we will have a Logos event in the North East soon and I really feel God is going to work greatly in that area. Please pray for Logos Golf Ministries working throughout Scotland and beyond and for those mentioned in this report.

In his service,

Vincent

Northern Open at Nairn Dunbar – June 2018

It is quite sad that over the past few years now this event has ran without a sponsor. This is supposed to be the 2ndbiggest event on the Tartan Tour behind the Scottish PGA Championship, but with only 85 entries it shows that many professionals simply will not play due to the dwindling prizefund. The field used to be 150 players made up of Tartan Tour, Challenge Tour & Top Amateur golfers, but after expenses it’s only profitable by finishing in the Top 3!- I understand the lack of support.

I had never played Nairn Dunbar so it was good to get a practise round on the Monday to get a feel for the place. As I scooted round on my own I could see this was a very strategic course that required accurate driving. Very tight in places and certain sides you just could not miss the fairway. This was going to be a good challenge but I liked the course and felt I could do something round it. It was nice and calm during the practise day – never a good sign.

As I arrived for the tournament we were greeted by sunshine and blue sky and it was very warm. With a stiff breeze coming off the east it was going to be tricky but probably the easiest wind to play the course. I was playing with good young players so it was a great draw and got the chance right away to share something on the 1sttee. The Starter was just about to announce us when he came over to me and asked about the pronunciation of ‘Logos Golf Ministries’. This gave me the opportunity to go over what we do with everyone standing there and after I was finished the starter patted me on the back and said, “Good for you lad, well done”.

The front 9 was tough as we were into the wind most of the way, but the back 9 played a bit easier so some good opportunities to pick up some shots on the way in. Both Chris and Sam are quite chatty so we spoke quite a bit going round and I mentioned the Pro-Am again which Chris is definitely coming to play. We all played well coming in but I had dropped too many shots on the front to post a decent score. I would need to score under par on the second day to make the cut with there only being 30 places available.

After the round I got to chat with Chris’s friend, Ross Leeds, who is attached to Archerfield Links, and I asked him if he wanted to attend the Logos Pro-Am due to the fact that is his home course. He was more than happy to accept the offer and good to have a Professional from Archerfield present. Overall not a bad day but should really have been a few shots less.

After a good nights sleep, I was off a little earlier on day 2 so had breakfast early and headed to the practise ground. I bumped into Craig Ronald who was hitting balls just along from me and we chatted about the previous day and what was required for getting through. I knew that I would need around 2 or 3 under at least and was ready to give it a go anyway. Craig had attended the Logos Pro-Am last year and I felt he should come along again to hear Alison Nicholas so I took the opportunity to invite him again and he gladly accepted. Craig knows the story with what I do and the fact he is coming back again after hearing what Luther Blacklock had to say last year is very positive.

I was playing with Chris and Sam again so we could continue our chats from yesterday and got to know Sam a little better and his very dry sense of humour. He didn’t say much about my work after the chats from yesterday but he was impressed by the fact I am an ‘ambassador’ and thought this was very regal. As we made our way through the front 9 the boys struggled a bit, but I seemed to be the one setting the pace in the group and by the 12thhole I was under par. Chris was struggling but I gave him a quiet word and told him he was doing fine and to trust his game. He then proceeded to eagle the following hole and get himself back on track so I was glad to have helped a bit.

I knew I was still a few shots away from qualifying so needed a couple more birdies at least. Over the last few holes I missed a few 10 foot putts for birdies which would have put me in a really good position but was still in with a shout if I finished with a birdie 4 on the last hole. We were all feeling tired after another day of golf in quite blustery conditions, but we all hit decent drives and were left with mid-irons to the green. Both the boys were sitting around the 1 over par mark which was going to make it in comfortably but I was sitting at 5 over for the tournament after a bogey at 17, and knew I needed at least a birdie to finish. As I glanced at the board I could see that I now needed to make the 20 foot putt for the 3 to post 3 over for the tournament and be sure of getting through. I had a go at it anyway and unfortunately just misread the break so it left me 5 feet by the hole. I missed the return.

After play the boys congratulated me on a good second round and thought I was unlucky not to qualify with how I played. I was just hoping the cut didn’t go to 4 over as I wouldn’t have been happy 3 putting the last hole and missing by 1. The cut was 3 over, I needed the 3.

