Kaká – Liberty University Convocation
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Kaká – Liberty University Convocation

November 22, 2019


>>DAVID NASSER: On June the 12th this summer,
I know that all of us had our hearts broken over what we saw take place in the Pulse nightclub
shooting in Orlando, Florida. When that happened, I know that all of us
were on bended knee just going after God and asking God for just healing. And for him, really through tragedy to create
testimony. I was in Orlando the week after that with
First Baptist Orlando at a youth camp, and while we were there, one afternoon Pastor
David Uth, who is with us by the way today. Can we welcome Pastor David? He’s been with that church for 11 years. They have nearly 20,000 members at that church-one
of the great churches in the nation. Pastor David, one night as the pastor of the
church that was hosting the youth camp came out just for the evening to hang out with
some of the teenagers, and he brought with him our other guest tonight, and this morning. And when he brought Kaká with him, it was
pretty amazing to watch just someone who I knew as a great celebrity who always talked
about his faith just make himself so incredibly approachable to the students that were there. He not only came and sat on the front row,
and listened to the sermon, and was involved in the time of worship, but then he just got
up and just honestly began to speak into the life of a lot of the teenagers that were there. And Pastor David told me at the end—this
is how he is every Sunday when he comes to church. He just shows up, brings friends. He’s always available, and he’s just a real
servant, and so we asked him at that moment if he would come and be a part of convocation
with us. We originally were going to be together on
September the 28th, and on that day, in honor of the Pulse, you know, shooting—the night
club shooting, we had decided to partner with First Baptist Orlando to do a blood drive. About 300 of you today are wearing a red tee-shirt
that says liberty loves Orlando. Will you stand up if you’re just all over
this room wearing that shirt today? I know not everybody got to wear them, but
we broke our record giving blood in memory and in honor of those Pulse victims and their
families. Can we just celebrate that just for one second
together? Pretty amazing little moment. Thank you for giving blood. You are saving lives. I know that that in a physical sense doesn’t
directly affect those in Orlando, but at the same time, that is what the Red Cross, in
that state, brought up as an idea that we could kind of implement into our culture to
say, hey, we love you. We’re thinking about you, and you’re not alone. And so, with that said, Kaká was supposed
to be with us on that day, but he got a brand new coach in his team, and they rescheduled
the way that they did practices and rehearsals. And so he graciously has agreed to come now
and be a part of this day with us. So let’s watch this sizzle reel, and then
we’ll bring out the great Ricardo Kaká. Let’s watch this video.>>VIDEO: Now it really, in a lot of ways,
was the Kaká show tonight. Kaká on Jefferson Mana, Kaká around Jefferson
Mana, going for himself just seconds at the end. Kaká just bursting in late. He started the play picking the ball off. It just falls right to him. Look at that reaction time from Kaká. The in an instant off his foot into the root
of the net. Still Kaká, still Kaká! Kaká is a professional soccer player who
plays as an attacking midfielder for Orlando City Soccer Club. He signed his first professional contract
at the age of 15. In 2003, he joined the Italian club Milan
where he won a Serie A Title in the UEFA Champion’s league. In 2007 he received the FIFA World Player
of the Year and European Footballer of the Year Awards. In 2015, he was named Major League Soccer
All-Star MVP. He was the first athlete to amass 10 million
followers on Twitter and is the 42nd most followed person on Twitter just behind Kanye
West and just ahead of Alicia Keys, Neil Patrick Harris, and the National Basketball Association. Liberty University, please welcome international
futbol star Kaká to the stage.>>NASSER: Kaká, welcome!>>KAKA: Thank you. Thank you very much! What a great pleasure to be here this morning
with you, and it’s a pleasure for me to be here and share what God has done in my life. So every time that I try to share the Gospel
and everything that God has done with me, I use a translator. Most of the times it’s Gill, because my vocabulary
in English is not good enough to say what God has been for me. So I just want to say thank you again in English. But after answering the questions I will answer
in Portuguese (inaudible). And
thank you again for this great opportunity. It’s amazing to be here. I’m used to play for a crowd like this, but
it’s big for a crowd like this is the first time. I’m a little bit nervous.>>NASSER: Ricardo just mentioned that also
Pastor David brought another one of their pastors from First Orlando, Gill. Gill, thanks for being our translator for
the moment, so we’ll need you. Can we welcome him into the house as well?>>GILL: Thank you. it’s good to be here.>>NASSER: Incredible missionary pastor. Ricardo, take us back to the very beginning. How did you get involved in soccer? I know you were 18-years-old when you went
from someone who no one knew to all of a sudden becoming a world figure in athletics. So tell us your story on how you got involved
in soccer and how you just became known throughout the world.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I grew up playing soccer.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I started at the age of eight.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And I went through all the basic
categories of the team called Saint Paulo.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And then something, like something
very important happened in my life.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: When I was 18 years of age I played
for one of the teams in Sao Paulo. They changed the name to -.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I was one of the main players of
that team.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I was suspended like one of the weekends
because of yellow cards—the number of yellow cards I had received.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So I went, I took the opportunity
to visit my grandparents from my dad’s side just to spend time with them.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And then playing with my brother
in the swimming pool>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I went down the water slide>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And the way I went down I hit my
head on the bottom of the pool.>>KAKA: [Portuguese] So when I got out of the pool my head was
bleeding>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So then my brother got ahold of me
and then we went to the hospital.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And we had an x-ray done, and I also
