Posted On:12/06/2003 11:27pm
Pastor fights on side of Christ
Akron church's martial arts classes help men grow spiritually, physically
By Colette M. JenkinsBeacon Journal religion writer
When the Rev. James Roma committed his life to Christ more than 30 years ago, he struggled with how to reconcile his training in an art that is designed to hurt, maim and kill with the commandment to be merciful.``I prayed and studied the Bible looking for an answer, and I concluded that I have the right to protect myself, my property and the weak, innocent and helpless,'' said Roma, pastor of Wintergreen Ledges Church of God in Akron.
``There is a difference between self-defense and vengeance.''That internal struggle was resolved before he became a pastor. Now he is blending his martial arts and pastoring skills to reach out to men in the community.
His martial arts class, which was started four years ago, is open to Christians and non-Christians and people with or without martial arts experience.On Tuesday evenings, Shihan Roma dons his gi in the church gym and teaches Vee-jitsu, a martial arts style named after the late Florendo M. Visitacion, who was known throughout the world as one of this century's greatest martial artists.
Visitacion, known as Professor Vee, personally trained Roma.Roma, 52, has been pastor at Wintergreen Ledges since 1993.
He began practicing martial arts when he was a 13-year-old boy growing up in East Bangor, Pa.``I saw two of the rougher kids in town. They had their karate uniforms on -- their gis -- and I asked what they were doing.
They said they were taking karate and they would show it to me if I wanted to see it,'' Roma said. ``So, I ran out to the ball field with them. They hit me and knocked me down. I remember having a splitting headache. I was hurting, but I was fascinated. Something triggered and I wanted to learn more.''Roma joined the class with the two boys and began his training in a form of karate called Isshinryu.
He continued his training in judo, jujitsu and Filipino Arnis (stick and knife techniques) and other art forms.In 1973, Roma began to study directly under Visitacion, and worked with him until the teacher's death in 1999.
Visitacion, also a Christian, helped Roma strengthen his spiritual life as well as the physical, mental and emotional aspects of his life. The original letter from Visitacion inviting Roma to become his student is framed and hangs in Roma's church office.
``He was a very quiet and humble man. He loved everybody and treated everybody with respect,'' Roma said. ``He had a genuine love for humanity.''
Teaching serves God.....
Shogun of Long Island
Posted On:12/06/2003 11:38pm
God used to kick ass until that his gay son turned him into a pansy.
Posted On:12/06/2003 11:43pm
i think God killed almost as many jews as hitler!
Posted On:12/06/2003 11:49pm
Is that a bad thing, you ccksckr <big dummy>?
Last edited by blankslate; 12/07/2003 12:25am at .
Posted On:12/06/2003 11:54pm
i'm just pointing out that God spent a lot more time killing his chosen people than their enemies. thanks but no thanks, God!
Such as thou art, sometime was I.
Posted On:12/06/2003 11:55pm
Style: Brazilian Jiujitsu
Just like Mao Zedong!
Normally, I'd say I was grappling, but I was taking down and mounting people, and JFS has kindly informed us that takedowns and being mounted are neither grappling nor anti grappling, so I'm not sure what the **** I was doing. Maybe schroedinger's sparring, where it's neither grappling nor anti-grappling until somoene observes it and collapses the waveform, and then I RNC a cat to death.----fatherdog
Posted On:12/06/2003 11:56pm
abraham should have gone with baal while he could!
chinese emperors are obviously smarter than God! at least when they slaughter their own people, they have a giant wall to show for it!
Posted On:12/06/2003 11:57pm
Cool. A godless fag tag team! Keep up the good work, heathens.
Posted On:12/06/2003 11:59pm
I'm a Lutheran. Which means I believe in Thor and his mighty hammer.
Posted On:12/07/2003 12:01am
Take Mjolnir and stick it up your loose MOD as-.
Last edited by blankslate; 12/07/2003 12:12am at .
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