It’s disappointing to just miss it again this year but overall a very positive event with some good play and more important some good conversations. Please pray for those mentioned in this report and for the continued support of the Logos Pro-Am this year.

In his service,

Vincent

SPANISH OPEN – APRIL 2018

10-12 April 2018 – Open de Espana

My first golf trip with Christians in Sport / LOGOS to the Open de Espana was really worthwhile, interesting and enjoyable – even though the weather in Madrid was quite overcast and cold until Thursday!

Before travelling to Spain, I was encouraged by a verse that my predecessor Ken Revie shared with me:

Isaiah 52 v 12: “…The Lord will go before you, the God of Israel will be your rear guard.”

Remembering that small sentence from the Bible helped me to go into this first event with reassurance of God’s support and help.

It was great to touch base with a few of the players/caddies who are Christians. In particular, I chatted with two players and one caddie who are keen to meet on a regular basis. I’m really looking forward to developing these relationships over the coming months. Next week in Morocco we’ll spend a longer time together looking at a Bible passage and praying together before the tournament begins.

But in a wider sense this work is also about developing relationships and trust with golfers / caddies who are not Christians (the very large majority). So that can often mean simply talking about golf, other sports (most of the golfers are also big football fans!) and family.

I had good chats at the course with a few of the Scottish players who I had existing relationships with through BBC work. Then over dinner I got to know another player from further afield. They are all aware of what my role with Christians in Sport / LOGOS entails, even though it didn’t dominate those conversations.

During the couple of days in Madrid, one person in particular asked me several sincere questions about my Christian faith, and sometimes it was quite challenging to answer those! It was a strong reminder to me that people are searching for true hope in life.

On Thursdays at events, I help a sports marketing company do a survey of players’ equipment. This means being on the practice range for a large part of the day, noting what clubs / balls / clothes the players use, as they each come to the range for 30-60 minutes before they start the tournament. It is another good way of being in close contact with the players and their caddies.

My prayer is that I can be a good ambassador for Christ in the way I speak and act in all my dealings with people on the European Tour.

This Saturday it’s back to BBC football work in Glasgow and then next Tuesday I fly to Rabat in Morocco for a couple of days at the Trophee Hassan event.

Thanks for your interest and support

Kenny

Kenny Crawford, Logos Golf Ministries Chaplain to the European Tour.  You can follow Kenny on Twitter here.

Job Opportunity: LOGOS Golf Ministries Fieldworker – PGA European Tour

Job Title: LOGOS Golf Ministries Fieldworker – PGA European Tour

LOGOS Golf Ministries work under the umbrella of Christians in Sport.

Employment Type: One season’s contractual work with a view to extend (April – November 2018).

Salary: Dependent on experience.

Hours of work: Attendance at an agreed number of PGA European Tour season events made between the successful applicant and LOGOS Golf Ministries at the start of the season. Each trip lasts 3 days, generally Tuesday – Thursday.

Closing date: Tuesday 2nd January 2018. Interviews will take place in January 2018.

To apply: Send your CV and a covering letter outlining why you are suitable for the position to Elizabeth Chambers, elizabeth@christiansinsport.org.uk. If you have any questions regarding the role please don’t hesitate to email the address above.

Job Purpose

The successful applicant will play a vital role, as part of a specialised team, in reaching out to and serving the world of professional golf. The travelling lifestyle of a Tour player makes it difficult for Christians to access regular fellowship, pastoral support and bible teaching and for fellow golfers to hear about how the Christian faith applies to their sport.

LOGOS Golf Ministries fieldworkers travel on the PGA European Tour, PGA Ladies European Tour and the PGA Tartan Tour, where they aim to build relationships with officials, players and caddies, lead bible studies for Christians and those wanting to explore the Christian faith and provide pastoral support. This particular role will focus on the PGA European Tour.

The successful applicant will also play a part in the team which supply the Official European Tour golf equipment census.

Key duties

– Travel to an agreed number of PGA European Tour season events to fulfil duties outlined below.

– Find and encourage Christian officials, players and caddies in integrating their Christian faith with their sport, through regular bible studies, conversation and pastoral care.

– Give the opportunity for all on the Tour to consider how the Christian faith fits and enhances the world of professional golf.

– Host group Bible studies at season events.