had some stitches on my head.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But until that moment nothing serious
had happened.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So I went back to Saint Paulo.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I trained for two days—on Monday
and Tuesday.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But I couldn’t bear the pain.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So I went back to the hospital.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I did some medical tests.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And then the medic told me that I
had a fracture in one of the bones.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So the first question I asked him
was when am I going to be able to play soccer again?>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And his answer was very remarkable
to me.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: He said to me, you should thank God
in this moment that you are able to walk.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: From now on we’re going to see where
you’re going to be able to get.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So the championship finished that
year.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And I spend two months on the bench.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And then in January 2001>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I started playing again.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I began training with my team.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And then at the same time the tournament
began—a tournament for my category.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: There was also another tournament,
a championship, from the professional team.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So then my team had a game on the
same day as the professional team.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And then the coach from the professional
team asked the coach from the other team, my team, for some players—to suggest some
players to play.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So they asked for a forward and also
midfield.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: My coach said I have two that play
forward, and I’m going to send you one.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But my midfield is my captain.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I’m not able to send him off.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I’m going to send the one that’s
usually on the bench.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And who was that guy?>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And then I made my entry in the professional
realm, professional team.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And then my career began to take
off since then.>>NASSER: More than take off—became a soccer
legend. And just another thing that you’re really
known for outside of just being an incredible athlete is your faith in Jesus Christ. One of the famous moments in so many times
that you’ve scored a goal has been is you always rip your jersey, and the tee-shirt
under it says I belong to Jesus. We have one of those photos. Can put that up real quickly? This is kind of a known thing for you. So many times after you score you always will
reveal that and bring glory to God. Tell us about your faith in Jesus Christ and
how you became a Christian, and how God drives every decision that you make.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I grew up in a Christian home.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: My parents always raised me by teaching
me on Christian principles.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And little by little I began to have
my own experiences with God.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: When I was 13 years of age, I decided
to get baptized.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And after that I had many experiences
with God.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And after I had become a professional
player>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: You end up becoming a celebrity;
it’s inevitable.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I thought that I wasn’t really able
to hide who I really was.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I remember people telling me you’re
always talking about Jesus.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: You score a goal and then you lift
your hands up to the heavens.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I told them I cannot deny myself. This is who I am.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Whenever I score goals and I lift
my hands up>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I’m not saying in any moment that
it was God the one that scored the goal.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: It’s just—. It’s just a way of thanking Him for having
given me this gift and also enabling me to do something I love to do.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And obviously I had to make many
important decisions in my life,>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And I believe all these decisions
that I made they were guided by God.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I am now currently 34 years of age.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I learned in my life to do something. I call it the process of making a choice or
making a decision.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I know that many of you are living
very difficult moments—moments of decision.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And many times we seek divine signs
or something really special.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I surely believe that God—>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: He can give you an important sign.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I never really had this powerful
sign like fire coming down from heaven.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But I always had peace in my heart.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So then I made some important decisions
in my life.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: That enabled me to be where I am
today.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: In all of these decisions—>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: They’re based on what I actually
believe is God’s will for me.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And that makes all the difference
for me in this life of faith that I live.>>NASSER: Amen. That’s awesome. Pastor David, you have almost 20,000 people
at your church. This is certainly not the first time you’ve
had a professional athlete or celebrity in your congregation. Can you tell us, what’s it like being the
pastor of someone who has 28 million Twitter followers? What’s it like to lead, by principle, somebody
who submits to your leadership as a spiritual leader, but yet at the same time has a platform