– Provide regular post-tournament reports to LOGOS Golf Ministries.

– Carry out duties for Sports Marketing Surveys Inc. as part of the Official European Tour golf equipment census. These duties are focused on the Thursday of each event (5am – 4pm) plus two hours preparation on the Wednesday of each event.

Click here to view the full job description and person specification

SPANISH LADIES OPEN – SEPTEMBER 2017

The Andalucia Costa Del Sol Open De Espana Femenino – Real Club de Golf Guadalmina – 21st – 24th September 2017

This week I travelled to Spain representing Logos Golf Ministries to support the Christians on the Ladies European Tour.

Time was spent connecting with players, caddies, tour staff, families and friends of players. Many conversations were started on the grounds of why I was at the tournament, which gave me the opportunity to explain my presence on the tour– interesting conversations followed about faith and belief in God after my role was explained.

A parent of a player who I had played with in May in a golf event came and spoke to me as he was caddying for his other daughter in Spain. He had a heavy heart as the daughter who I had played with had been involved in a car crash and suffered a stroke. She is only 19 years old and a very good golfer. He showed me all the photos of her in hospital learning to walk again and I was there just to listen and share his grief.

He asked me why I was in Spain so I explained and asked if it was ok that I prayed for and he said please do. I also offered to go and visit her but he had to go to the tee quickly so we could not exchange contact details.

I was able to connect with two Christian players and we had a Bible study on the Friday evening together. We studied from a book called The Life of Jesus focusing on the chapter called “the story that can change your life.” We looked at the four gospels but particularly at John 20:30-31 and the verses that begin ”these things are written so that you can believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, then by believing, you can have life through his name”.

It was an encouraging time of fellowship as we prayed for each other to be bold in sharing our faith to those on tour. We prayed that others would be interested in coming to the Bible studies and that God would go before us in raising others up for Christ. We also prayed for one of the player’s families as none of them believe in God but have been to church with her in America.

It was a really encouraging time as both players are strong believers. One is a fairly new believer who is particularly on fire for God. I encouraged them to keep praying for the tour and for us all to stand firm in our faith going forward.

I had some more time watching them both play and encouraging them with their golf and faith. I got the opportunity to sit down with the other Christian player and have some one on one time with her.  I prayed with her and gave her some scriptures to meditate on to assist her in understanding fully her identity in Christ rather than having her identity in her sports performance.

Embed from Getty Images

Alison Nicholas

Douglas Park Pro-Am – August 2017

Douglas Park Golf Club hosts one of the few Pro-Ams that I always play in each year due to where it is and there is always a healthy support for this Pro-Am, meaning plenty of Professionals required for it. After the weather of the previous 2 days I was not even sure if the event would go ahead but no messages from the PGA that morning so business as usual.

On arrival I made my way to the practice putting green to find a very wet and spongy surface which was not great to putt on. The alarm bells were going off already and I could see a number of puddles down the 1st and 18th holes. The course was probably borderline for playing and if this had been a Saturday medal I’m sure it would not have gone ahead. The problem the officials have in these circumstances is that a lot of money and planning goes into organizing a Pro-Am, so unless there are rivers running down the fairways and lakes on the greens they will always try and go ahead. The alternative is to rearrange for another day which is very hard to do at this stage in the year.

None of my playing partners had played the course before. As we walked down the 1st hole I got chatting to one of them about my role with the ministry as he asked what club I was at due to the announcement on the tee of my attachment. Its always good to get in there early and I got to give him a fairly comprehensive explanation before we finished the hole. I also had a moment with another partner around the 5th hole where he asked, “So what’s Logos Ministries then?”. He had obviously been thinking about it for a bit and then felt he had to ask, so this was another good chat which lasted for the duration of the hole. He thought it was good idea to have something like that on the tartan tour and was quite impressed we have got an event on the calendar. As usual this year, the weather changed from being fairly calm to being wet and windy. It was a tough slog for the back 9 with the course playing it’s full length, and Douglas Park’s greens are difficult enough when dry never mind being spongy with the amount of rain they had taken over the past days. All the scores that day were quite high due to this and definitely added to an ‘off’ day for me.

On completion of our round we headed to the lounge for dinner and we sat and had a good chat about various things from the Ministry to Golf Equipment. Despite the round falling short of all our expectations we thoroughly enjoyed each others company and will try too keep in touch. One of my partners, being an retired golf club maker, has even offered to meet up with me before next season to have a look at my equipment so that he can assure me of the shafts being ‘pured’ and balanced. Without getting into the science too much this is a great offer even with a new set of clubs and I will definitely meet with him over a few holes at some point before the end of the season.

Just as I was about to leave I bumped into a fellow Pro and friend  who had finished tied  for 1st place that day. He has struggled recently with his knee and even had surgery on it this year so is only now getting back to playing more. He asked me how things were going and I mentioned to him about the Logos Pro-Am in September. He is going to see if he can bring a team to the event as he would like to attend as one of the Professionals but will see how his knee is holding up. I pray he can make it. Overall, a very encouraging day despite the course conditions and nothing better than a chance meeting. Is there such a thing??

A very quick mention of thanks to my friend Ewan Forgie who invited me to the Grace Church Golf Day at Falkirk Tryst on Friday. This gave a great opportunity for Christians and Non-Christians to play golf with each other and I was especially privileged to share a brief story of my journey after a very enjoyable game and meal. During the day I was able to speak with my playing companion Aidan regarding the Ministry in more detail and we had a really good chat over dinner which I think will result in us meeting up again for a game. A real gentleman and a terrific golfer who along with 80 year old Jimmy was a pleasure to play with. By the way, Jimmy plays off an 8 handicap and still hits it pretty good – incredible.

Please pray for those mentioned in this report and for future conversations.

In his Service,

Vincent


Vincent Brown, PGA Professional on the Tartan Tour
Vincent Brown, Logos Golf Ministries Ambassador to the Tartan Tour
Contact Vincent by email vb@logosgolfministries.com

NORTHERN IRELAND OPEN – AUGUST 2017

Challenge Tour – NI Open Galgorm Castle GC Ballymena Nth Ireland August 7-11

Our Christian caddie from SA was to be in town this week, but I’m afraid that having arrived at Dublin airport and being asked where he was headed and informing said authorities he was going to Northern Ireland, he found out his visa didn’t take him into the United Kingdom …. Had he said, he was staying in the Republic of Ireland, he’d have been okay, but he thought honesty was the best policy …

SAs need several visas; Europe, EU, UK etc and unusually for him, and all SAs, who are well genned up on such matters, he had overlooked some detail this time around …. As it turned out, another friend of ours was at the event and ended up carrying the player’s bag!  So he and I spent some time chatting over the week ….

As I mentioned before, living across the road from Galgorm makes this a very ‘home’ event, which is the answer to most players/caddies queries when they ask why I’m at a Challenge Tour tournament … These days around half the field at CT events have been on the ET for varying lengths of time so there are lots of familiar faces, never mind the host of Ballymena people one comes across every other step in and about the venue …

It was good to have a chat with a player who had a major operation a couple of years ago when going very well on the ET and is now working his way back. It was also good to catch up some familiar faces and others I hadn’t seen for some time. There were lots of soundbite moments this week …

The NI Open is the players’ favourite on the CT, and it is easy to see why, with the effort that goes in to make it a special tournament on the calendar, and that is greatly appreciated by all those taking part

Next Event; Czech Masters in Prague

Proverbs 12:22

The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in men who are truthful.

Ken Revie Logos Golf Ministries

Ken Revie, Logos Golf Ministries Chaplain to the European Tour. Catch Ken by email on kr@logosgolfministries.com

March Newsletter

newsletter
March Newsletter

MARCH 2016 NEWSLETTER

Joshua Ch 1 v 9 ‘Be strong and courageous…for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go’
As we face the opportunities and challenges of 2016, we could do little better than to consider the words shown above, spoken by God to Joshua. Joshua was about to lead the Israelite people across the Jordan into the ‘Promised Land’ and Joshua would have gained a huge amount of strength, both physical and spiritual, from the words that God spoke to him at that time.
All of us in the Logos team including our front line chaplains appreciate both the challenge in these words and also the encouragement they contain. As we plan for a new season of activity, the call is for all of us (yes, that also includes you!) to be strong and courageous and to depend entirely on the strength that comes from knowing God’s presence as we serve him wherever we are planted.
Please stand with us as we look to fulfil our mission of ‘taking the Word of God to the world of golf’.

Continue reading March Newsletter