that’s much greater than even someone like yourself? Would you speak to that for just a second?>>DAVID UTH: Yeah, good morning Liberty. Man, it’s good to be here with you, and I
want to tell you something. I have been with a lot of athletes that have
done well, and others, but the most humble and the most gracious that I have ever been
around is the one sitting to my right. He is, by far, the most Christ-like gracious
person. When he started coming with his mom, Simone,
who’s right behind us. When he started coming, and he started bringing
people with him, we had seats down front for him, because we thought it would help him
if he was able to get in and out without getting mobbed, because our church is a very diverse
church. We have about 37 languages spoken in our church,
and so many are Brazilian, and we knew that he was such a celebrity that it would be easier
for him if we just got him in and out of the worship service. He said, “no, no, no, no. I don’t want in and out. I come to worship, and if people want to come
and visit me I will be glad to visit with them.” And so that was my first introduction to him
as a celebrity, and then he shows up one day in my office. Pastor Danny De Armas sitting right over here
and Pastor Jon Marks—we were sitting in my office. Kaká looks at me and he says, “What I want
to talk about is how can I be more involved. How can God use me in the church? Because I want to make sure that I am doing
everything I can for Him.” Now I haven’t had that many conversations
that went like that with members that were just normal people like me, but to have a
celebrity, to have somebody of his stature and to have the platform he has to say I want
to be involved. I want to help. That tells you where he is. And I am blessed to be his pastor. We text back and forth all the time, and I
love him. And I just want to say to you thank you for
getting him to Liberty University; it’s awesome.>>NASSER: The day that you guys came together
to the youth camp, the week after the shooting, Kaká, you had just spent that day with the
governor. And Shaq and yourself going from hospital
to hospital visiting some of the victims, and hugging the necks of some of the families. Tell us about that Pulse shooting, and I know
you both were pretty involved in loving and serving the city. Your church’s involvement, your involvement. I’d love to hear about that.>>UTH: I’ve got to just say to you guys,
when that incident happened—you know it happened early on a Sunday morning—so we
started out the day getting reports. And the numbers kept going up, and all of
the sudden about the third service—we have three services on Sunday morning—about the
third service we realized this thing is unbelievably big. And so it kind of changed the day for us. David, I will tell you that in the immediate
hours and days that followed, I remember distinctly the people who called me from outside of Orlando
and said, “What can we do to help?” Now the reason I remember that is because
there weren’t that many, but let me tell you one of them who represented Liberty. David Nasser called me and said, “Pastor,
what can we do at Liberty to help Orlando right now?” I will never forget that call—never forget
it.>>NASSER: Can I put a pause real quickly
and say the reason I got to do that is because that very morning, our president, Jerry Falwell
Jr. texted me and said, “We’ve got to help. Find out how we can help, how we can serve. And he said if—“ (Shouts from audience) They’re saying Jerry, Jerry. That’s what they’re saying. Translate that, all right, Gill, all right? But I want to make sure you understand, that
you understand our president and our first lady. That Sunday morning when they woke up to the
same news, the first reaction they had was who do we know there on the ground that we
can reach out to so that we can serve. And literally, they even began suggesting. He said, maybe we can use our jet to get some
families who need to be brought in to be there with victims. Maybe we can send a team to go. Do we need to give blood? Do we need to send counselors? How do we serve? And so we only get to do that, because we’re
empowered by, really, a pastoral president who gets to be that. So all glory to God, but this team right here
is empowered by that.>>UTH: Well I remember the call, and I just
was thankful that I had partners, that we had people praying for us. Let me tell you what I’ve noticed about the
Pulse incident and the aftermath. The darker the night, the brighter His light
shines, and I have seen the Lord Jesus shine in so many ways through this man and through
our church. It challenged our church to think about how
do we love? How are we perceived among the LGBTQ community? Because we had been perceived as being very
angry, very judgmental, and that’s not the heart of Jesus. That’s not what we’re called to be, and so
we said to ourselves, how are we going to demonstrate the love of Jesus? And so we opened our arms. We sent pastors down to meet with the families
that could speak Spanish, because, as you know, it was a Latin night. And so many of them were Latino and speaking—Spanish
speakers only. Our pastors from our Spanish ministry went,
and they began to minister. David, we offered our facilities for any funeral
free of charge. There were three young men who were there
in the club. Two of them were seriously injured. They were the last ones released from the
hospital. They had very serious injuries. We heard that they couldn’t pay their rent. There was only one of them that was out of
the hospital, and he didn’t have the money and the funds. This was long before the giving, you know,
and all the funding had to come in. We sent a message to them that you don’t have
to worry about your rent. We’re going to take care of your rent as
long as you need it. And if you ask why or wonder why you tell
them First Baptist Church Orlando loves you, and we’re going to take care of your rent. And we were able to do that in a number of
ways. As a result, we have seen many of them baptized—those
who were there, family members of those who were there. And there’s a young lady who says I’ve found
my home; this is my home church. And when I gave her a hug, met her for the
first time. I reached around her. She said be easy, Pastor. I said, I’m sorry. Are you still recovering from a wound? She said he shot me nine times, and she said,
look at my hand. She was missing part of her hand, and she
said this church has loved me. And this is where I want my home to be. So God has done a work in us just as He is
doing a work in the city. And one of those works that he’s doing in
us, people like Kaká who have gone to the hospital and have ministered to them, and
so I want you to share some what of the things you’ve had and opportunities you’ve had during
this.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Orlando is a very calm city.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But that week was a very heavy week
for all of us.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: There were three incidents.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: One was the singer that was murdered.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: The Pulse tragedy>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And the incident at Disney with the
child.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I’m a very optimistic person.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And I really felt everything very
strongly what was happening in our city.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But that which Pastor David has just
mentioned>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Was the thing that impressed me the
most.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: How the city immediately>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Got involved, got engaged. Everybody>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Regardless of the persons of those
that were directly involved in the incident.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: It was the whole country. The city was mobilized as well as the whole
country.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And seeing all of those people getting,
receiving assistance, receiving help>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Was the most remarkable thing to
me>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Because that truly, to me, is what
Jesus would want us to do.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: It was a way for us to use that moment,
that tragedy>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: To show that love is more powerful
than any of those things>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But not just love that comes from
the mouth>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But a love that comes through attitude>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: That’s why I’d like to thank each
one of you that was standing a few minutes ago, I’d would like to thank you.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Because that, to me, that shows that
you don’t, you not only speak. You don’t only talk about love; you actually
move in action.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And that is what truly makes a difference.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Because to write in social media
that you love someone, it’s something very easy to do.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But when I have to show a behavior
that displays—when I have to have a behavior that displays love.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: That’s, to me, that’s where it really
counts.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So thank you and congratulations.>>UTH: And I want to make sure
you guys know this, that we received a lot of hate mail from places—all churches, all
believers. And we don’t really tune that stuff in too
much, but the reason that’s so hurtful to see Christians attack Christians trying to
make a difference, is because that’s the one wound that’s hard to explain to a lost world. How can we shoot each other? And many thought we’d given up our beliefs
about homosexuality. No, we still believe the Scripture word for
word; we just believe all the Scripture. He called us to love. He called us to be like Jesus.>>NASSER: Pastor, do you think that friendly
fire is coming, because people confuse that compassion all of a sudden might look like
you’re condoning, whereas you’re not condoning a lifestyle; you’re just showing people love,
and honestly just being human. It’s Romans 2 – kindness that can lead people
to repentance. What advice would you give us when we come
to another moment where we see someone that maybe we don’t agree with on everything, but
needs our love, needs our compassion?>>UTH: Just remember what He did for you. While you were still a sinner Christ died
for you. He didn’t wait for you to get your life cleaned
up. And I believe that love is not condoning. In fact, if that’s the case then Jesus condoned
sin by coming to this world to love us. He did not, and neither do we.>>NASSER: It’s just— it’s powerful. That could change the world if we did live
that way.>>UTH: And God gives people like Kaká platforms,
and I’ve got to tell you a story on him. I said when did you first know that you were
gifted, and knew, I mean, you had a gift to play the game of soccer? And I’ve never heard him tell me this, never
heard him share this. When he was seven years old, the teacher called
his mom and said we believe that your son has a very unusual gift from God. And we want to encourage you to really develop
that gift, and we’re recommending an academy that was developing young soccer players. And so at seven years of age a teacher saw
the incredible gift that God had given Kaká. Now, I told him my mom got a call from the
teacher when I was seven, but it wasn’t anything like that, nothing like that. But isn’t that amazing? That as early as that, God, I believe called
Him out. And I believe God brought Him to Orlando for
this season to be a voice, and to be that compassionate heart to help walk us through
these days.>>NASSER: Amen, man. And speaking of your mother, what a rare gift
for us that Ms. Simone is with us. Your mother is with us. Can we welcome Simone? Kaká, Ricardo, what is one thing that you
admire and love about your mother?>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: There are many things of course>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: The main one is her love for Jesus,>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: because I think it goes like a ripple
effect.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Because the love that she has for
Christ she is able to convey that love in all different areas of her life.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: That’s the thing that I admire the
most about my mom.>>NASSER: Amen. That’s amazing. How fun! We get to have your mom with us. How can we pray for you? This is a question we always ask our guests. What is something specifically that we can
be praying for, for you, Ricardo?>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: I’d like for you to pray for me as
some sort of support>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: It’s not easy for me to be in a position
where I am exposed.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Today it’s easier for me to handle>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: Because of my convictions.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: And to have a faith that has grown
a more mature faith>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: But I know the importance of prayer>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: So every time you remember and you
pray for me, pray for support.>>KAKA: [Portuguese]>>GILL: This is the prayer—the kind of
prayer I’d like for all of you to pray for me.>>NASSER: Amen. Let’s do that together. Hey Gill, will you lead us in this prayer? Yeah, lead us in Portuguese. God knows us in Portuguese. We’ll trust you.>>GILL: [Portuguese]

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